As a manager, you may find that the annual company picnic just doesn’t cut it when it comes to team-building during the summer months. Following are three team-building tips that Pamela Meyer, author of “Permission: A Guide to Generating More Ideas, Being More of Yourself and Having More Fun at Work,” recommends to set the tone for lively, playful engagement during team-building gatherings:
- Play it safe, at first. Create a safe environment that encourages people to step out of their comfort zones. Use group activities that pair team-building exercises and games to generate camaraderie—those in which there’s no right way to participate are ideal.
- Focus on relationships. Rather than leapfrog past an actual experience to the point of reflection, give group members enough time to immerse themselves in a team-building activity and appreciate each others’ contributions. These connections can result in increased resource sharing, idea generation and mutual support.
- Surprise them. Creating play space is about more than just having fun. It also entails stretching people beyond their customary ways of thinking and behaving. Identify ways you can provoke new perspectives and provide disruptive team-building experiences, such as asking the team to solve scenario-based dilemmas or reconfiguring teams.