Checklist for Trainer in Team-Building Exercises

1. Every participant is different, and every one of them has a different level of understanding and emotional condition when they begin the course. Research your audience, for example you want to use a certain element in an exercise but you may discover that one participant has a phobia for that particular element. Be prepared before encountering these awkward situations. Don’t base your research only on age; you may be surprised by the results.

2. Always buy more resources than planned. You can never know what part of your logistics may fail you, what material may break before or during or the way the participants will handle the resources.

3. Adapt your teaching style and the learning styles of the participants. Remember everyone is different and understands things in a certain way. People may react differently in different contexts.

4. Timing is essential. Offer time for discussions, recreation and the unexpected. Don’t group together too many physical exercises. The best proportion for a team-building program includes: 33% physical exercises, 33% experiential learning and 33% discussion and traditional exercises.

5. The scope of a team-building is to reach certain objectives. Remember them when choosing an activity. Don’t choose an exercise because it is funny or popular but because it covers a need of a team or reaches an objective of the team-building.

6. Allocate sufficient time for the team-building. A well prepared training can take from 2 to 5 days. If the time allowed is less than half a day then it beats the point of the entire team-building.

7. BANG at the beginning and end. Start the team-building with well-prepared icebreakers that will set the mood for the course and allow people to relax and fin a comfort zone. At the end of the sessions, inspire and motivate them to set in action the lessons learned during the course of the activities.

8. Make a logistics list, prepare your material ahead of time, double-check them and learn to use materials that you haven’t worked before.

9. Debrief after each exercise and ask participants to make notes of their conclusions in a Learning Log.

10. Never presume that everyone will be able or accept to do a certain task, especially if it implies a risky activity. Prepare sub-task, which a person can handle.

11. Everyone is equal during a team-building, therefore do not allow participants put pressure or hassle other participants. Often, people in management positions give orders just because of their position outside the game. Do not hesitate to remind everyone this is a group activity, where everyone has the same position.

Office Team Building Exercises

There are many different kinds of office team building exercises that can be used to help improve your company’s internal communications, morale, trust, and cohesiveness. Team building exercises are undertaken in a spirit of fun, but also play an important role in strengthening your ability to function as a unit.

Team building exercises can be used occasionally, such as to augment your annual general meeting, or on a more regular basis to help maintain productivity. They can also be used as a form of crisis management, such as to help address fears during a period of change, or as a response to a need for radical restructuring in order to meet the challenge of a new competitor, for example. Team building is useful for introducing new employees, strengthening ties between existing staff, or as a fun way to bring together individuals who don’t often interact.

Having your team members work together in any endeavor that takes them out of the ordinary office realm can be an interesting exercise in communication and cooperation. To facilitate this, consultants often organize activities that use arts, sports, games, or any structured form of interacting that requires teamwork. In some cases this creates a visible, or otherwise tangible example of what you can accomplish together – such as each person playing a percussion instrument that all together creates a piece of music; linking arms to create a chain that demonstrates the importance of each individual link, and so on. In other cases, the activity requires brainstorming and the combined effort of all to solve a problem.

The dual purpose of having fun and learning together makes for a day that is relaxing and enjoyable in itself, as well as providing lasting results as you develop your skills as a team. A large amount of research has gone into the development of specialized programs, books and services that can help your company achieve its productivity goals and improve employee relations. The wide variety of creative solutions offered includes everything from cooking together, to outdoor adventures, scavenger hunts to simulations of extreme sports… Take some time to explore the possibilities and find new ways to enhance your office environment.

Browsing the websites of consultants is a good place to start to find some fun ideas you can implement yourself, or with the help of a professional. Most programs are designed for maximum flexibility and can be tailored to meet the needs of almost any group, large or small. Incorporate some creative team building into your next boardroom meeting, or be extra adventurous and arrange for some outdoor activity. The return on investment is not something to take lightly. The benefits of maintaining an enjoyable work atmosphere includes improved mental and physical health, higher productivity, and more. Find out what the right team building exercises can do for you.

5 Team Building Exercises to Develop a High Performance Team

Team building exercises can be a critical component to developing a high performance team. The following are five simple exercises that can help your team build trust and optimize collaboration.

Egg Drop
Provide a team of three to five people with 1 egg, several straws, masking tape and other materials that might protect an egg (paper plates, cotton balls, popsicle sticks, etc.). Using these materials the team’s goal is to create a structure (such as a landing pad) that will prevent the egg from breaking when dropped from a height of 7 ft.

Lap Sit
The entire group stands in a circle shoulder to should. An instructor has everyone turn 90 degree so they are facing the back of the person in front of them. Next, have the group sit on each other’s knees. The goal is to produce a fully seated circle for at least 30 seconds.

Group Push-Up
The objective of this activity is for the entire team to figure out a way in which they can safely support themselves off the ground using their hands to steady the group. This is easiest performed in a group of four.

Toe to Toe
In groups of two, ask the participants to sit toe-to-toe and holding hands. The objective of the activity is to stand up while still maintaining toe-to-toe contact and holding hands. To make this activity more difficult, expand the size of the pair into fours and then sixes.