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Planning a Team Building Event: Top Tips for Success

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These days many companies have a pot of money set aside for staff activities. But we all know how this money is sometimes spent. One of the sales guys organises a ‘team building activity’ - go-karting followed by drinks. Paintball followed by drinks. Indoor golf followed by drinks.

The trouble with these ‘off-the-shelf’ team building events is that they’re often poorly planned and are based completely around the activity, rather than the activity being planned to meet organisational goals.

They often exclude people for physical or health reasons, as well as motivational or even religious ones. And if it doesn’t include the whole team then how can it be a team building activity?

Conversely, a bespoke team building activity is constructed around your team's specific needs and requirements.

It should take into account, amongst other things, the capabilities of your team both mental and physical, your preferred location and facilities, and your desired outcomes from the event.

Why do I need a bespoke team building event?

Team-building events are excellent for employee engagement.

And creating your own team-building event is far more effective than buying a typical ‘off-the-shelf’ team-building experience. Not everyone wants or is able to go paintballing or indoor rock climbing. In addition, the locations of these activities can be limited, often out-of-town or on an industrial estate, with very little to do afterward in the local vicinity (apart from drinks…)

A bespoke event can be tailored to your team's needs, abilities and capabilities. This helps to ensure that no one is excluded (or included under duress) and that every team member is empowered and encouraged to take part.

Most importantly, you want your team to return to the business energised and focused. Investing in people is essential in a modern business and you should aim to enhance your team's happiness, culture and engagement.

Engaged and motivated staff consistently produce better results.

Compare team building events 

How do I plan a team building event?

Planning a team building activity on your own can be a daunting prospect. There are a lot of things to organise and it can be a little overwhelming to keep all the plates spinning.

Ensuring you pitch the activities at the appropriate level, that the team building exercise delivers on its intentions, and that the participants have fun, are all crucial to the success or failure of an event.

Then there’s the logistical side - booking the venue and catering, deciding on an events provider, organising travel and accommodation if necessary.

So we’ve put together a little checklist to have in place before you start organising your next bespoke team event.

Organising a team building event - checklist

  • Goals - What are your team building goals?

  • Participants - Who will be attending the team building event?

  • Activities - What team building activities will work for my team?

  • Location - Where will the team building event take place?

  • Logistics - Finalising the bookings, making the arrangements

What are your team building goals?

When you’re planning your team building event it’s important to have a clear goal in mind.

  • What are you looking to achieve with the event?

  • Is this simply a way for your staff to let off steam, get out of the office and socialise together?

  • Are you looking for your team to learn how their different skill sets can boost them to achieve more together than they can apart?

  • Would you like them to develop their interpersonal relationships, create deeper bonds, or understand each other better?

  • Do you want to improve their communication? Time management? Problem-solving?

Whatever the aim of your team building event, defining a clear goal before you start is a brilliant way of providing clarity to the rest of your event-planning choices.

Who will be attending the event?

When planning the event, you need to take into account the mental and physical attributes of your team.

This starts with accessibility for any less able members of your team, but also touches on the logistics of how everyone will travel to the event location and the facilities that will need to be available.

But it’s also central to the type of activities you will plan.

Consider your team. What are their limits? Can you see everyone doing rock climbing? Or painting ceramics for two hours?

Having a clear idea of who will be attending and what this means for the activities provided, the location selected and all the other considerations is essential before moving on to the next stage.

What team building activities will work for my team?

So you know what your goals are, and you know who’s going to be there.

But what activities will achieve your goals for this group of multi-generational people who make up your team?

Firstly it's essential to identify activities whose attributes best match your intended goals.

On each of our team building activities, we list the key objectives that each activity satisfies. This helps you select the activities that intersect with your goals.

Alternatively, you can give us your goals and our experts will curate an activity menu for you, that we feel will best fulfill them - our quote system has an option for this.

If you have a wide range of participant capabilities, it’s sensible to include a variety of activities to suit all levels of physical and mental ability. You could even choose activities with a variety of roles so each team member can play to their strengths.

This allows each of your team to participate and shine in their own way. After all, an effective team utilises the skills of each of its members to the full.

Where will the team building event take place?

You might be lucky enough to have space or facilities to hold a team building event at your premises. If you do then we can certainly help you out by bringing the team building event to your location.

However, you might not have the necessary space, or facilities to make it work effectively.

In addition, we find that taking your team away from the day-to-day workspace, and into a new environment encourages greater engagement. A nice location can certainly make your team feel appreciated.

You also need to consider if the team building activities are intended to be part of a larger event.

Maybe it's the annual conference or half-year results. You might need a room for speeches and presentations. You could need a full sit-down dinner and overnight accommodation.

And every location you find wants you to fill out its enquiry form before you even get an indication of whether it's inside your budget.

This is where those spinning plates crop up again.

Luckily the Events Made Simple quote system can quickly deliver a range of options that will fit all your requirements - including a price, without you needing to fill out endless enquiry forms.

Why not try it and get a quote now?

Finalising the bookings, making the arrangements

So, you have clear goals, you know who’s attending, you know where it’s going to happen and you know what activities you’re going to be doing.

All you have to do now is book the hotel, book the activity company, arrange transport, arrange catering, and on and on…

Or you could let us do it for you.

If you go through our quote system, you’ll be able to easily pick your options and be given a price immediately.

Once you select your preference from our range of fabulous locations, you can book it all there and then. We’ll arrange everything for you (apart from transport).

So you just need to get everyone there on the right day, ready to have some fun. It really couldn’t be more simple.

Event feedback and evaluation

Finally, following your successful event it's always worth asking for feedback (we certainly do!)

What did your team enjoy? What worked well? What didn’t work so well?

By evaluating the event afterward you’ll gain valuable information and guidance on how to make the next one even more successful.

To make your next team-building activity a success, get a quote or contact us. We’d be thrilled to help you plan your next event.

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