As a small business owner, a cohesive team of employees might be imperative to your success. According to Inc. Magazine, many small businesses find high-performing teams critical because “people must work closely together, wear many hats and work effectively across the organization to get tasks accomplished quickly enough to remain competitive.” Because teamwork is so critical to a business’ success, team-building activities are vital.
Team-building activities can help develop trust among your employees. Trust is a critical component to business, especially when teamwork is required on a daily basis to achieve objectives and grow companies. According to John Castro, the CEO of Merrill Corporation, “Trust is critical in business because it can make or break a team, and business can no longer survive without teams.” Mutual trust fostered by team-building activities can allow your employees to depend more on one another and be more productive and efficient as a result. One team-building activity that can build trust pairs employees and requires them to maintain eye contact for at least 60 seconds without looking away. According to cloud collaboration company Huddle, this activity can make employees “become more comfortable and trusting of each other through the practicing of eye contact.”
Depending on the varied personalities of your employees, unnecessary conflicts and disputes might arise. Team-building activities can play an important role in easing conflicts between coworkers by allowing employees to bond with one another and become more accustomed to each others’ personalities. To ease conflicts, use team-building activities that allow coworkers to get to know one another on a personal level. These type of exercises might include having each employee share three interesting personal facts about herself with the group. If conflicts in the office are an issue with your team, hold your team-building activities in a neutral location such as a retreat space, public park or rented hotel conference room where any sentiment from the office won’t be so palpable.
Team-building activities can establish a stronger bond between coworkers who might blame one another when problems arise within shared business projects. This bond can help in increasing collaboration among employees during daily business activities. According to Inc. Magazine, an effective team is one with “a penchant for collaboration and a keep awareness of interdependency.” Assign team-building activities that require all employees to participate at once. For example, present your team with a hypothetical business problem, assign specific responsibilities to each employee and give the team an hour alone to solve together. During team-building activities, encourage employees to avoid blaming one another for solutions to hypothetical situations that might not work well.
Through team-building activities, employees can learn how to better communicate with one another because they probably will be faced with activities that need to be solved as a group. For example, one activity could include giving one sheet of paper to each of your employees. Split your employees into two groups and ask them to compete in making the tallest structure out of the paper provided. These two groups will be forced to pool their resources and communicate to build the tallest paper structure. This type of communication practice can translate into more productive and efficient daily work and allow employees to function better as an overall team. During team-building activities, encourage your workers to verbalize issues as they arise in a calm and professional manner.