Organizing effective team building events is a great way to bring people together and foster closer relationships in an organization. You can also use corporate events to celebrate achievements, reward hard work, develop communication skills, strengthen personal bonds, and boost productivity.
But ensuring your team building event is productive takes a lot of planning. And it’s challenging to develop the perfect event for every team. After all, each group has its own dynamics and personality. And a productive team building session is only effective when you get the entire on board.
Sometimes, the biggest challenge of ensuring team building success is knowing which are the best activities to connect a diverse group of people and bring them together.
In this article, you will learn what it takes to organize a productive team building event in 11 steps. By following these steps, your team activities should produce better results and help you reach your goals. However, before exploring the best ways to plan for team building, it’s crucial to address the challenges you face.
What is a Productive Team Building Event?
What do we mean when talking about a productive team building event? The word “productive” means that the event reaches the goals you set out to achieve. It means the event produces positive results and represents a good investment of time and resources.
Challenge of Planning a Successful Team Building Event
The effectiveness of team building events is well-documented. But just bringing together a group of highly skilled professionals is not enough for team members to work productively together. So, in many cases, teamwork skills must be learned, and team building gives business owners the chance to train members to collaborate and work toward common goals.
The results of a systematic review in the journal PLoS One found that teamwork training is crucial in a successful workplace. This can help foster teamwork and improve team effectiveness. The most productive team building events help team members “actively learn about, practice, and continually develop teamwork.”
The challenge when organizing a corporate team building event is that not all employees like team activities. Research suggests that over 30 percent of office workers dislike team building games. However, the reasons for this seem to be related to the type of team building exercises some organizations organize. They seem to rely on old, boring cookie-cutter programs.
To meet the challenge of organizing effective team building events, you must use creative thinking to come up with unique and compelling activities. The goal should be to reenergize employees, strengthen morale, and increase productivity.
How to Organize Productive Team Building Events in Easy 11 Steps
1. Know your team
The biggest challenge in organizing team building events that don’t suck is to know your team. The goal of planning events is to bring everyone together but push them outside of their comfort zone. However, each member should feel included. Therefore, you should plan with everyone’s needs in mind.
To do this, you need to understand their personalities and plan activities that appeal to each of them. For example, if some members have mobility issues, it would be unwise to plan an obstacle course or other types of physical challenges.
Once you’ve identified the best match for your group, you can customize the experience further by filtering based on interests, age groups, gender, and other variables.
If you’re having trouble finding fun activities for your team event, you can get in touch with Full Tilt. We offer a free consultation to help you figure out how to build a fun team outing that results in positive memories.
2. Identify your team building goals
As the adage goes, “no wind is favorable if one does not know to which port one is sailing.”
Therefore, knowing your objectives is key to organizing a successful team building event. Only then can you ensure that the investment is an effective use of time and resources.
Here are some ways that fun team building activities can strengthen corporate culture in your organization:
- Improve collaboration and trust
- Develop better communication skills
- Conflict resolution and problem-solving skills
- Build team spirit and morale
- Team motivation
- Leadership and employee engagement
Take, for example, the Authentic Leadership training program hosted by Full Tilt Team Development. This is described as “the most exciting and vibrant learning event you’ve ever had.” It involves challenging interactions to complete multiple tasks to develop essential leadership skills to motivate others.
3. Get the team involved in planning events
Planning an effective team building event takes a lot of work. And to ensure success, it makes sense to involve the entire team in planning the activities. In addition, by involving them early on, you’re giving them a chance to see firsthand how your organization functions better when everyone works together.
However, there are more benefits. Inviting your team to help plan the next corporate makes them invested in its successful outcome. They will also come up with new ideas — maybe a fun game you never thought about.
4. Determine your timeline
To organize an effective team building event, give yourself plenty of time to plan. In our experience, you need between four and six weeks if the event includes fewer than 100 participants. For larger events, have a minimum of four months for planning.
Once you know what activities you want to include in your event, break those down into smaller tasks. Then, assign each one a time limit for completion. Next, determine how much lead time you’ll need to complete each step. For example, say you want to hold a scavenger hunt. You’ll need enough time to print out maps, purchase supplies, and distribute them.
5. Establish a budget for the event
The next step in planning an effective team building event is to set a budget. This includes knowing exactly what you can afford and what expenses you can cut out. For example, suppose you plan to organize a corporate retreat. In that case, you may have to include food and drinks in your budget, as well as accommodation costs.
There are various ways to reach your goals for an upcoming team building event or conference. Many options may be free, and others could cost thousands. However, a budget ensures the cost of the event doesn’t spiral out of control.
6. Choose a location or venue
The right venue or location can mean the difference between a successful team building experience and one that flops. Several variables can affect where you host the event. For example, the size of the group, budget, and time of year can impact the location.
For example, planning a team building event in Austin, TX, is a great idea. In addition, you can organize urban scavenger hunts or outdoor recreational activities. The city has great weather all year long and is perfect for outdoor activities when organizing corporate events.
7. Create an event day logistics checklist
After determining the larger elements of the event, it’s time to think about the smaller matters to ensure everything runs smoothly. This is where a well-organized checklist comes in handy. With so much to plan for an effective corporate event, it’s easy to miss small things that could impact your event.
Here are several things to consider when planning for a successful team building event:
- Transportation: How will participants get to the event? Will the company arrange a bus or airfares or will each one be responsible for getting themselves to the event on time?
- Food and drinks: What food and beverages will be supplied? Will alcohol be available?
- Accommodation: Where will overnight accommodation be arranged for off-site locations? What are the transportation arrangements to and from the hotel?
- What to bring: Is any special clothing or footwear necessary? What will happen in the event of bad weather?
- Signage: Who is responsible for getting signage to the event, installing it, and dismantling it?
- Liability waivers: Will attendance require signing a waiver before the event?
Depending on the event, more logistical considerations may be included on the list.
8. Have an agenda
A schedule or agenda helps you plan for an event by organizing everything into one place. This way, you know exactly when each activity starts and ends. It also helps create excitement and ensures that everyone is engaged throughout the entire event.
Here are some things to include in a team building event agenda:
- Arrival and departures times
- Meeting points
- Duration of each event
- List of suggested items to bring
It’s also a good idea to inform participants that events are subject to change.
9. Get out of your comfort zone
Planning a successful team building event means getting everyone out of their comfort zone. However, the activities should not make participants feel too awkward, embarrassed, or uncomfortable. Therefore, it is vital to plan activities where everyone feels encouraged to participate willingly.
An improv workshop is handy to help everyone get to know each other and feel at ease. You can use these events to build rapport and make introductions. This can help create a stronger bond during the team building events.
10. Choose the right activities
The key to organizing an effective team building event is to plan the right activities. First, the activities should help you establish your goals and create a strong bond. Second, they should be cliche activities that fail to inspire participants. Finally, the best way to ensure the event results in team bonding is to get them involved in the planning.
11. Use a team building events agency
The best way to ensure your team building event is effective is to leave the organizing to the experts. Coming up with creative and innovative types of team building activities can be challenging. Therefore, many team building events fail because of a lack of experience. However, a company like Full Tilt has many years of experience organizing successful events.
Call Full Tilt Team Development to Organize a Successful Team Building Event
At Full Tilt, we realize how challenging organizing effective team building activities are. And even if you have remote teams and need to plan virtual team building activities, we can help.
Therefore, our experts will work with you to align team events with your goals. Each event is unique, so we take into consideration your team size, location, and requirements. The result is a solid return on investment, increased job satisfaction, and stronger company culture.
To arrange a free consultation, please call us today at 310-400-6285 or fill out this easy online form.