If you are managing a team, you probably already know how important it is to build a cordial relationship between your team members to streamline your business operations.
However, it is not that easy to develop team bonding between team members coming from different cultures and ideologies.
But it is not impossible either!
Managers and HRs need to practice the right team bonding activities in the organisation that can help team members to better interact with one another. There are many team bonding activities available that managers can execute to build a strong team today.
Why is team bonding important?
As Micheal Jordan said once, “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships.” So, if you want to scale up your business, a tight-knitted team is what you need. That’s because good teamwork can:
Team bonding is the best way to improve the whole organisation’s productivity. It allows team members to better know each other and solve basic team conflicts on their own.
Acquire talented employees
Almost 46% of job seekers consider company culture before applying for a job. So, your positive and teamwork culture can help you employ competent professionals in your workplace.
Through team bonding exercises, managers can understand the weaknesses and strengths of every team member. This, in return, helps them in improving their performance in the right way.
Elevate team engagement
Since managers are responsible for 70% of deviation in team engagement; thus, it is useful for them to organise team bonding activities occasionally. These activities facilitate them to keep all team members 100% motivated and engaged.
When you host friendly contests in your office, it can highlight competitive strikes among team members but in a healthy way. The fun environment can help your team to have a healthy competition without any negative feelings.
Build a happy team
When all your team members have a cordial relationship and personal bond, this will create a happy environment in your office. A happy team can further help to improve your team’s productivity by 31% and sales by 37%.
13 team bonding activities that can build a positive company culture
Whether you are managing a remote or in-house team, you can practice many team bonding activities to stimulate team collaboration. Here are a few creative and engaging team building activities for all companies:
Solve a puzzle
You can simulate analytical thinking and problem-solving skills in your team via puzzles. Puzzles can help your team to brainstorm different strategies together and complete a task within a given timeframe.
You can incorporate puzzles in your team bonding activities in many ways. For example, you can divide your team into smaller groups and assign a puzzle to each one. Here you can make things more interesting by hiding a few puzzle pieces in your office that your team needs to find to complete the puzzle. This way, you can turn a boring puzzle into an interesting scavenger hunt.
However, if you manage a remote team, you can use brain training games like online Solitaire or Jigsaw puzzles to connect your team. Here you can see which team has solved the puzzle fast or within a few moves to announce the winner.
Once your team has solved the puzzle, you can ask them different questions to understand their weaknesses and strengths better, such as:
- Who did what to solve the puzzle?
- What was your team’s strategy to win the game?
- Whose ideas helped the team to win?
- Why did you make a certain decision?
- What challenges did you face while solving the puzzle?
Flip the tarp
Flip the tarp is a fun activity to build problem-solving, creativity, and communication among peers.
In this game, you have to pair your two employees and give them a tarp. Here the challenge is to flip the tarp 6-7 times, standing on the other side of the tarp. However, they can only use their feet. They can’t get off the fabric or let their feet touch the floor.
This exercise allows your employees to think of creative ways to solve a difficult problem. It is a great team bonding activity to nurture a positive work environment.
The good old scavenger hunt is the best game to lift your team’s spirit. A scavenger hunt helps to collaborate and move your employees.
If your employees are often copied up in a small cubicle, it is a good idea to organise your scavenger hunt outdoors. This will refresh their mind, and an open environment will help them to better communicate with one another.
Here you can also announce a small reward for the scavenger hunt winner to promote a healthy competition like a free lunch coupon, a gift card, etc.
Trivia might sound like a high school all over again. But if you want your team to coordinate and learn together, traditional trivia is a perfect team-building activity.
With trivia, you can even motivate your employees to learn new things. For example, you can pick some motivational or self-help books and request your employees to read them before trivia day.
This way, your team will learn to research and prepare together for upcoming challenges. They also learn to delegate tasks and trust one another.
Here are a few popular books to include in your office trivia day:
- Powershift by Daymond John
- Off-Centered Leadership by Sam Calagione
- Creating Passion-Driven Teams by Dan Bobinski
- Monday Morning Motivation by David Cottrell
- Why We Do What We Do by Edward L. Deci
Count to 20
This is a super simple team-building activity. Have everyone sit in the circle. Anyone can say a number or start the count off anytime.
The objective here is to count 1 to 20. However, if two people say a number at the same time, the count will restart. This is a quick activity that can teach employees how to work together with limited communication.
A human knot is a fun activity to check the presence of mind among your team members.
First of all, have everyone form a circle, put their right hand in the air and grab someone else’s hand across the circle. Then, ask them to link their left with someone else and see if they can untangle themselves without letting go of anyone’s hand.
This activity shows team members the importance of solving problems without compromising their subordinates’ trust.
Loser or winner
Whenever you welcome someone new to the team, this exercise will allow newcomers to know other team members better.
To play the loser or the winner, divide your team into two groups, let’s say new and old members. After this, one group will share a negative life experience with everyone. Now, the other group will retell the same story while highlighting the positive aspects.
With this game, each member will learn something about one another. Also, they will learn how every life situation has both negative and positive outlooks — all you have to do is change your perception.
Organise a brainstorming session
Team building activities do not have to be fun all the time. You can also accomplish company goals while providing your team with the opportunity to bond.
Whether you have to prepare a sales pitch for a new client or need fresh ideas for upcoming campaigns, you can turn it into a brainstorming event. You can call your entire team and request them to brainstorm ideas on a particular topic.
To streamline your brainstorming session, you can use these ideas:
- Ask everyone to prepare an idea board containing their best suggestions on the topic.
- Allow everyone to share their best ideas and request other team members to raise their hands if they like them. And, the idea of getting more raised hands will win.
- You can also provide queue cards to all team members so they can rank different ideas like Good, Better, or Best.
Blind scavenger hunt
This is another version of the scavenger hunt game. In this, one person will be blindfolded, and other team members will guide him or her to find a certain object.
The game is a great way to observe how your employees work together under intense pressure and how well they can understand instructions.
You can divide your team into multiple groups to make the game more interesting and challenging. Also, you can ask the opposite group to pipe in with the wrong directions to further confuse the blindfolded person.
Mystery dinner activity is a bit expensive and time-consuming. But if you want your team to come out of their comfort zone and make new friends, it is the perfect activity. Even HubSpot has also practiced this team bonding exercise.
The mystery dinner works something like this; you have to invite a group of people from different teams to dinner at a restaurant or someone’s house. All expenses will be incurred by the company.
The mystery element here is that employees are only informed about the dinner’s date and time. On the day of dinner, they will receive an email with the restaurant’s name and with whom they are going.
This activity helps you put employees in new surroundings and motivate them to bond with different team members.
Passing the ball
This is a classic team bonding game. All you have to do is ask your team to sit in a circle. Then, throw a ball to a person and ask them to say something about themselves that no one else knows.
Once the person shares something about himself, the pass will be passed to the next person and so on. This is a simple get-to-know game that you can organise within five minutes.
If your company supports a cause, you can kill two birds with one arrow here. You can pair different team members together to dedicate a few hours to volunteer work.
This way, you won’t only help your team bond but also do something good. It is a win-win situation for all.
Join a class
People often bond better when they share the same interests. So, here, you can ask your team members to write down their passion on a piece of paper.
Now, you have to pair the people who share the same interest together and ask them to join a class to follow their passion. For example, if five people in your team are passionate about food, you can ask them to join a cooking class together. However, the company has to pay for the class fees here.
There you go! We have listed some of the most interesting and fun team bonding activities with you. Now, all you have to do is select an activity that can help you meet your company goals, and you are set to build a strong relationship with your teammates.
Bond is something that can make your employees happy, productive and energetic. Thus, managers and HRs should spend some time on team bonding activities to create a positive company culture.
If you have any personal favourite team-building exercises to share with us, you are more than welcome to comment below. Meanwhile, we hope you get positive results from the above-mentioned activities.
About the Author
Janki Sharma is Head of Operations at N2N Digital and has over 5+ years of experience working in the marketing and sales domain. She provided innovative ideas and solutions for business growth. She loves to write on a wide range of topics like digital marketing, tech, and many more.