There’s nothing worse than enforced fun. Unfortunately, lots of team building activities have that reputation and it’s not that there is anything wrong with those activities per se, it’s more that they’ve either been presented wrongly or were wrong for that particular team. Too many businesses see team building as a box ticking exercise or something that people just do without any real purpose. This is a sadly missed opportunity because team building should be exactly that, building a team. Done properly, regular effective team building activities can bring colleagues closer together and help them collaborate more efficiently. Here are some mistakes businesses make in their approach to team building that prevents them making the most of it.

  1. Lack of Planning and Doing it for the Sake of it

Last minute poorly planned activities are always a bad move. Your choices are hugely limited when you do this and you end up doing whatever is available without any real aim to it. Having an objective for team building sounds daft as, surely, the objective is in the name. There’s more to it than this though as you may want a particular group to work more closely together or to help certain team members build their confidence or to help colleagues develop their leadership skills. Having this in mind when you plan your activity can really help you achieve those objectives. For example, if you want to build up certain people’s confidence, you have to choose an activity they’ll be fairly good at.

  1. A Great Activity but Totally Wrong for the Team

You can plan the most cool and badass outside away day activity but if your team just aren’t outside people, it’s going to be a bad move. That sounds obvious, but a remarkable number of businesses choose team building activities that either just appeal to the management or are just convenient or cheap. Think about which activities are going to suit the most people. If you have a large diverse team, it’s unlikely you’ll please absolutely everyone but, when you focus on your aims for the activity, you can find something that most closely fits your team and what you want to achieve.

  1. Throwing them into It

Some people feel that team building activities are a waste of their time and wonder why they’re bothering. One of the ways to make this less likely is to prepare your team for what they’re about to do by telling them what to expect and why they’re doing it. There’s nothing worse than a demotivated team engaging in an activity because their boss told them to but they don’t see the sense in. By taking the time to tell everyone what they’re doing and why, they are far more likely to properly engage.

  1. Lacking the Competitive Edge

Nothing quite bonds a team like competing against another team. Having a competitive element to team building activities is almost always a winner but, obviously, activities that have an every man/woman/person for themselves slant aren’t going to be ideal if you’re trying to encourage people to work closely together. When there is no competition involved, however, you risk staff members seeing it as a bit pointless so getting the balance right on competitiveness is important.

  1. Once it’s Done, it’s Done

One thing that contributes to that ‘what’s the point?’ attitude some employees have towards team building is that they do them once and never again. The best team building activity in the world isn’t going to create a perfect team in one session. Teams need multiple activities to bond and keep working well together. One thing that can make this particularly effective is feedback after activities so teams can tell their bosses what they like, what they don’t like and what they’d like to get out of future sessions.

Basically, the big mistakes businesses make in choosing team building activities is they just don’t think it through thoroughly enough. Obviously, as an escape room company who offer lots in the way of team building activities, we’re going to point out how good escape rooms are for this as they are varied enough to suit lots of different teams and individuals. If you would like to talk to us about our team building packages and away days, get in contact on 01273 220388 or email