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Team Building Activities For The Workplace - Ideas

Updated on June 27, 2011

Team Building Activities Are Morale Building

Done correctly, Team Building Activities boost morale, increase performance, instill a greater sense of 'belonging' within a company and consequently increase a company's profits.

Get it wrong and team building activities for the workplace end up crashing down like a house of cards, ending in arguments and petty squabbles and generally having the exact oppostite effect on your company to the one you intended.

Why?, because in many ways team building exercises for staff are no different from any other work related activity such as employee motivation, incentive schemes or general training ~ effectively you're trying to implement a one size fits all solution onto a work force with a range of personality types who will all react in different ways.

For a corporate team building day to be really effective it must reflect the needs of all stakeholders, from the company, through management and down the line to rank and file employees. If any of these points are missed there will be a disconnect in the team building event and in the resultant effect of that team building.

Why Organize Team Building Activities For Adults?

Team building activities for adults are a way of either changing behaviours you do not want, or reinforcing behaviours you do want. The first step in organising a team building day is to identify the behaviours you wish to change.

Are you trying to improve the lines of communication within the team, better sales results, identify who may be the leaders of the future or just trying to get people to work together better, for example after a merger.

The type of behavioural change you want to achieve will govern the type of team building event you choose, as should the type of personalities within your team, for example team building for sales people will probably have a different slant to team building for support functions, and a good team building events company will take into account all these things when advising on the right sort of event for you.

But what about if you want to do something local and on a budget?

Cost Effective Team Building Ideas

Team Building events are best held away from the usual distractions of the workplace. Hold them in a persons normal place of work and the chances are their minds will be focused on what they need to do in the office rather than the event you want them to concentrate on.

This doesn't mean travelling for miles or expensive locations, depending on the type of event you decide to do it could be a simple as hiring a conference room, going to a local park, or, if you are a multi-site company you could make use of another part of your business

Whether you're looking for team building activities for the workplace or corporate days out, the key to a good event is that it needs to be both enjoyable and informative. Spending the day making your work force do things they hate is not the way to get the best out of them.

The Internet is full of ideas you can use for team building exercises and here are a few to get you started - all can be adapted to your particular situation.

Ideas for Team Building Games to Improve Communication


Ideas to Improve Communication:

Communication is all about listening, interpreting information and passing that information on in a way the person you're communicating to will understand. Some people need things written down and for some it's better if they see a demonstration.

A good way to highlight the need for better communication is the see, hear and speak game.

Take 3 people and split them into a groups of 2 and 1 and move them apart so the person on their own has their back to the other 2 ~ for example sit them on the other side of the room.  Blindfold one person with the group of 2.

Give the person on their own an object to describe and the group of 2 the components of that object for them to make ~ this can be something as simple as a face drawn onto a balloon where the group of two are given a deflated balloon and colouring pens.

The person on their own with the completed object is not allowed to speak and can only give instructions writing ~ either by holding up large pieces of card or by having a 4th person to act as a runner between the groups.

The person with the object must communicate well enough for the person within the group of 2 who can see to be able to direct the blindfolded person to make the object.

This highlights the need for precise communication.

Another good quick game is multiple balls.

Stand everyone in a circle and make sure either everyone know each others names or are wearing name badges. Start with one ball and randomly throw it between the group ensuring the person throwing the ball calls out the name of the person they are throwing it to before they throw it so that person is expecting it. Once everyone has thrown and received the ball introduce a 2nd ball and repeat the process. Keep adding balls to the point the confusion of so many names being called at the same time causes the game to break down.

This is especially good for demonstrating to line managers what happens if they just keep chucking tasks (balls) at people without checking to see if they're ready to accept them).

Idea for Teamwork Team Building Activities

Like most learning, people will learn more if they are also enjoying themselves so fun team activities are a must. This one takes a bit of brain power and lateral thinking before hand but is one of my favourites as it takes everyone through the levels of working alone to working as a team.

This can also be adapted as a good team building ice breaker.

Pick a topic or series of topics that everyone in the room will know about for example if you have a wide range of ages in your team you could pick music or confectionery ~ it needs to be something that will have changed through out the years.

Write a list of words associated with the topic ~ 30 - 50 is best and if you're using music you could use the names of groups i.e. Meatloaf or if using confectionery items use the names of sweets i.e. Mars.

Then write a cryptic description of each - for example for Meatloaf you might write something like 'Evening meal for carnivoares' or for Mars '4th planet from the sun'.

To start the game give everyone a list of the cryptic clues and give them 10 mins to work on them alone. Most people will get a few this way. After 10 mins put them into groups of 2 for another 5 or 10 mins so they can collaborate. Keep increasing the group sizes until either a group completes the task or the group includes everyone in the team. With everyone working on the problem the team should be able to complete all the answers.

This can also be a great ice-breaker task for the beginings of conferences or seminars as it gets everyone working together without them really realising it.

Advantages of Team Building Activities In The Workplace

Running effective team building activities in the workplace keeps your employees engaged, focused and working well together. The results can be seen in increased efficiency and productivity, and ultimately, in the company's bottom line.


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    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Thanks Sima and Hadi for wonderful proargms. It was good to see a real example a successful person with self-confidence who is not afraid of hardships and knows what she is aiming for and achieves it!Dear Alireza, and others, please send the link to this program instead of emailing the audio files. This way others get to know our podcast too. Thanks so much.

    • AzikSparx profile image


      8 years ago from Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia

      I like see, hear and speak game. I have may own version of that kind communication game namely Re-transform the object. All participant 5-7 people stand make a line. I call the first player and show them an Object (could be a picture, a thing, could be anything. The player must inform the thing he or she saw verbally to other player and the last player must re-transform the information got with the material prepare. Its very simple but could train a good and effective verbal communication


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