Sunday, February 6, 2011

Team Building is not Rocket Science

It is amazing what people can accomplish when it doesn't matter who gets the credit.   –Harry S. Truman

Team building is a critical part of organizational success. You would be hard pressed to find anyone that would disagree with this notion. Regardless, it seems that most organizations have yet to figure out what it takes to successfully build great teams. The good news is that it is really not very difficult. The bad news is that it does require a sustained commitment of leadership.

Get Feedback as if they Were Customers: Think of your employees as customers, albeit internal customers. You need to get feedback from them in order to proactively identify issues and disconnects. Employee surveys and feedback are also a great way of encouraging contributions and innovative thinking. Finally, it reinforces the notion that employees are important to the success of the organization.

Relax the Formal Communication: Try to step away from the formal employee-boss interaction to foster a little free speech. Giving employees reassurance that they can speak frankly about issues that might be interfering with success creates opportunity to be proactive. Encouraging open workplace communication will develop healthy and productive work relationships.

Organize Team Building Events: Taking a day trip out for "R and R" can do wonders for breaking through the ice and developing relationships. Some great places to visit are the local Paintball field, or a sports/entertainment complex. Those centers that have the rock-climbing wall are magnificent. End a day of great team building activities with a late lunch. Give out one or two awards at lunch. I have seen this type of endeavor work wonders for a team. The inroads made at these events translate immediately over to the workplace.

The Team’s Success is Everyone’s Success: Make a habit of vocally and publicly appreciating and acknowledging each other’s efforts. Even small celebrations of jobs well done or projects delivered ahead of schedule build powerful relationships and reinforce motivation. Team members are more incented to stay engaged on the vision, and each other.

Successful team building in the workplace translates into success for everyone, including the organization. But remember, it all begins and ends with leadership.
How is your organization building great teams?



  1. Wise--Thanks!

    Olga Kovshanova, MBA, MA
    Sales and Guest Relations Manager for CIS, Eastern Europe & Greece
    The Grand Mauritian Resort & Spa, Luxury Collection, Starwood
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