30 Nov 2017

Building an effective team

As a new leader of a student club or organisation, you will encounter team members that have different skill sets, thought processes and their own way of getting tasks done. You cannot expect a new group to work well together as soon as it is formed. This may be overwhelming, but don’t worry, it’s completely normal. For years now, group leaders have implemented psychologist Bruce Tuckman’s ‘Forming, Storming, Norming and Performing’ model. Following this model will help your team become an effective, high performing and productive group. To find out more about Tuckman’s model, click here.

Team building exercises can be used by any club, organisation or business, no matter their size. The use of these exercises provide many benefits to an organisation. Some of these include:

  • Improved communication within the team
  • Heightened team morale
  • Increased productivity
  • Get to know other team members
  • Identify other team member’s strengths and weaknesses

Below are a series of team building activities that aim to target key skills that are required for group cohesiveness and high productivity.

Communication activities – Communication plays an important role in a team environment. Poor communication skills can lead to many problems within an organisation, such as quality of work, missed deadlines and simple mistakes. Working with your team to build their communication skills as a whole will minimise these consequences, and it will help the team to build stronger relationships with one another. Some activities will focus on listening skills. Listening is an incredibly important part of good communication, and it’s a skill that people often ignore in team activities.

For a list of communication activities, click here.

Problem solving and decision making activities – Working to enhance your team’s problem solving skills will help them to achieve goals and objectives more quickly and efficiently, whether it be individual, group or the organisations. Decision making is involved from complex projects or problems, down to the smallest day-to-day issues. Therefore, it is imperative that as a leader, you strengthening your team’s ability to work together to solve problems, see others perspectives and ultimately commit to a decision is beneficial to your team.

For a list of problem solving activities, click here.

Adaptability and planning activities – In most industries, nothing is ever certain. For a company to be successful, it must be able to change with the times and adjust to what is necessary for the best interests of the company. It is important that your team has the ability to adapt to unexpected situations and be able to plan effectively for when these situations occur.

For a list of adaptability and planning activities, click here.

Trust building activities – Trust is an important attribute and quality within a team environment. The need for a team to be cohesive, cooperative and effective all stems from whether a team trusts one another, and whether the leader trusts their group.

For a list of trust building activities, click here.

References

Huddle.com. (2016). 10 quick and easy team building activities [Online]. Available from: https://www.huddle.com/blog/team-building-activities/. [Accessed: October 3, 2017]

MindTools.com. (2017). Forming, storming, norming and performing: Understanding the stages of team formation [Online]. Available from: https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newLDR_86.htm. [Accessed: September 19, 2017]