In recent years, the workforce has changed dramatically. The Millennial generation is a major part of the workforce. We’ve also seen an increase in employee turnover. As a result, there has been a renewed focus on employee engagement. Many companies have been turning toward team building activities to help establish and nurture trust and productivity within their teams.
Some organizations make the mistake of implementing team building activities to correct or solve employee behavior issues. Employee behaviors are certainly an indicator that a team building event may be beneficial for your company. However, under-performance or behavior issues are also symptomatic of a larger problem.
Leaders would be wise to implement team building events before these kinds of behavior issues arise. But how do you know when the time is right to have a team building event for your staff?
Below are a Few Ways to Know it’s Time to Have a Teambuilding Event for Your Staff
Below are a few workplace situations that may signal to leaders that a teambuilding event may be an effective way to proactively and intentionally build trust within their teams.
- A generationally diverse spectrum of workers.
- A recent hiring spree or growth spurt.
- A company restructuring or rebranding.
- An increase in your remote workforce or more flexibility in schedules.
Millennials value meaningful work that balances with their personal lives and appreciate the recognition of their unique strengths and skillsets. They enjoy teamwork, collaboration, and an open and flexible work environment. This is very different than Generation X and Baby Boomer generations, which accept that work is a necessary and independent function driven by competition, work ethic, and ladder-climbing.
These are obviously different viewpoints, which can cause workplace tension when they work closely together. A team building activity can nurture understanding between these different groups.
Though trust is hard to get back once it’s been broken, with new team members, you have the chance to help employees build trust with one another from the outset. A steep influx of new team members within a company can cause an us-versus-them mentality or cliques. More senior team members can also become annoyed with having to answer questions, train or onboard several new team members at once.
Proactively setting up team building events where newer and older employees learn more about each other’s different work styles, strengths, and personalities will help to create a supportive and understanding culture.
Big organizational changes can make workers uneasy or nervous about where they will fit within the new identity of the company. To help team members see company changes as a positive, teambuilding events are the perfect morale booster and a way to solidify goals and values for the new face of the organization.
Employees, especially millennial generations, enjoy having a voice in the direction the company is going. Use teambuilding events in these situations to re-evaluate company initiatives, services, and product offerings, team processes, and key performance indicators. Transparency and openness go a long way toward uniting a team under common goals.
According to a recent report by WorldatWork, telework or remote work (in some form) is now offered by 88 percent of organizations and is growing steadily each year. While this renewed flexibility is a huge benefit for many workers, it also can create feelings of isolation and decreased engagement.
Technological connections, email, and instant messaging replace many face-to-face meetings in these kinds of environments. This is why an in-person team building activity can be a refreshing way to help team members nurture relationships with co-workers they may not see on a daily basis.
There are many ways to approach team building activities with your team, but in every case, a proactive strategy is always best. Keeping an eye out for these situations will help you identify when a teambuilding event for your staff makes sense, increasing morale, collaboration, and performance.