According to Patrick Lencioni, renowned author of “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team”, effective collaboration is essential for any business to be successful. He emphasizes that the capacity to work together efficiently is a rarity, but a powerful benefit in terms of enhancing a company’s competitive edge. Despite this, it is not always straightforward for businesses to work together effectively, which is why many companies undertake team-building activities as a means of improving their collaborative processes.
Team building can be difficult to cultivate in an environment where employees are no longer confined to the same physical space. However, it is still possible to create a sense of unity and cohesion even if the workforce is distributed, by utilizing digital resources and encouraging colleagues to establish and maintain regular communication with each other.
The initial priority is to build a productive corporate culture. To ensure that everyone at the organization is on the same page, it is essential to cultivate a robust corporate culture. This can be achieved through effective communication, consistent policies and shared values.
Company culture established, try some of the following team-building exercises.
Games to Break the Ice
It is relatively straightforward for colleagues to become acquainted with each other in a traditional office setting. Conversely, in a remote working environment, employees may go for an extended period of time without having the opportunity to meet in person.
In order to ensure that participants of a teleconference or face-to-face meeting are familiar with each other, an icebreaker activity should be included in the team building exercise. This will ensure that everyone is comfortable and able to work together effectively.
Ways to do this include, but are not limited to:
- Posing the question, “Name something interesting about yourself,” to each participant.
- Making light of serious topics (clean and workplace appropriate, of course)
- Doing things like quizzes or surveys
There are no hard and fast rules for icebreaker games. If you think it will help your team to become more comfortable with each other, then it may be beneficial to make it the first stage of your team-building activities.
In a traditional office environment, employees typically invest time and energy into making their workspace as aesthetically pleasing as possible. If you have staff who work remotely, you may wish to offer them a similar opportunity to show off their workspace by hosting a photo competition.
Take pictures of everyone’s home or workplace offices, then have a contest to see who has the greatest décor, the most creative layout, etc.
By taking part in this activity, team members will be able to virtually “visit” each other at their own desks, just as if they were in the same place. This will help to lift morale, encouraging workers to make their workspaces more pleasant.
Gathering in a Coffee Shop
Team members who are based in close proximity to one another may find it useful to arrange regular meetings at a nearby coffee shop. This can be an informal and relaxed way to catch up on upcoming projects and also to get to know each other better.
If people are geographically dispersed, what implications does this have? In such a situation, it is still possible to organise a virtual conference, however, the attendees would be located in different cafes rather than all in the same place, with everyone accessing the conference from their own computers.
Prior to commencing, it is recommended that each team member introduce themselves and provide some information about their preferred coffee shop; such as its atmosphere, location, etc. This is a great way to break the ice and allows everyone to become acquainted with each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
Internet-Based Treasure Hunts
One way to foster team-building within the workforce is to divide the staff into smaller groups and allocate the same task to each. This could involve something familiar to them; for example, asking each group to find a park, fountain or signpost that marks the boundary of their area. This could be a fun, interactive exercise that brings the team together and encourages them to work collaboratively.
Put someone in charge of your group who will then divide up the tasks to be completed by the members.
The team leader will photograph the items and put them on a job board. The winning team will be the one that finds all of the objects first.
Hold a Competition or Game
Productivity may be increased and morale can be boosted via competitions amongst workers.
It is not necessary to link competitions to employment; there are other effective ways to encourage individuals to promote their health, wellbeing and learning. Competitions that promote these values can be a great way to build relationships and foster cooperation among members of a group.
It is essential to ensure that all individuals are fully aware of the regulations and the deadline for submitting their entries for the competition. Furthermore, we should aim to make the contest as accessible as possible to all members of the public.
Don’t forget to announce the outcome so that everyone may offer their congratulations to the victor.
Karaoke/Open Mic/Comedy Night
Despite the fact that it is common for employees to socialize outside of the workplace, remote employees may not have the same opportunity to do so until provisions are made to make it possible.
It is highly recommended to arrange a virtual gathering where everyone can come together to have some fun. There are numerous applications available online which allow users to partake in activities such as singing karaoke, telling jokes and reciting poetry. This could be an excellent way to amuse yourselves and create a positive atmosphere.
Don’t become too serious and let folks to come and go as they like. Your staff may have so much fun that they want to make this an annual tradition.
As managers of remote teams, it is essential to ensure that team development is given the highest priority. If employees feel isolated and undervalued, this can have a detrimental effect on their performance and morale. Investing in team development activities can create a sense of community and camaraderie, bolstering motivation and productivity.
By instituting even a few of these measures, you may improve morale, raise output, and make everyone feel like their work matters