No matter the industry, communication plays an important role in the day-to-day goings on of your business. However, communication does not come naturally to everyone, especially in this technologically-dependent day and age. Many young workers grow up relying on digital communication, such as email, text messaging, and instant messaging, never fully developing their interpersonal skills. However, the workplace, even that of IT companies, remains heavily dependent on teamwork and communication. According to Talent Management, 86% of employees blame lack of collaboration for workplace failures.
“The general consensus of the executives was that effective communication skills are more important now than ever before for business success,” say researchers James Bennet and Robert Olney, “and these skills will continue to be a critical component of the information society.”
According to studies conducted by MIT’s Human Dynamics Laboratory, communication is one of the most important factors of any successful team. So, the question on every business owner or manager’s mind – how do I improve inter-office communication and get my employees communicating?
Improving Teamwork and Communication
“Effective internal communications can keep employees engaged in the business and help companies retain key talent, provide consistent value to customers, and deliver superior financial performance to shareholders,” according to the Watson Wyatt Effective Communication 2009/2010 ROI Study Report.
While it may seem easy, effective office communication can take a bit of work. This is where Team Building comes into play. By putting your employees in situations that get them out of their comfort zone and encourage them to interact with their coworkers, we can help foster communication and teamwork. Then, following each activity, we sit down for a debriefing session to help relate these lessons back to the workplace. Having such a feedback loop ensures that your employees fully understands the intent of each lesson.It’s all about communicating effectively.
“We all need people who will give us feedback. That’s how we improve.” – Bill Gates
“Well-planned programs are delivered by capable facilitators who guide learning rather than dictate results,” says researcher Katherine Whitnah. “After the event is complete, proper integration ensures learning is transferred from the challenge course to the office.” This is also why team building is not a one-and-done activity. Follow-up sessions are recommended every three to six months to refresh these lessons. After all, practice makes perfect, right?
“When team building is coupled with follow-up sessions in which team building commitments are reinforced and renewed, the positive effects of the team building are prolonged,” writes researcher R. Wayne Boss.
Team Building by Professionals for Professionals
“Team developmental interventions are key mechanisms that may be used to facilitate team effectiveness,” writes Raymond Noe in Employee Training and Development.
Conveniently located between Baltimore and Washington DC, Terrapin Adventures is able to create a customized program (onsite or offsite, indoor or outdoor) to help better your business. Our programs provide for exciting activities that bridge the gaps in communication, improve collaboration, and expand your group’s problem solving skills. Through a series of unique and interactive activities, we will knock down communication barriers, allowing your staff to work efficiently and cohesively as a productive unit.
A 2010 study conducted by research Jenny Phan tested this notion with a particular emphasis on challenge courses. Phan evaluated and tested the benefits of these activities on 120 subjects. The results revealed that challenge courses and team building activities “impacted the participants at an emotional and social level,” and most participants saw a noticeable increase in their “emotional and social skills.”
If you have any questions, please call Terrapin Adventure at 301.725.1313, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.
- Bennett, J. C., and R. J. Olney. “Executive Priorities for Effective Communication in an Information Society.” Journal of Business Communication 23.2 (1986): 13-22. Web.
- Whitnah, Katherine T. A Phenomenological Inquiry: In the Context of Organizational Development, How Does Experiential Team Building in the Form of a High ROPES Course, Contribute to Positive Leadership Development, and How Can It Be Improved? Adler Graduate School. Web.
- Boss, R. W. “Team Building and the Problem of Regression: The Personal Management Interview as an Intervention.” The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science 19.1 (1983): 67-83. Web.
- Noe, R. A. (2002). Employee training and development (2nd ed.). Boston: McGraw-Hill.
- Phan, Jenny. “The Impact of Therapeutic Recreation through Ropes Courses and Teambuilding Activities.” Diss. 2011. Abstract. Print.