What is team building?
There are several definitions for team building. A valid definition is provided by the Management Studies Guide website and is:
Team building refers to the various activities performed to motivate team members and increase the overall performance of the team.
Team building can also be defined as follows:
The ability to identify employees and motivate them to form a team that stays together, works together, and achieves goals together.
Team building is a general term for a variety of activities that are used to promote social relationships and define roles in teams and often involve collaborative tasks.
When people work together with the same interest, attitude, and perception to work together for a common goal, a team is formed. Each person equally contributes and performs his or her duties best to achieve the goals of the team and the organization. Team members work hard to meet the expectations of other team members and perform successfully.
A team cannot do its job well, unless and as long as each member is focused and serious about their responsibilities. For each team member, the team takes precedence, and personal interests take precedence.
Each member of the team must have enough motivation to show their best. Duties are not assigned to team members, but each member actively assumes tasks. They have to move forward and accept the challenge.
Let me give you an example:
Hamid and Shahram report to another member of the team who plays the role of team leader. The team leader has a lot of faith in these two and always appreciates and praises them in front of others. His team is ahead of other teams and will never fall short of their goals. The leader of this team never convinces Hamid and Shahram to take on new responsibilities, and they themselves seek to take on new responsibilities.
Why do you think Hamid and Shahram are always eager to work? The answer to this question is the various activities that their team leader has done to motivate them and get the best results from them. Explains what has been done here.
One cannot expect a team to be formed on its own, and even if several people come together with a common interest, they can build a successful team or continue as a team. The motivating factor plays a central role in team building.
We are all from the human race and love to be admired. Anyone who performs his or her individual, social, legal, and professional duties as expected should be praised in the eyes of others. Such a person will have enough motivation to improve their performance even better than it used to be. On the other hand, disrupting the motivation or ill-considered punishment of a person who has failed in his duties can also be very harmful.
Examples of activities that can lead to a good team building:
- Put trust between team members on the agenda and constantly encourage it.
Team members must trust each other for maximum output. For example, close the eyes of half of the team members and ask them to help and guide half of the other teammates to do a specific activity that is somewhat risky. Repeat this exercise and change the position of the team members this time. Such exercises are more useful than you think in building team trust. The person may be a little hesitant at first, but the moment he or she does his or her teammate’s work without being hurt, he or she will begin to trust him or her. The trust factor increases over time and relationships between team members improve.
- Team members need to know other members well. You can’t work with someone you don’t know.
There are many exercises for team members to get to know each other better. For example, put team members in front of each other two by two and ask them to say whatever they know about the other person. Ask them to write about their favorite color, favorite pastime, and other interests, and correct each other if they are wrong. Such exercises allow team members to learn interesting facts about each other. Ask each newcomer to briefly introduce himself or herself to others.
- Team members must be consistent with each other.
Activities, such as group walks, can be helpful because they allow you to get to know each other and communicate freely with each other. Let people bring their families too. In this way, people become much closer to each other and relationships improve. As a team leader, remember important dates about the individual themes of your team, such as date of birth, date of marriage, or any other important date that is important to that person, and don’t forget to do what you need to do on that date. Design the space and work environment so that team members interact with each other and take the slightest sign of misbehavior seriously.
- Encourage activities that bring people together as a single team and work together.
These activities do not necessarily have to be in the realm of the duties or expertise of team members, and can even be designed as a game or an object. For this purpose, provide equipment such as nails, ropes, sticks, rods, etc. to team members and ask them to make something. You will be amazed at how well people participate, whether you are good or bad, and you will get to know your team members better and help them get to know each other better. The focus and ability to do the work increases and people learn to work as an integrated unit.
Why team building:
Team building activities are very important because they contribute to the overall development of each member of the team and in turn improve team performance. This strengthens the bond between employees and it is felt that there is an incentive to work and achieve goals.
Carrying out team building activities is not temporary and once, but as long as the team is working, all kinds of team building activities should be selected and done purposefully, to encourage team members to work hard and realize their dreams. .
The purpose of team building:
- Reduce costs and increase company productivity
- Optimal use of team member skills for a common goal
- Reduce conflicts between team members
- Better project control
The challenges ahead are team building:
- Team building should be used as a trick in an organization that seeks to “quickly fix” weaknesses and problems in its human communication or inefficient leadership system, which will lead to the creation of unproductive teams without a clear reason and path to success..
- Teams are assembled to solve specific problems, while their root causes are ignored.
- Dyer and colleagues have highlighted three challenges for team builders:
- Lack of teamwork skills: One of the challenges leaders face is finding team-oriented employees. Most organizations rely on educational institutions to teach these skills to students. However, Dyer believes that students are actually encouraged to work separately and succeed without cooperation. So plan to teach your teamwork to your employees and make team building one of the company’s main and permanent activities.
- Virtual Workplace and Organizational Physical Boundaries: According to Dyer, employees who are not physically in an organization work together more and more, but are usually unable to establish fundamental relationships with other members. Face-to-face communication is very important in creating an effective team environment. Face-to-face communication is the key to building trust. Forming formal team building meetings with a mentor as a facilitator can increase the sense of agreement in individual communication between team members.
- Globalization and Virtualization: Teams increasingly include members with different languages, cultures, values, and problem-solving approaches. One-on-one meetings can be effective in some organizations.
10 important principles in team building:
Team members must be the primary target of a committed team and must consciously take responsibility for being part of the team and what is assigned to them.
Define a specific goal:
From the very beginning, the goal of the team must be clear, and we must make sure that all members of the team understand and accept this goal.
Define communication and how team members work:
Team building does not mean creating a wild west and leaving people on the playing field to define the relationship between them as they wish. A team leader wants to manage communication, achievements, challenges and facilities and make sure the team is on the right track.
Each member of the team must have constructive relationships with the other members, and what they think and what they do can be understood by others.
Determining the framework for resolving team conflicts:
The best teams also have or will have conflicts. It is important that managers from the beginning have adopted an accepted framework and defined efficiency for resolving team conflicts. These solutions can be helpful in facilitating, creating a feedback system, individual or group coaching, performance appraisal centers, and more.
Teams are formed around a goal, but they themselves make subsequent decisions to achieve the goal and adjust their performance. It is important that each member of the team is proficient in decision making and actively participates in it. Team leadership, of course, plays a role in generating data that is useful for better decision making, as well as managing decisions.
Moving within a specific time frame and taking action according to previous planning is very important in the success of teamwork. People’s energy and motivation around a common goal must be maintained.
Problem solving skills are a very vital tool in teamwork tools. By improving this skill, team members can taste success faster and better.
Success deserves rewards. Successful teamwork is a great example of success that must be rewarded.
There are moments in teamwork that may seem impossible to continue. In these moments, the spirit and commitment to follow can be the savior of teamwork.
Fortunately, we have a lot of useful solutions to help the team work better. Using software can be a significant help in increasing team productivity, solving problems and reducing time and cost.
There are a variety of team building methods that can be used as a workshop for employees and individuals to learn the basics of teamwork. I have had the honor of conducting mentoring workshops focusing on team building at Sharif University Employment School, which continues at other companies and academic centers.