Regular and casual team-building activities may be more effective for a morale boost compared to larger-scale events planned once a year.


How important is team-building within an organisation?

Team-building is an effective way for an organisation to improve communication between colleagues, and between employees and upper management. It is also a great opportunity for an organisation to define its DNA and company culture to new and existing employees. Well-organised events and exercise can often help employees identify their weaknesses and work towards improving themselves and their contribution to a company.

What are some team-building activities that have become more popular in Asia?

When thinking of team-building events, remember they don’t necessarily need to be an annual, large-scale event. In fact, regular smaller gatherings can be equally, if not more effective than waiting an entire year, which is often too late for a morale boost. Think of small-scale regular functions where staff can get to know each other on a personal level and not just within the work environment. It could be a Friday after-work barbecue or dinner and drinks, but these occasions should not be used for business announcements, as it will defeat the purpose.

For bigger events, sporting or physical activities have traditionally been popular due to its competitive nature. However, depending on the diversity of your workforce, this may not be the most suitable option for an organisation. Team-building activities should encourage office-wide participation, so whenever you implement a team-building activity, everyone in the company should be able to participate. Cooking and music-related activities have become popular, as they are fun, easy to organise and are often all-inclusive.

Benefits aside, what are some things companies should bear in mind when organising team-building activities for employees?

Team-building should be fun. This is extremely important as nobody will buy into an activity if it’s laborious or boring, so get creative. There will also be more enthusiasm if it’s exciting and unique. If the activity does not involve a learning process or thinking skill, then managers should think of a way to incorporate them. Allowing free and open communication also helps everyone see vantage points they may not have considered.

How can managers better measure the effectiveness of team-building?

The organising committee needs to define and set the goals/objectives it wants to achieve before the event. Once defined, the indicators act as benchmarks to determine the effectiveness of the team-building event. It could be improving absenteeism or the attrition rate in an organisation, or increasing sales and improving customer service – it’s important to have your data ready before the event and then work continuously on those benchmarks.