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Developing teams

Developing teams whether as part of wider development programme or internal team-building events can be a great way of bringing individuals together to develop, learn and have fun as a team. These events can not only be enjoyable on the day, but can also have a long-lasting impact on the effectiveness of the team and the wider organisation.  Whether you are working remotely or together on a campus there are benefits to taking some time out in order to reflect, review, develop and grow as a team.

The Developing your team session provides ideas, tips and tools to help you and your staff be the best they can be. If your staff are continually learning and developing you will reap rewards with a team that gains confidence, performs better and is more engaged in what is happening in the team and the organisation.

Events

In the first instance we encourage teams to develop events themselves, this can aid communication and working practices. See our Top Tips for Running a Team-Building Event to help focus your ideas.  Consider the purpose of the event, what do you want to have achieved by the end of the session? There are a lot of free resources available that you can use to develop all aspects of your team.  Our online learning portal LearnSmart contains lots of suggested activities, guides and ideas that you can use such as the LearnSmart Team Building Resources.

If you would like access to further resources on planning a team building event or away day you can access the following we have collated: What we learnt by putting on a hybrid away day details practical tips for arranging a hybrid away day and How to host a virtual away day provides a good guide to a completely remote one. A final reource offering some great practical tips for planning a team building day is Team Building Days: The Ultimate Guide 


Activities

Whilst holding a formal team building event or away day is one was to create social connections for your team and develop their ability to work together effectively, this is not the only option and is also not the best option for every personality style or personal circumstance. 

It can be as simple as in meeting activites like these fun examples from Learn Smart: Getting to Know the Team Better and Virtual Team Building Activities. We have also collated some icebreaker resources that you can build into your team meetings: a short video from Learn Smart Icebreakers25 Icebreakers for Remote and Hybrid Meetings; suggestions from MURAL and Slido on how to use their collaborative platforms to create icebreakers; and 25 Icebreakers for Virtual and Hybrid Teams.

It can also be as easy as setting up a virtual break room for your team or having a weekly meeting with your team to share what you are working on. QA have also detailed 5 ways to improve team communication from home whihc can help to support quick communication improvements for your team, and How to improve team realtionships which provides tips for preventing team conflict and improving morale. And for improving social connections wihtin your remote or hybrid team you can read; 11 Ways To Create Community In A Hybrid Work EnvironmentHow to keep people feeling socially connected across distances and timezones and Maintaining Social Connections in a Virtual, Hybrid Workplace

These further suggestions for how to socialise remotely and virtual team building activities can help you to build in social activites wiht your team that don't require you to be in the same physical space and may appeal better for any team members with travel concerns or time restrictions based on personal circumstances. The following resources from Snack Nation provide several suggestions for social events both within work time and outside of work time for your team which could appeal to a variety of different personality types and help to encourage all team members to join in: 27 easy ways to have fun at work and 79 Fun team building activities. Finally, we have found the following resources that provide suggestions for team social activites for when your team is working together in the office or for out of work social activities  as well as some Top tips for planning a social event.

Further to the general Virtual Team Building Activities and Remote Team Building Activities there are numerous collaborative tools available for you to continue team-building exercises remotely.  The key to success is making sure that everyone has access to and is able to use the technology or tools proposed, instructions are really clear and reflection/feedback is done in a considerate way.  Some possible options include:

Your Office 365 suite offers collaborative tools that can be used – the Digital Hub is a great place to find out more about what you can use in the collaborative space. Simply using the breakout rooms or the whiteboard function in Teams can create the basis for team activities. Mentimeter – a really easy to use platform which helps to create interactive presentations, meetings, quizzes and team building events with real time feedback/results.

We have also found the Virtual Guide to Gathering from Priya Parker which may enhance your virtual team meeting or team building excercise. Please also see further resources for hybrid team building activities for when some of your team are remote and some are in the office including: 10 Hybrid TeamBuilding Activities and 36 engaging hybrid activites.

People Development can help you design team sessions, conduct skills audits and training needs analysis, facilitate team activities and explore team profiles. Complete the initial query form and a member of our team will be in touch, options for development might include LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY®, Insights profiling or lighter team challenges/games.

Bespoke Training Enquiry Form

Profiling tools can be a useful for analysing personalities, dynamics and interactions. They are best used within a suite of development interventions and should always be supported with post assessment analysis in order to ensure the results are correctly interpreted and associated development identified. The People Development team have contacts with external organisations who can run sessions and profiling to support this area of development (for example MBTI and Insights). If you feel this might benefit you or your team please get in touch. Please be aware that there will be a cost attached to these activities that will need to be met through local/department budget.

Alternatively take the opportunity to develop the way your team works and give something back to the local community through a Community Challenge