With much of the northern hemisphere about to return to school amid continued uncertainty about the current COVID19 pandemic, it is clear that many schools…
It can be tough to be a manager, especially of large teams. You’re focused on looking after your team, but who’s looking after you and sharpening your saw? This article will share ten essential ingredients of managing successful teams and a bunch of fun and simple-to-use management team building activity ideas you can use today.
Your employees are more than just a group of people thrown together who happen to work in the same place. When managed well, they can perform like a well-oiled machine, a team, working together towards a common goal (which you will note below is one of the key ingredients of success.)
This does not mean that every person in every team likes each other. Rarely. But the key behind every successful team is their ability to manage conflict gracefully. And this is where your role as a manager is so crucial. With your guidance and the delivery of occasional team-building programs, you can expect your team to work more cohesively together.
There are volumes written about what constitutes a successful team. Let me save you a lot of time – here’s is my top ten list of attributes, of every successful team I have either managed or lead over the past 30 years.
The following activities have been chosen for three reasons: they are easy to present, they work for almost all types of groups and ages and they are perfect vehicles for team managers to actively participate as well.
The activities are listed in order of difficulty, starting with the simplest to the most complex or dynamic.
When your team discovers and understands the fact that every team member is an individual and has many things in common with others, things just work more smoothly. This exercise is a simple no-prop style exercise that helps people discover many attributes that they share in common with others and those which they don’t. Fun and useful as a conversation starter to build relationships.
Humans are wired to connect, and when we do, everything just works better. This is a great example of one of our many team building icebreakers for meetings to help your team get to know one another better, in a fun, non-threatening way. You start by announcing something that you like or have done, and then the first person to link arms with you to suggest that they, too, have done this can announce the next connection opportunity. Expect lots of laughter and good vibes from this one.
You’ll need a little bit of open space for this active exercise, enough space to form a large circle by holding hands. Expect many bursts of spontaneous laughter, but JIJO is more than just a fun time – look for opportunities to discuss effective leadership and what is means to say one thing but do another. The video tutorial for this exercise is our most viral yet, check it out.
You may have heard about this popular team-building exercise, but never participated in it. Be sure to get involved if you choose to present it to your team. In small groups, your team will be invited to create the tallest possible structure they can in 20 minutes using limited resources. Expect to discuss issues about assumptions, roles, leadership and problem-solving.
This is a truly fun, highly-interactive team-building group initiative, but it’s also a wonderful metaphor for how teams work, or not. In short, your team is asked to coordinate their movements to follow a series of consecutive patterns of spots on the ground, all at the same time. As your team’s leader, observe what happens during the planning stages and when frustration sets in. Be prepared to lead your group to a successful resolution and help them understand how they can manage these issues themselves, ie without you.
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