I spend a few minutes each day contributing to various educational blogs and social media platforms.
In one post on TeachThought, a program provider from Romania lamented that many of their prospects tell them that ‘team-building is crap.’
Here’s an edited extract of my response:
“… in my professional experience, the #1 reason people believe ‘team-building’ does not work is because of a poor previous experience. And in all cases, when these programs are examined more closely, it is clear that the problem was a meaningless approach/rationale behind the program. If people view their ‘team-building’ program as a series of irrelevant exercises, divorced from their workplace or school, etc, then the program ends up just being (at best) an excuse to have a fun time. It is critical that all programs have a philosophical underpinning which provides the glue between the activity and the group’s ability to make sense of what they are doing. There are many philosophical elements, but in brief, I believe there are five key tenets – challenge by choice, valued participation, irresistible fun, a sequence appropriate to the needs of the group and finally, substantive debriefing or processing of the experience (to ensure learning takes place). I think you’ll find that people who refer to ‘team-building as crap’ are referring to programs that are missing at least one if not most of these core elements. For a more elaborate discussion of this philosophical framework go to www.playmeo.com/philosophy …”
In an earlier post, I shared that I’m not a fan of the word ‘team-building’ per se. However, regardless of the term used, why do some people have such a poor opinion of team-building?
What do you say, do you think team-building is crap?