Many companies shy away from sponsoring team building activities because these are often seen as expensive and logistically difficult. This is truer now, ever since the pandemic forced companies into a work from home setup. For LegalMatch Philippines, employees are now working from homes in different locations. Gathering them together for face-to-face team building activities would involve airfare, hotel accommodations, and local transport services. But companies all over the world are slowly seeing why team building activities are beneficial to their corporate goals, especially for those whose employees work remotely. These are some of the reasons.
It Fosters Rapport and Unity
It is easy for remote workers to fall into a task-based work system, where they do not see the big picture. After all, they are just looking into their monitors and while video conferencing meetings are done regularly, these are often perfunctory and do not build rapport between team members. For example, many virtual teams do not know that their counterpart in the southern US or the Philippines have been hit by a tropical cyclone. Many do not even know if their teammates have children or are married or that their households have been hit by COVID-19.
Close rapport between teammates results in smooth workflows and strong support system, where one is willing to take up the slack when something personal (or a natural disaster) hinders the other from performing duties.
It Improves Productivity and Collaboration
From the reason cited above, the natural progression would be higher productivity. Harmonious working relationships are built when there is trust and compassion between team members. Carefully designed team building activities which balance the getting-to-know process and learning team strategies work well. Fun activities prove to be effective in underscoring company policies, work processes and communication better than any email memo. Productivity becomes less of an individual achievement but a team collaboration.
It Allows Discourse and Blossoming of Creativity
The Greek philosophers who espoused the importance of discourse in idea generation got it right. Of course, anyone can come up with bright ideas, especially when we are all masters in our own fields. But ideas that are bounced off the brains of other team members become more nuanced, well-rounded and effective. Team-building activities with ample opportunities for discussions of common challenges and issues result in innovative solutions. Some would say, don’t replace the wheel when it is not broken. But what if the wheel itself needs to be broken because there is a better wheel that will make us arrive faster at our desired goals?
It could be a Venue to Discover Leadership Potential
Many a company, even one as strict as LegalMatch Philippines in hiring quality professionals, forget that employee growth is a must for sustainability. It is not enough to hire the best, but to keep the best from finding greener grass elsewhere. During team building activities, natural leaders often come out of the woodwork and managers must be able to spot them. They must be able to jumpstart them towards achieving their potential as future leads and managers. After all, it is easier to hire internally those who know already work processes and organizational goals.
It Provides an Opportunity to Develop the Desired Company Culture
The importance of building a company culture that fits the corporate mission and vision could not be understated. Employees that see their company culture as empowering will be more loyal. Today companies strive to be equal-opportunity employers, emphasizing a work environment that recognizes differences in ethnicity, sexual orientation, identity and expression, human and democratic rights. A company culture that fosters good work ethics while celebrating individual successes is desirable indeed.
A Long-term Investment
In the pictures above, LegalMatch Philipines employees enjoy some of the team building activities that we conducted this year 2022. Cebu is a tropical paradise so, as soon as mobility restrictions were lifted, work teams went for a beach outing. Another team went on a karaoke night, celebrating the Cebuano love for music. A simple dinner at a good resto, when it is too hectic to plan anything bigger, also sufficed. Meanwhile, there are already plans for an online hangout for employees from other parts of the country to socialize with their teammates, while sipping their favorite drinks.
Investing on team-building activities is not a waste of money. In fact, in the long run, it saves the company the expenses of recruitment and training new employees, troubleshooting workflow bottlenecks and more.