It’s inevitable: you spend a significant amount of your time with your coworkers. During that time, you collaborate with these colleagues on everything from major projects to quotidian tasks. Because of the time and trust required for effective collaboration, it is critical that you have positive relationships with your colleagues. In turn, these relationships will make your company stronger, more efficient and more successful.
Though building relationships is motivated and guided by individuals, companies can help by providing relationship-building opportunities in friendly, fun and relaxed environments in contexts other than the office. An organization can only benefit from strong internal relationships. What are some activities and opportunities that your company can offer to their employees?
- Corporate Volunteering
By volunteering together, colleagues can connect with one another by collaborating on tasks and challenges outside of their usual work. Corporate volunteering has the added benefit of contributing to a good cause and engaging in the local community, while providing an activity free of internal pressure for employees.This activity also has benefits for your company as a whole: studies show that corporate volunteering can boost employee retention and morale, and improve a company’s external image. Read more in our blog post on corporate volunteering.
- Logic or Puzzle Activities
An outing that includes solving puzzles can be excellent team-building opportunities. By engaging in activities that involve strategy or logic, coworkers will learn to work together on intellectual challenges. They will also recognize the mental strengths in one another. Games like the popular Escape Rooms, which involve solving interactive puzzles within an hour time limit, are good options as they can accommodate groups.
- Entertainment-Based Outings
Though the phrase “team-building” often invokes images of a day-long retreat or intense collaboration among colleagues, team-building activities can also be as simple as spending a day out on the town with staff. Social interaction without the stress of the office can work wonders for professional relationships.For example, suggest attending a baseball game, going bowling or simply heading out to dinner after work. Venues should be reasonably close to the office, so it is not too much of an effort for other staff members to attend. These activities may also be after-hours, and as such must be optional.
- Staff Picnics
In the summer months, stepping out of the office and into the sun can be a perfect respite from work. Allow colleagues to enjoy this together by planning a staff picnic. Providing classic picnic fare such as hot dogs, hamburgers and chips is also an easy way to boost employee morale.
Schedule a picnic for the middle of the day to allow colleagues to break together, or hold a company picnic on the weekend and suggest that staff bring their families. Inviting employees to introduce their families to one another is another way to foster relationships, as it allows colleagues to learn more about the family lives of others and connect on a more personal level.
Do you and your colleagues benefit by spending quality time together? For more on the effectiveness of team-building activities, check out Mashable’s blog post “Company Outings: Waste of Time or Great Investment?”