How do you build a strong team when some of the members of that team are simply uninterested in team building? That’s sort of the catch-22 of the entire teambuilding endeavor. On the one hand, there are plenty of ways you can strengthen and unify your professional team. The problem is, those methods are only effective if people are willing to engage with them in the first place, and some employees just aren’t.
You may have some teambuilding skeptics on your own team—so how do you win them over and get them to participate in team activities? A few tips spring to mind:
- Always make sure there is a method to your madness, and that the method is clearly articulated to your team members. If it seems like your teambuilding exercises are just silly games or wastes of time, then you’re going to find yourself with plenty of skeptics. But if you explain the point, and how it will affect the company’s bottom line and its productivity, some of those skeptics may be more willing to give it a chance.
- Be mindful of different personalities and talents. The people on your team all bring different things to the table; some may be introverted or more timid by nature, and thus less likely to enjoy group activities. While you should certainly encourage involvement with group activities, you shouldn’t try to change people or cast judgment on who they are personally.
- Try speaking to skeptics privately and one-on-one. Let them express their misgivings to you, and explain to them why you think teambuilding is important. Ask them for their support and encourage them to be positive about teambuilding, even if they don’t personally understand the value in it quite yet.
- Publicize the success of your teambuilding activities. Has productivity increased since your last teambuilding activity, in a way that’s measurable? Then let your team know. Make it clear that the team is making progress and that the teambuilding exercises are bearing fruit.
- Enlist the help of enthusiastic team members to pull others into the fold; let them know you appreciate their appreciation and rely on their support.
To learn more about engaging skeptics in teambuilding, contact Dr. Rick Goodman—the team-building expert! Dr. Rick Goodman is a professional speaker and author who works with organizations that want to develop great leaders “Through Excellence in Communication and Team Building.” For more information on Rick’s speaking programs, audio programs, and learning programs, contact (888) 267-6098 or Rick@rickgoodman.com, or visit www.rickgoodman.com.