“Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision. The ability to direct individual accomplishments toward organizational objectives. It is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results.” -Andrew Carnegie
There’s nothing more deflating and downright frustrating for a leader than a team that just isn’t on the same page. While everyone may be performing their job responsibilities effectively, if they are not acting as a team on overall business goals, you’re not succeeding as a leader.
Building a cohesive team doesn’t have to be a daunting task. In fact, it can be fun while being productive. We commonly recommend team-building activities to help develop trust among your employees and make your team more productive and efficient.
Appropriate team-building activities can establish a stronger bond and ease conflict between colleagues, which in most cases, increases collaboration and communication during daily business interactions.
Here are three simple ways to proactively build a cohesive team and improve morale:
Communicate the “What’s it all for?”—It’s easy for team members who don’t have a common goal to simply go off on their own and act as an island. Emphasise the group’s mission and goals rather than focusing on individual advancement. Speak in terms of the team and encourage individual members to think like a team rather than worrying only about themselves.
Get out! Of the office, that is.—Whether it’s a lunch, a picnic or a volunteer assignment, hosting a field trip of some kind can offer a neutral location to bond as people and not just as co-workers. Plan a fun activity such as a trip to a museum or a sports event. You can even incorporate a facilitator who can design team building activities to achieve better conversations for better team understanding and effectiveness.
A team that learns together, stays together!—Organising professional development opportunities is a great way to stimulate your team’s sense of unity. You might invite a speaker to conduct seminars on managing change and uncertainty and other relatable topics that engage the group and encourage participation in a relaxed and fun way. ‘Lunch and Learn’ series is a great way to also get the team together for lunch in the office while also providing a development opportunity. You can choose to provide them with lunch or let them bring their own. You might even suggest that each team member develop a presentation on a topic they feel comfortable speaking about. Doing this will also allow everyone to have an equal opportunity to shine.
Building and maintaining a cohesive team is a process that will continue to evolve as team members develop or change. Whichever team building exercise you choose, make sure you are consistent in the frequency and timing so your team has something to count on and look forward to.
Do you have a cohesive team? Are there other strategies you would add to this list? Contribute to the conversation in the comments section below! And if you need a little extra help building your team into a cohesive unit, contact us—we can help.