Team Development: Don’t Waste $$$ On One-Off Team Building Events
When you choose to spend money on a large investment, how much time and effort do you put into researching the goods or services to be purchased? And how do you know that you are going to get value for money? We all want to ensure that we spend our dollars wisely and that any money or time invested will provide a return on our investment. It is exactly the same when, as a company, you are looking at investing in Team Development.
In order to fully invest in successful Organisational Development and Team Development, it needs to be incorporated into a long-term Team Building strategy as part of the Company’s overall corporate objectives. High-performing teams don’t manifest out of one-off Team Building events therefore, it is recommended that you don’t waste your money doing so. You get out what you put in. A long-term Team Development strategy means a long-term return on your investment.
Eduardo Salas and his colleagues from the University of Central Florida carried out research in 2009 on the effectiveness of Team Building. The research found that Team Building is one of the most prevalent group’s development interventions covering both internal and external activities and has a huge positive impact on the financial performance of an organization as well as on productivity measures of cost-effectiveness, efficiency, and quality. The research found that a team-based organization structure isn’t enough and that teams need to be nurtured, supported and developed.
This is where organizations need to invest in a long-term Team Building strategy, not just one-off events. Having a long-term Team Building strategy as part of your people strategy enables you to build a solid foundation to ensure you achieve and maintain High Performing Teams. The benefits of doing so will be long term.
The study done by Salas and colleagues in 2009 found that Team Building and Team Development is effective and does improve team outcomes. The analysis was broken down into four specific areas, which were role clarification, goal setting, interpersonal relationships and problem-solving. The analysis identified that goal setting and role clarification had the largest effect on team outcomes. Role clarification leads to less stress because team members know exactly what is expected of them and their role, which results in improved communication and therefore, the overall effectiveness of the team. Goal setting ensures the employees understand and are aware of the expectations of themselves and the team. Improvements in role clarity and communication can have lasting benefits to the functioning of the team. These two areas alone will help to attain high-performing Teams.
The view from these findings is that any Team Building event or activity should have a positive impact on team members and one that focuses on interpersonal relationships, goal setting and problem-solving. The research also identified that Team Building will be more beneficial for larger teams rather than smaller teams. This is because Team Building activities encourage individual contribution where all participants have to contribute. Individuals in small and medium size teams will already have a voice. This would suggest that Team Building is, therefore, more suited to Corporate Team Building events however if organizations select the right Team Building company to work with, events can be specifically built and modified to suit company requirements. It is also recognized that not all teams will benefit from the same Team Building strategy therefore, it is important to work with a Team Building company that can provide a bespoke service to meet your needs.
Here at Urban Quest Canada, we work with organisations both big and small to provide long-term Organisational Development and Team Development events and activities. Our service offering to clients is a long-term Team Development plan that consists of four events throughout a year, each of which logically and progressively develops all the core values of an efficient team. The core values are those of trust, communication, conflict resolution and leadership. We believe that in order to build a skill, Team Building needs to be repetitive and systematic, with each event strategically targeting one of the team values. This approach will help to build a solid foundation for the next event, which will help to build on the skills already learned.
Our 2-3 hours events are based on a competition full of specific tasks, challenges, and interaction. For our events, we have teams of four to six people, which is a great number as it means that all participants have to contribute, which helps to improve their communication skills. All of our events are run on smartphones therefore, there is no messy paperwork involved or to be carried around. This also means that we have real-time data of how each team is performing within the competition.
We use experiential activities and can customize our games to address your specific workplace challenges. This means that our activities are tailor-made for you. Prior to commencing any long-term Team Development plan with an organization, we carry out a pre-screening of the requirements sought and prioritise objectives. As part of our assessment process, people are placed in teams that mimic their daily challenges, which are normally relationship related. We also carry out a debriefing session following each event.
We work with any industry and therefore we are not limited to who we can help and our concept is one of a kind within Canada!