What are the reasons for poor team performance and how does each tie into team-building activities?
Give an example from a current event where poor team performance was evident
Many leaders and organizations bring in a team building
expert when things are going horribly wrong, feel better for a day or two and
predictably go back to the same old type of interactions.
This approach gives
team building a bad name or makes it appear ineffective when it can actually be a
powerful tool to create positive workplaces
THE FIVE KEYS ARE >
1. Leadership isn’t participating. If your leaders aren’t involved then the rest of the
employees feel like it isn’t important or they are being singled out for some reason. The
solution to this situation is to design your team building program to start at the top. Ask
that leaders participate actively and regularly to set a positive example.
2. Lack of time commitment. Team building is an ongoing process, not a one-shot activity.
Successful organizations set aside regularly scheduled time for team building activities.
When you design an ongoing program you give everyone in your organization the
opportunity to practice new behaviors and become proficient over time.
3. Superficial team building activities. Successful team building goes below the surface and
deals with core issues that affect how people behave toward each other, with an emphasis
on their thinking and values. When we do activities that only scratch the surface we get
shallow results. The key is to focus on activities that help people learn about each other and
build empathy such as having deeper conversations.
4. We forget to set ourselves up for success. Team building benefits from focus and
dedication and we can’t do that when it takes a back seat to everything else in the
workplace. You can create a productive atmosphere by requiring attendance, meeting in a
quiet place, eliminating tangential conversations, avoiding interruptions, using an expert
facilitator, asking phones to be turned off and not allowing people to excuse themselves in
the middle of the meeting.
5. Limited opportunities for practice. It took a long time for you to create your current
workplace dynamic and team building will require time and effort to take hold as well. With
continual practice you will replace the current behaviors with new actions. Give yourself a
chance to succeed by creating a program that gives people ample opportunity to practice
and fine tune the new way of doing things.
There’s a big difference between paying team building lip service and actually devoting the
time and effort to help it succeed. As leaders, we decide whether it’s important enough to
keep it going or just a haphazard reaction to the latest workplace crisis. The next time you
hear of a team building program that didn’t work you can be reasonably certain that it was