The business world has changed dramatically since the advent of the Industrial Revolution. The nature of work for modern workers has become increasingly specialized, isolating, and impersonal. Although technology has made it possible to increase human productivity, effective human collaboration is still needed for long-term business success.
Since the start of the Industrial Revolution, the world of business has changed dramatically. The modern worker now has an increasingly specialized, isolating, and impersonal job. While technology has succeeded in making human productivity increase, effective human collaboration is most definitely needed for any long-term business success.
For effective communication, people need not necessarily be in the same place, though there is nothing to replace personal physical interaction for building good relationships and team bonding. Humans become more than just mere impersonal names on email distribution lists. They become a team which is working towards achieving a common goal in the work place. Employees become more active and cohesive to accomplish shared goals.
The competitive nature of the business world means companies must adapt quickly and solve logistical issues creatively. Collaboration allows teams to see and grab opportunities as markets change. Employers who want to increase collaboration use both internal and external opportunities to build team spirit. If workers aren’t comfortable sharing ideas and contributing to group projects, the team goals will not be aligned and the resulting efforts will be ineffective.
As companies have grown larger and more complex, many businesses have looked to the military as well as the pioneering history of bygone settlers for managerial inspiration. They saw that people who faced logistical and physical challenges together formed quick bonds of trust and developed effective problem-solving abilities as a team unit. People became highly motivated to achieve group success for their team unit.
Opportunities for team building have been adapted from these models to be applicable in the business world. One very interesting and entertaining exercise involves building and driving a covered wagon. Usually you will divide people into groups of 8 to 12 people and have them complete group assignments that are based on issues in the Old West.
Every team should design and build a closed wagon as specified in the technical specification. All the teams can buy the necessary supplies required to build the wagon from the budget allotted to them. They also work together to create there own team flag and camp song. Once the teams have completed constructing there wagon they should compete in a race using it.
Throughout this event, team members must practice communicating, decision-making, exercising leadership, and working in tandem. They practice problem solving in a group setting. People get a fun opportunity to develop trust in their teammates as they define roles and responsibilities to accomplish group challenges. The accompanying adrenaline rush from this activity’s speed and novelty is also chemically conducive to feelings of group camaraderie.
The benefit of team building activities is a more cohesive group of workers. During the activities, people are pushed out of their comfort zone and helped to push past limiting fears and mental barriers. In a safe environment, coworkers work together to become a cohesive team that is innovative and highly successful. Team building exercises can bond people in a company across departments. These exercises can also build links between a business and its partners and vendors. The skills developed in team building exercises overflow to the work environment making employees feel motivated and secure in group endeavors to reach shared goals.