Team Building Program
How does a team building program make a team better?
To get the best performances from a team you need to somehow instil accountability, cohesiveness, purpose and collaboration. But normally you will start off with a team that has just formed and is therefore rather dysfunctional. How do you make this group into a productive team? Once they are a productive team, how can you make them better? This is how a team building program can help you.
The starting point of a well-organized team building program is to understand what a team actually is. You can have a discussion about this and work out what kind of team the individuals want to be involved in. Then you can look at where the team is at the moment and where it wants to be and work out a program to get them to their goal. You should understand how your team is falling short at the moment in order to work out the path needed.
Then there is some work to do on communication. Communication is the centerpiece of team building as if you can't communicate with each other then you will never know what is wrong and how people feel and thus what is affecting their performance. Good teams are able to give each other positive and negative feedback and be able to get through problems quickly and chase opportunities effectively. For this to happen, each individual's behavior style should be identified, and a program needs to be produced so that the individuals can adjust their style to communicate well with each other.
Communicating is about speaking yes, but it's also about speaking. You need to be able to focus on the person who is speaking, have the capacity to empathize with what they are saying, analyze this message and then know how to respond. A strong team building program will engage each individual in numerous rounds of practice listening, so that they can focus on their more significant challenges.
Then you should cover question forming skills - so that you can ask open-and closed- ended questions and when to use them to make sure they understand the speaker. You should also learn to finesse language in order for what you want to say to be received better in conversations as well as when you write. For instance, it's important to know how to say "no" without offending people.
Obviously, you'll meet difficult people - you'll end up in teams with whiners, backstabbers, "negaholics" and minimal contributors. You need to learn to manage relationships with these people.
The final part of a team building program should be some sort of exercise where only acting as a team and a cohesive group can lead to success. This brings all other aspects of the program together.