Nothing makes us cringe quite like the idea of awkward and uncomfortable team building activities for employees.
We all know that feeling when we’re forced to participate in a team building activity that just doesn’t work, where everyone is dragging their feet and no one wants to be there.
But here’s the thing when it comes to team building activities: when they’re rough, they’re rough, but when they’re done right, they can be transformative for a team.
Good team building activities are hard to come by, especially for next-level teams that are really looking to bond.
But when team building activities are done right, they can make a team stronger, the workday more enjoyable, and even work more productive.
Now that’s something we can all definitely get behind.
The Importance of Team Building (Especially Now)
Team building activities have always been a part of the workplace, for better and for worse.
But in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent shift to a remote workforce, team building activities might even be more critical.
Studies tell us that the global shift to mostly remote work has led to challenges with communication, passive knowledge sharing, and staying connected as a team.
Research has also revealed that the pandemic led to people interacting less with their “close networks,” and networks shrinking overall. The need for good team building activities is greater now than ever before.
Where Typical Team Building Fails
If team building is so critical to making teams stronger, why does it typically fail? Why is it normally oh-so-unpleasant for the very teams that it’s attempting to strengthen? We see a few big reasons why typical team building activities miss the mark:
When the entire global workforce shifted due to the pandemic, so did the needs of teams.
Many of the “old” ways of team building are simply outdated, due to both the pandemic and rapidly changing needs.
When your team is incredible and modern, you don’t want to do those same old team building activities of generations past.
Your remote team needs virtual team building activities that are going to work in this era.
They’re well-intended but mismanaged
Team building horror stories are totally a thing. Think: trust falls gone terribly wrong.
Just because an activity is deemed to be a “team building activity” doesn’t mean it’s actually a good idea, or that it’ll deliver the intended results.
That’s why there are team building experts (like us here at Kabloom) who can manage team building for you.
Yeah yeah, we’ve all done the obvious virtual team building activities at this point.
The online escape room, the virtual happy hour, and the show and tell night are mostly overplayed.
Instead of fostering connection and improving work production, they’re going to seem like a drag.
The Perks of Good Team Building
When team building goes wrong, it really goes wrong. But when team building is done right, it can deliver tons of perks for everyone. Here are just a few of the perks of good team building:
Team building strengthens teams
While building and maintaining work relationships might have been a challenge before, it’s clear across the board that work relationships have deeply suffered in the wake of the pandemic.
Studies show us that younger workers and new employees at a company feel particularly socially isolated, and that a decrease in interactions with colleagues is connected to less innovation, strategic thinking, collaborating, and brainstorming with others.
Excellent virtual team building is the clear solution to these problems. Without team building, these problems will be left to their own devices. But by creating opportunities for teams (especially remote teams) to laugh, unwind, connect, and compete, many of these issues can be addressed.
Team building activities make the day more fun
While it has many perks, working from home has proven to be an isolating and frankly redundant experience. The office is much less thrilling when it’s next to your bedroom (or even in your bedroom, as it is for many of us).
Even those of us who are still going into the office are facing the challenges of working with hybrid teams, and are trying to stay motivated and energized.
So what better way to perk everyone up than with an awesome team building activity on the schedule?
Think about it: instead of back-to-back calls until the end of the day, you have a hands-on graffiti workshop led by a world-class street artist on your schedule.
Or your calendar is blocked off one evening for a virtual DIY cocktail class where you learn to make delicious drinks with a world-class mixologist. Yeah, that’s definitely bound to make the day much more fun for everyone.
Team building can lead to genuinely more productive employees
We’ve learned a lot about how people are working today, and the impacts of remote work, after the pandemic brought previously unimaginable change.
In the Work Trend Index we see that employees are facing productivity burnout. Remote employees are now spending much more time in virtual meetings, sending emails, working on documents, and sending chats. But these productivity “signals” are actually just masking an exhausted workforce.
Another interesting tidbit? That some of the more human aspects of working remotely actually increase productivity. Meeting your coworker’s cat or having your sister crash your Zoom call actually leads to more authentic connection, and is tied to a boost in productivity.
The clear solution to more productivity is more activities that foster genuine connection, and virtual team building activities are the clear frontrunner. By giving employees time to unwind, enjoy, and connect, they’ll be ready to tackle whatever comes their way during the work day.
It can spark healthy competition
Every workplace can benefit from some healthy competition among employees. When everyone is working in their own silo from home, it can be tough to feel that fiery spark of wanting to do your best.
When we don’t see how well the others around us are doing on a real-time basis, friendly and natural competition can fall by the wayside.
The numbers agree: more than half of workers in the US say that they do better at their jobs when there’s some competition. So yeah, while our Pub Quiz Trivia is all fun and games, it’ll also spark some fiery (yet friendly) competition among employees.
Team building genuinely connects your remote employees
When it comes to your remote employees, it’s important to understand that they’re probably starved for connection. They genuinely miss bumping into each other in the hallway, slipping out for a coffee break together, and stopping by your office to say hello.
There is an intense need among remote employees for genuine connection among employees, and good team building activities are an incredible opportunity to bring your team together.
Kabloom Has Your Back
Okay, so you’re determined to bring awesome virtual team building to your team, but you’re not sure where to start. That’s where we come in.
Here at Kabloom, there’s one thing that we know inside and out, and that’s virtual team building.
Our fresh experiences will revitalize your team, and truly bring them together. Contact us today so we can curate the perfect experience for you and your team.