The success of any organisation depends on the ability of individuals to develop and build effective teams. Team building activities is important to create a healthy team culture and a productive work environment. These activities we use to achieve this are merely the means to an end – a high-impact learning experience. It helps to break down various, for example limiting believes, racial, personal, etc., and provides experiences that empower individuals and teams to learn, transform and grow.
Outcomes of team building
- Build and improve professional relationships
- Breaking down of barriers
- Build trust between team members
- Facilitate better communication
- Motivate employees to share their ideas and take up challenges
- Increase team collaboration and productivity
- Help participants to learn more about themselves
- Identify and utilize the strengths of team members
- Identify and alleviate blind spots
- Facilitate continual improvement
- Help with goal setting
- Promote out-of-the-box thinking
- Develop problem-solving skills
- Positive reinforcement of team engagement
Adventure-related experiential learning (AEL)
AEL is a process (journey) through which a team constructs knowledge, skills and values from direct adventure and fun-related experiences, for example low-rope courses and team games. This creates the opportunity to map a path of new potential through in-depth reflection. Participants are actively engaged in this process to discover themselves, rather than being told the answer. This can lead to knowledge, change and growth through feeling, reflecting and purposeful and sustainable change. They are actively engaged in exploring questions they find relevant and meaningful. It’s about transferring and integrating lessons learned into daily life and the work environment.
AEL is an effective methodology of learning
- Learning should be about real life, not just preparing for living.
- Reality of the past vs today:
- Skills acquired through experience while growing up and war vs classroom.
- To discover by doing itself vs things being done for me.
- Prepare young people for life – leaving the harbour.
- Learning occurs when we change the way we feel, think, or behave (experience, reflect, transfer and maintain).
- The facilitator is however in the not-knowing position.
Experiential learning (EL)
- EL is a process through which a learner constructs knowledge, skills and value from direct experiences.
- EL is not just a set of activities.
- Participants are actively engaged in a process to discover themselves, rather than being told the answer.
- EL is not restricted to a particular set of goals – It is about the mind that must be activated.
- The fact that the process is designed in such a way that participants must discover for themselves, it therefore also creates the opportunity for the facilitator to learn.
- The process is more important than the outcome or goals set.
- It’s about looking in the mirror, taking stock, evaluating, making sustainable change and growing
- Providing minimum, but necessary structure, just to give enough assistance for participants to understand and make connections.
- Create experiences to similar real life situations that emerge from the group discussions.
- The capabilities of participants are not underestimated, because it is their journey.
- Self-discovery is more sustainable.
Challenge by choice
- Participants get to make choices about their level of engagement.
- Can partake or observe – This helps to relax and empower the participant.
- The choice someone makes can be a learning in itself.
- Choices create a feeling of safety and takes into consideration that not all people are the same.
- Choices show respect and that in itself can open doors for learning.
- Although very positive to give participants a choice, this choice can keep the student in a comfort zone where no learning can take place.
- Transferring integrates lessons learned into daily life.
- It is taking a new emotion, idea or act and applying it as a new feeling, thought or behaviour.
- Lessons must be practical and applicable to daily life and individual/group circumstances.
- Team building
- Team effectiveness
- Team refreshment
Did you know that higher team engagement will lead to better productivity and profit?
How well are the teams in your organisation working together and does it foster collaboration and innovation?