Corporate team building defined
Performing team building activities is a common corporate strategy to improve relations and productivity in the workplace. A business will not be successful if the employees are failing to work cohesively as one unit. Team building activities can help colleagues bond with one another and work together towards a common goal through communication, trust and patience outside of the office. That is the key: they are not doing their everyday tasks, but are in another environment faced with unique challenges that can ultimately help them when at work.
Why is corporate team building important?
Most people learn that working together as a team is important when they are young; countless group projects are assigned at an early age, encouraging children to get along with each other. Team building activities involve getting out of everyone’s comfort zones and in an entirely new situation in which teamwork is still needed. This way, they can take what they learn and apply their newfound knowledge and skills when they are back in the office. Not only will colleagues acquire a better understanding of one another, but they may also learn more about themselves, their strengths and their weaknesses. This can result in developing better problem solving skills, as well as innovative thinking, which can ultimately increase a business’ bottom line.
Though team building is not necessarily something that people jump for joy for, it is a way for everyone – no matter what their corporate position is – to be on the same level and figure out how to communicate efficiently. Whether a business is large or small, it is inevitable that some people’s voices can get lost in the mix. Team building forces those people to express their opinions, and their colleagues to listen.
Many businesses plan team building trips. One of the most important aspects of organizing a corporate team building trip is choosing the proper activities that employees will get the most out of. Otherwise, there isn’t a point. Some teams may excel more with problem solving situations, such as a survival exercises in which groups will have to decide what they should do in a certain situation in order to stay alive, while others may maximize their full potential through activities, such as scavenger hunts. Corporate travel planners should look into destinations that provide the best services and team building options.
Planning a successful trip
When arranging a corporate team building trip, choosing the right destination plays a major role in whether or not the trip will be a success. There are several different travel companies in which team building is popular, including Royal Caribbean International and Norwegian Cruise Line—both of which are preferred partners with InteleTravel.
However, Club Med Resorts—the only all-inclusive resort in the United States and another one of InteleTravel's preferred partners—is known for its team building activities. Lisa Hamilton, Business Development Manager for Club Med, states, “Club Med is extremely activities oriented.” Ms. Hamilton goes on to say that a team building program called CREACTIVE just opened this past June by Cirque du Soleil in Punta Cana. Guests can experience team building in a completely new way, being able to participate in up to 30 acrobatic and artistic exercises. In regards to this new program, Hamilton adds, “It has several different areas in the park that we’re using for different types of team building events.” Such activities include fixed trapeze, acrobatic bungee, stilt walking and vertical wall climbing. Plus, there are other activities that are not as physically demanding, including juggling, devil sticks and face painting.
There are 3 major themes explored—Nurturing Creativity, Taking Risks and Exceeding Limits—and 5 sections in the Cirque du Soleil park—The Acroplex, La Piste, The Trapeze and The Big Top. Each section focuses on specific activities related to those themes that can help colleagues better understand each other and work together in a more cohesive manner. The exercises are chosen depending on the size of the group, as well as the group’s goals. For example, participating in a group balancing exercise or Spanish web activity encourages creativity and exceeding limits. On the other hand, face painting promotes creativity, as well as taking risks.
The Cirque de Soil sessions are about 2 to 3 hours, with an acrobatic activity, artistic activity included, as well as introductions and final thoughts.
Other activities that guests can participate in not only in Punta Cana, but other Club Med destinations as well include sailing, archery and yoga. Groups can even have a coordinator assist them in keeping them organized and on schedule.
Speaking of other locations, Hamilton also discusses Club Med’s Sandpiper Bay location in Florida that offers fun team building exercises. Splitting into groups and building your own sail boat out of cardboard is one popular activity. Guests have a certain amount of time to build their own sail boat and then they have to race their boat against the other groups. This is great for improving communication among a group.
Having the job of planning a corporate team building trip for your colleagues can be stressful. However, there are several resorts that accommodate their guests and offer them helpful, unique exercises in which guests are able to get the most out of their trip and bond with their co-workers.