Good news! Team building doesn’t have to be mandatory, an exercise for outsiders, or every event involving a sporting event or beach ball. We mean, it can and often does (read on for the best team building ideas of the summer for work), but there are many more ways to discuss fun team building activities that work for all players in today’s work world.
Why is team building important?
Summer team building activities allow colleagues to connect friendships, personal growth and meaningful relationships with their work. Why is this critical?
- Good job: They invest thousands of hours of daylight (some even burning oil at midnight) to meet business goals. After that investment of energy, commitment and time away from family, no one wants to come empty handed, thinking about what they got from what they gave. Show employees that you see them and take care of them as individuals, which is important for retention and productivity, especially in a climate where many employees are remote.
- Enrichment for all: Employees who can collaborate with their colleagues mean more meaningful work, enhanced innovation, and better results.
What’s different about team building today?
The past few years have facilitated less, more meaningful interactions and a cultural and economic shift towards a workforce that spends more time working alone or from home. Employees are more independent, self-motivated and in touch with their intellectual, emotional and social needs in their work. As a result, fun team building activities are less about a structured “you know” event and more about meaningful, rich interactions with colleagues with a common interest or activity.
What are some corporate team building ideas that appeal to everyone?
Your event doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive to be great. The most important aspect of a successful team building activity is to think about it: Are the interests and preferences of different employees taken into account? Does every participant feel welcome? Diversity and inclusion are important.
- Movie Night or Matinee: Rent a screen and give the option of one or two movies in the same theater complex, so that all the team members can enjoy a show. Provide a family-friendly option for those who have children. Look for a theater that provides seat-side menu items during shows. Hand over personalized stadium blankets so staff can be comfortable and pick up a gift at home.
- Catered food: Many employees work from home, looking like “lunch hours” sleeping on couches or chips and diving into the kitchen counter. Invite your team to a meal that offers something for everyone. If your group is social, assign seating with a twist: each employee picks a number from a basket at the door to find out who is at their table. Be the CEO with whom you wanted to share your brilliant ideas and who turns out to be all ears; Task Master Project Manager who makes your life miserable against every deadline but runs a bulldog rescue outside their home; Or a web designer with a cutting sense of humor that will leave you sewn.
- Baby picture mash up: Provide employees with one sheet of their coworkers baby photo and another with a recent shot. Ask them to match beautiful kids with their current day peers. This team building activity appeals to workers and thinkers, who gave the gift of Gabe in a few words. The employee who got the most accurate matches, reward the teammate with the most beautiful baby picture, with the “ugly duck to swan” ride and less changed before and after.
- Favorites: Do this activity during zoom, picnic or dinner. Let employees vote to focus on what they love, their favorite songs, cities, sports teams, or family members. Make it meaningful and fun by offering incentives to share (encourage participation but don’t need it). A laser engraved stylus pen for all bloody details! A stainless steel tumbler for the most incredible story! Vote by applause or secret ballot of employees for the most gifted episode.
What do summer team building activities do for small groups?
A great way to encourage bonding is with small groups of employees who communicate every day. Often these interactions are remote, so getting together for physical activity can strengthen the bonds in real life that are virtual in most work weeks.
- Escape room: This forever popular team activity is great for summer team building or all year round. Escape Room Premise is a room with clues and codes, where tact, strategy, trial and error, patience, perseverance and a cool head in the face of stress are required. Escape Room lets staff know themselves and each other and quickly identify skill sets in real time. Perhaps, you and they will be surprised. And whether they like it or not, every employee will appreciate the unique experience of the escape room game. Take food or drink later and reward for the best noodle, the quietest under pressure, the least, the most interested, and the most violent in the final count-down.
- Park-based Scavenger Hunt: Pick a name from a basket and divide it into groups of three or four. Include comfortable and rich items for scavenging like logo napkins, receipts or coasters from a parked food truck or restaurant; A leaf from a native plant; And a selfie with a stranger.
- Rotating lunch: For direct reporting, ask an employee to choose their favorite luncheon spot for each group-making lunch, either monthly or quarterly to keep pace. Small groups get to know each other and get a good incentive to gain new cooking experiences while learning about their peers.
- Bay Cruise or Whale See: Keep the group small so that people can get together and enjoy the peace of the sea. Include plenty of snacks and drinks so guests don’t have to dare a rocking boat to find a refreshment table.
What are some team building ideas for work that seem natural, not awkward?
Here are some tips for building an easy-going summer team that everyone feels a little better about themselves, their coworkers, and their meaningful work:
- No story circles: Host a cruise on a harbor, a catered picnic, or an afternoon at a microbrewery. Include standing and seating areas so that employees can blend in and eat according to their comfort zone. Simplify social options where employees are comfortable and they will open without any prompt
- Don’t say “team building”: Some people appreciate an unannounced morale-building event. That way your more independent-minded workers don’t feel instructed to rejoice; All the bonds and good merriment seem organic.
- Give them alternatives: Some employees may ask for a cooking class while others prefer an escape room. Still others want box seats in local games. Ask for options and try to offer a number of events that speak to the preferences of all your talented team.
- Love food: Send a survey that asks employees what their favorite food is before your team building lunch or dinner. Surprise every employee with their favorite food. It’s guaranteed to have spontaneous conversations and storytelling (why, exactly, why, do you have to go ketchup with spaghetti?), And make everyone feel special.
What is a good gift for my corporate team building event?
A customized Kipsack ensures that every employee welcomes and recognizes your event. There are one or two options at hand for your team members to choose from. Options involve recipients and give your employees a special feeling. Just customize with your logo or include the name or date of your team building event. Distribute some gifts to all employees and customize others as rewards. To keep them in remembrance, we like:
Travel mugs and tumblers: Include your brand with the gift of drinking items made this summer at concerts, pool parties and campfires at the park.
Cooler bags and backpacks: Fun and functional, customized cooler bags and backpacks make colleagues feel great about your business and ready for all kinds of summer adventures.
Technical accessories: Who got the tune? Your team, of course. Send them home with a custom blue tooth speaker.
How can I make my summer team building activities a success?
People feel good about an event when they give up feeling good about themselves. Host events that do not force employees out of their comfort zone as long as they are there. Allow observers and actors to enjoy the event by feeling each personality at home. Sun and shade, music and quiet, providing hamburgers and raw veggies. Even if you don’t hit it right on Vegan Slow or Sloppy Joe’s, you’ve thought about all the members of your team and made an effort to connect with them and including them is the most important element of your event. Send employees a meaningful gift that celebrates your small business and their contribution to it.