Whilst our teams work together daily and likely spend more time with one another than they do their families, it is often hard for bonds to form as the typical hectic day to day workload takes precedent. The pressure and stress of the busy daily routine actually put strain on relationships and often there isn’t time to chat and get to know one other. Subsequently team bonds can be weakened, small cliques can form and the overall team connection is lost.
If you’re a manager it is your responsibility to help with team bonding. You are in a position to facilitate team building opportunities and social strategies. Ideally different initiatives away from the day to day work environment where your staff can get to know each other and build trust and rapport.
There has been lots of research carried out proving that team building can help employees feel valued and increase their motivation, which subsequently results in a stronger work ethic. It helps team members to become more aligned and increases communication. Studies by Harvard Business School and the American Psychological Society, for example, have proved that a connected team is a motivated team.
Team building initiatives could include a day creating graffiti art, bowling, treasure hunts, making face masks, group meditation, designing aromatherapy oils, make-up lessons, personality testing and sushi making, to name a few. Use your imagination as a manager and continually inspire your team by providing opportunities to unite them.
Another vital way of uniting your team is through communication, which is generally considered to be the most important aspect in the smooth running of any business. By getting the team to learn more about each other through your team building initiatives you can expect the team to have more respect for one another, better trust and understanding and ultimately better communication. Encourage your team to communicate by coordinating team meetings, daily briefings, newsletters, memos, noticeboards and social media platforms.
Communication can be instrumental in improving rapport and team spirit. To see colleagues support one another, treat each other with respect and cooperate with one another is vital. If a team is pulling together they can achieve more. If the team are driving the business forward as a solid unit, the consequences will be evident in the revenue and quality results.
‘We are only as strong as we are United, as weak as we are Divided’.
JK Rowling from her book Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire