Team building activities are important to a growing company because it is important for upper management to see how their employees function as a group in activities that do not involve their daily work activities. Team building activities also help company executives see which employees have the qualities of a true leader that could help the company grow and succeed in the future. In nearly any team building exercise there will emerge a leader in a group, and the point of these activities is to help that leader use their skills.
There are a couple of team building exercises that can bring out the leader in anyone that has those qualities and one of the more effective team building exercises is one called Zoom. In Zoom each member of a group is given a photograph that they cannot show the other members of the group. All the photographs are related in some way, and the group needs to come up with a composite image based on the individual pictures. Since they cannot show each other their pictures, each person must describe their image and the group needs to process that information and use it to create one composite image. Zoom is an excellent team building and leadership activity because it requires patience, communication, and someone to step forward and coordinate all of the activity that is going on. It can be a frustrating exercise, but if the right kind of leader emerges then Zoom can be come a very effective way to show that person's leadership skills to the group and to the company.
Who Should Survive?
One of the more interesting team building exercises is the many different kinds of survival exercises that can be developed. Each person is assigned a role such as a doctor or preacher, and then a survival scenario is given and the group must decide who lives and who is left out. For example, one popular survival scenario is that your group is on a sinking ship and the last lifeboat only holds eight people and there are twelve of you. The sinking ship scenario is effective because it puts a time limit on the game, and it also puts the group under duress right away. In a survival exercise you find out not only which of your employees understands the idea of being a team player, but you may also see leaders emerge that can lead under even the most difficult of circumstances. A survival game can get competitive, and a true leader can find ways to make the game work and come to solutions that everyone can understand.
What to Look For
A leader is someone that is able to evaluate the skills of the people around them, and then motivate those people to use their skills to the mutual benefit of the group. A leader knows how to listen to the people around them, and they display an aura of confidence that motivates people to act to the best of their abilities. Leaders can be difficult to find, but when you see a leader emerge through a team building activity then you need to nurture those leadership qualities and put them to work for the future of your company.