Top 10 tips to avoid ‘Apprentice’ team building day

On the face of it anyone watching the mess that the BBC’s The
Apprentice
teams made of organising a team-building day could be
forgiven for buying into the prejudices around team-building that were
re-enforced.
 
The reality however for the observant viewer was
quite the reverse. The task was introduced by the show’s host Alan Sugar
as “an away day for corporate clients – not a jolly, you understand,
but an exercise in team-building, and communication and listening
skills”.
 
I can only assume that the apprentice candidates had
already switched off at this point because the solutions they provided
came straight from the David Brent School of management development.
 
The
briefing meetings with their blue chip clients so clearly re-enforced
Lord Sugar’s message about outcomes that when it became clear the two
teams, Evolve and Endeavour had totally missed the point I began to
wonder how much of the programme I could endure.
 
It certainly
made good TV but most of all, once I had managed to get over my
discomfort, it shows just how dysfunctional teams can become without
good communication and listening skills.
 
Filling a day with
activities without understanding how to turn that experience into
learning is, without doubt, a complete waste of time and money.  No
shock then when both clients on the show asked for significant cash back
for a complete failure to satisfy the clearly expressed desired
outcomes.


 
In
spite of the show I hope, dear reader, you will still want to explore
the opportunity to develop your team through experiential team-building
so let me provide some thoughts to help you get the most out your
investment.

  1. Decide how you need your team to improve, what do those improvements look like?
  2. Chose a teambuilding provider with a proven track record
  3. Talk
    to a senior representative of the provider.  If they haven’t listened
    to you and cannot give you total confidence in their understanding of
    your agenda – move on to another
  4. Ask to speak to at least one other client of theirs who is willing to recommend them
  5. Make sure the event includes the services of an experienced facilitator
  6. Meet the facilitator to ensure the chemistry will be right for your team
  7. Only
    use a provider that can demonstrate results, ideally they should assess
    and record your team’s performance before, on the day and at agreed
    intervals after the event
  8. Ensure that ALL of the team attend the event
  9. Create
    expectations for them in advance; full participation is key – even for
    the cynics.  A good facilitator will help you achieve this
  10. If it’s worth doing don’t skimp, your team will feel valued if it’s clear you have invested in them.

Any comments? Email conferencenews@mashmedia.net

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Conference News hosts great guests on its pages. Our Blog section is the collection of the best opinions in the UK and international events industry.

ConferenceNews Guest Author

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ConferenceNews Guest Author

Conference News hosts great guests on its pages. Our Blog section is the collection of the best opinions in the UK and international events industry.

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