The short answer to the question is yes, and no. As with many things in life, it’s not straightforward.
The fact that you’re forced into doing a team activity won’t change the facts that you are involved in a team-building activity. If the activity is well organized then you’ll need to participate and should benefit as an individual and as a member of the team.
But, that doesn’t mean you won’t feel resentment, even if you enjoyed yourself.
The real point of team building is to improve the relationship and morale between members of your team. If any team member is forced to undertake team-building activities they are likely to start, and probably finish, the activity in a negative frame of mind.
This is likely to cause resentment towards those that performed the activity well and cause tensions within the workplace. You may also find that those who don’t want to complete tea building activities actually ruin the day for everyone else involved.
It can be hard work building a team spirit if one person refuses to get involved or do more than the bare minimum.
Is There A Right Way To Team Build For Everyone?
It is possible to hold great corporate team building events. However, before you plan any you should consider how well the team already functions. If they are already bonding then you’ll need to question the merit of adding team building into their schedule, if it’s not needed they may resent the tie away from their current projects!
If you’re not sure then simply circulate a short questionnaire regarding their attitude towards team building, their perception of the current team, and what type of team building activities would actually inspire them. You can make the questionnaire anonymous to encourage honest answers.
This will allow you to compile the results and devise the best way forward.
Of course, a boss can force staff to go to a team-building event if it’s on standard work time and they’re still being paid. But, that doesn’t mean you should force it. While everyone needs to be pushed outside their comfort zone occasionally, it won’t be beneficially if the team is resisting.
That’s why you need to consider the type of team you have and the activities they would enjoy most, tea building doesn’t have to be building a white-water raft or a bridge, you can create intellectual challenges which are more stimulating and will encourage the team to use each other’s strengths, and weaknesses, to get the challenge completed.
If your team isn’t working as well together as it should, or could, be, then you need to listen to them regarding what activities they would find fun. It will help you to choose an activity that appeals to all and gets them wanting to join in.
If you can do that your halfway to creating the team atmosphere that boosts productivity, morale, and staff retention.