Recommended as: reward, integrating activity, personal development;
Recommended for: everybody (min. 10, max. 35 people); it may well be a relaxed evening for a group of co-workers after finalizing an important project, great opportunity to get to know the new hires, or to reinvigorate a bit rusty team through the casino adrenaline rush;
Benefits: integration with a glass of wine in one hand and casino chips in the other, people open up and communicate, establishing personal relations, people share an experience of learning about wine which they can later discuss and re-live.
3) POLISH COOKING CLASS
Nothing brings people together better than food. Give your team opportunity to learn together from some of the best chefs in Warsaw and then consume the fruits of their labor in an enthusiastic feast.
Recommended as: conflict resolution, integrating activity, reward, personal development;
Recommended for: absolutely everybody;
Type: adventure, event, personal development;
Benefits: there is hardly a better environment to settle conflicts than kitchen for cooking requires cooperation, harmony, and heart to produce great taste, people talk while cooking, taste their dishes and adjust their actions to achieve the expected flavors; eating together and sharing impressions from the kitchen is a great opportunity to improve internal communication of any team; creativity scouting; leadership scouting; innovation scouting.
4) BUBBLE FOOTBALL
Football like you’ve never seen before! The game consists in wearing giant inflatable balls and banging into your rival sending them flying above the pitch. Communication and cooperation are the key to win the game!
Recommended for: absolutely everybody (who can physically survive this);
Type: adventure, event;
Benefits: while there may be less physically demanding options, they are not even half as fun as this one; highly energizing and invigorating; perfect to let go of everyday stress; building team spirit; integration through sports; leadership scouting; team-player scouting.
5) WARSAW COCKTAIL WORKSHOP
Who wouldn’t like to dazzle colleagues with a groundbreaking self-made cocktail? Give your staff a chance to learn the art of mixology and let the liquor flow.
Recommended as: integrating activity, reward, personal development;
Recommended for: those who wouldn’t object to having a whole event centered around alcohol;
Benefits: bar is the ultimate place to get to know the new hires or to integrate staff lacking informal relations; this is both a learning experience shared within a group and an occasion to spend some time chit-chatting with cocktail in your hand; your company may also merit from inviting people who weren’t hitting it off too well lately to prepare cocktails for each other ; creativity scouting; learning abilities scouting.
6) WARSAW BIKE TOUR
The Polish capital prides itself on swiftly developing a system of cycling routes. On this tour you will discover some of the most beautiful spots in Warsaw in an eco-friendly, active way.
Recommended for: sports enthusiasts, basic physical fitness required, great way of learning the topography of Warsaw for non-locals max. 15 people;
Type: event, adventure;
Benefits: you will have an opportunity to take pictures of your team in the most Instagrammable of Warsaw, later they can hang on the office wall reminding of the great time you spent together; cycling together is an experience that most people will remember fondly for long; a great chance to get to know Warsaw better before hitting the city together in the evening; new hires who come from outside of Warsaw have a chance to learn the city in the company of colleagues who already know the city.
7) CRAFT BEER WALKING TOUR IN WARSAW
Take a walk together and drink some of the finest local craft beers. It’s a perfect opportunity to have fun with the team while learning a thing or two about a booming Polish craft beer industry.
Recommended for: teams with new hires on board; great way to learn the basics of Warsaw center’s topography; celebrating successful projects;
Type: event, adventure;
Benefits: great way to reward your team after a demanding project; an opportunity to develop informal relations; a chance to take some fun pics to hang on the office wall; you will drink enough to get easy and comfortable, but not as much as to get drunk, so it is a safe evening option for everyone.
Team Building 101: WHY?
Conflict resolution, integration of new hires, and boosting cooperation and performance are great reasons to organize a team building event.
Team Building: What’s in it for me?
Is it economically sound to spend a portion of the budget on activities that in essence are fun and impact only the atmosphere in the office? What if some people think it is lame to attend company events and do anything to find an excuse not to show up?
DOUBLE C: COMMUNICATION AND COOPERATION
Even though for many years it was largely overlooked by managers and HR departments, there is solid evidence that team building benefits every company. First and foremost, spending time together outside of a strictly professional context facilitates communication and cooperation. Once employees get to know each other better they are inspired to exchange information and ideas on a regular basis. Better connected employees are able to coordinate actions across different departments or projects more effectively. Not to mention that it is much easier to share new ideas with people who support us.
Furthermore, a team built on trust between members who know each other, so that they can predict outcomes of each other’s actions, will be able to adapt more quickly to dynamic situations on the market.
Therefore, if you want your team to make use of their creativity to bolster innovation in your company, there is no better way of sponsoring it than wrapping your head around team building.
Apart from that, team building activities give you a unique chance to observe your employees in a new environment. This is your learning moment as a manager. Be curious and observe whether they show some talents of which you haven’t suspected them. Informal context allows the team to escape their office roles and take on new responsibilities. You will be surprised how many hitherto unknown skills each team member will have showcased during your event. Identifying talents and later consciously employing them in work projects will make for a success-bound team happy to fulfill their duties.
Last, but definitely not least, engagement-in-the-workplace rates skyrocket after team building activities and it is easy to see why. Once you work with people you had fun with, whom you know on the first name basis, and who form a stable respectful group, your stress connected to work is significantly reduced. Best case scenario, you even start feeling and internalizing the famed team spirit. From there on you see that the atmosphere in the workplace directly impacts the balance sheets in the financial department. Employees who are happy to come to work (1) achieve better results, (2) attract new customers and (3) find it easy to maintain the old ones, and (4) have no issues with sometimes staying longer hours if need be.
All of the above highlight WHAT FOR you should definitely get right down to finding an optimal team building activity. But what exactly are these?
So what really is team building?
Generally, team building activities are all actions organized by the employer that serve two purposes:
Let’s feel different than we do every day in the office.
Let’s do and learn something new together.
There are 5 categories of such initiatives:
adventure, for example: paintball, exotic trip, adventure park;
event, for example: picnic, dinner in a restaurant, concert
charity, for example: collecting food for a dog asylum, visiting people in a hospice, cleaning a neighboring park from litter;
organic actions, for example: best carrot cake competition, bring your dog to work day, ask a different person about their favorite ice-cream flavor every day and complete a list;
training, for example: cooking workshop, professional skills workshop, authority’s lecture.
Whichever you choose, you can succeed or bust. It all depends on the choices you’ve made in the selection phase. Your investment will bring the expected results, if you follow the 3 P’s rule. It will help you identify your goals and choose the activity accordingly.
The 3 P’s rule:
PURPOSE – it is the WHY and WHAT-FOR that determine the WHAT. You need to establish the primary goal of the activity you want to organize. Choose one of the 4 WHYs and opt for an offer that serves it best. You will probably find out that just any team building effort addresses each of the WHYs to a larger or lesser degree. Therefore before you contact any organizers, go through our list of WHAT-FORs so that you can tell them what in particular you expect to achieve through the activity. Setting priorities will allow you to target developmental areas of your team and ensure that the invested time and money are well-spent.
PEOPLE – you need to know who you invite to the activity. Age, gender, fitness, interests, nationality, position within the company of the participants are all factors that you must take into account when choosing an activity. Are there people with disabilities? Is this (for example drinking alcohol) appropriate for all represented cultures? Do you need to have an option for vegans? These are just some of the questions you need to ask yourself. After all you don’t want to offend anyone or make somebody feel less welcomed. If you think that you don’t have enough intel about the team,… just ask them. People will be happy to tell you about their preferences. It is enough to be receptive to feedback in order to choose an activity that will be suited to your team’s needs and wants.
PRICE – you don’t need to drain the company savings to have a great team building experience. In fact, there are many options that are absolutely costless. Maybe all you need is an all-department contest for the best apple pie. Or a donation box placed in a central part of the open-space. If you want more, keep in mind that team building is not about spending a fortune on a luxury Caribbean cruise for the whole department, but it aims at making people more comfortable and effective as a respected and recognized member of a team. So invest wisely, not exorbitantly. There are many available options which will let your team’s spirit bloom while being easy on your budget.
In essence, this is all you need to know about team building. The theoretical part is over. Now go back to our TOP 7 list and make an informed decision on how to help your staff achieve their best. Find out more tours and experiences here.
On OddUrbanThings, we provide up-to-date info about the coolest events and the best stuff to do in Warsaw.