Wolves run in packs. Lions live in prides. Bees build hives. Geese fly in gaggles. But there is one species that has a stronger collective dynamic than any other on Earth – humans.

We live together in family units, work together in teams, and co-exist in communities. Historically, we are the most collaborative species that has ever walked the Earth. So, why is it so easy for us to get stuck in the “silo” mentality in our work lives? We are more than a hive mind. Each of us has our own special qualities that add value to our places of work. And when individuals bring their strengths together to collaborate and solve problems, the results are generally pretty good. 

Most of us will spend one-third of our lives at work. That’s an average of more than 90 000 hours in our lifetimes. Making the best of your working life is better for your mental health, job satisfaction, and self-esteem. Work is not just somewhere we go every day. It is a shared human experience, and (here comes the cliché), there is no “I” in team.  

Nurturing a strong workforce is in the best interest of your bottom line. According to the University of Oxford, happy employees are 13% more productive. Job satisfaction breeds higher productivity levels and better employee retention. And high employee turnover negatively affects your business’s profits. So, statistically, it just makes sense to cultivate a happier, more collaborative work environment. And an effective team building strategy is always a great start. 

To many managers or business owners, the concept of team building is seen as a “soft” exercise with little to no bearing on productivity or output. But motivated workers statistically outperform those who are not engaged. In case you’re not convinced, here are four team building goals can help you and your employees achieve better results. 

Stronger relationships

There is more to work than simply performing the function you’re paid for and going home. Nobody lives or works in a vacuum. But while we may greet our colleagues in a friendly way during an average day at work, it’s always important to remember that the people we work with have lives outside of the office too. We all have dreams and aspirations, stories to tell, and personal quirks that may not necessarily come out in everyday work interactions. 

Team building can bring out the often-surprising qualities in people who work together by throwing colleagues into collaborative situations that require more sensitivity or flair than their everyday jobs do. Team building challenges help employees collectively break out of their comfort zones and tap into skills that their colleagues may never have known they even had. 

Conquering challenges together in a fun, creative environment rather than working hard on a deadline in the real world also takes the pressure off. Team building is less about winning the challenges at hand than it is about getting employees to step out of their predefined roles and interact on a more personal level. This dynamic fosters empathy, belonging, and loyalty, which is carried over into the workspace. 

Better morale

We live in trying times. But none of us have to tackle everything life throws at us alone. When we have an innate sense of camaraderie, our work colleagues can become a family away from home when we need support or cheer us up when we’re feeling low. 

Ohio State University found that working in a group that includes friendships improves group performance because friendships foster trust and empathy. The office dynamic is simply better experienced together. Team building is a highly effective way to build friendships among colleagues. It takes the team away from their usual work settings and allows them to interact in a more social setting, where they will learn more about each other on a personal level. 

Laughing and having fun with your colleagues in team building exercises can get your serotonin up in the short term and provide an ongoing sense of happiness and belonging at work. Happiness is contagious. And sharing it with your colleagues makes the trip to work every day a far more attractive prospect. 

Water cooler talk, sharing lunch with your colleagues, and other bonding rituals unite us as one work “tribe.” Team building can build the basis for these interactions through collaboration. The camaraderie will almost certainly follow. 

Improved creative problem-solving 

A 2018 report cited in Psychology Today by Gerard J. Puccio suggests that creative problem-solving sessions with groups of people who had very basic training in creative tools produced 350% more ideas than groups who had had no training. And in the study, the ideas that emerged were 415% more original. 

What exactly is creative problem-solving? Well, it’s a multifaceted concept. In work situations where the unexpected happens, it is the ability to think beyond your everyday responsibilities and try solutions you may never even have considered before. It is the ability to see gaps in existing processes and streamline them because you have acquired the creativity to see everyday situations from different angles. 

Most importantly, creative problem-solving abilities encourage you to question your surroundings. Creative thinkers always want to know the “Why.” They do not simply accept things at face value. 

Team building goals should challenge your employees to access parts of their brains they don’t necessarily use in their prescribed roles because they require a combination of left and right brain thinking to overcome obstacles, awakening new neural pathways that can be of great value in the work environment.  

Better employee engagement

A recent report from global analytics and advice firm Gallup says that engaged employees produce better business outcomes than ones who aren’t engaged, irrespective of the industry type, size, or location. Yet the same report states that just 15% of employees globally are engaged, while only 35% in the U.S. are. 

When employees feel engaged, they feel a stronger sense of “belongingness” – the feeling that they are an important part of the greater whole. This feeling inspires a sense of support, helping with stress and taking away feelings of isolation. 

Team building nurtures the sense of belongingness by fostering interpersonal relationships because when a team is faced with a challenge outside of work that they must collectively tackle, they need to collaborate beyond the stresses of their everyday work roles to overcome the challenge. 

Fulfill Team Building Goals With Rockoly

In our increasingly-virtual world, Rockoly.com brings remote teams together by creating interactive, enjoyable experiences that are universally appealing and collaborative. Tell us about your team — we will match a perfect workshop and chef with you.

With Rockoly, you can choose from various interactive cooking workshops like pasta making, Mexican street food feasts, Spanish paella creation, wine tastings, and customizable culinary experiences. With Rockoly’s team building experiences, it’s all about what you put in – literally. We’ll get all your ingredients delivered to you, and your team can work together to create culinary magic — with a live chef — through a series of engaging activities that will get them all smiling again.

Getting started is easy — just visit Rockoly.com and click “Get Started.” Then you can tell us about your team building goals, choose the menu that suits you, and start cooking! We’ll tailor-make your event to suit your needs, catering to any and all dietary requirements your team members might have. Are you ready to bring your team back together? Get in touch today.

Nicola Killops

Nicola Killops

Nicola is a former teacher and lives in Johannesburg, South Africa. She now writes full-time, with her partner, Justin. Nicola loves food, music, travel, and is a proud human and pet mom.

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