Team Building Facilitation

Team Building Facilitation

Just what is team building and how do you do it? There are more answers to this question than we can begin to describe. Although many of our clients are looking for team building as one of the outcomes from a strategic planning session or retreat very few of them actually have a separate agenda item for team building. They believe, and we agree with them, that a lot of team building is achieved through the process for of developing a strategy or resolving an issue. Many believe that getting away from the office, and spending social time together over meals, or recreational activities, sets the stage for team building, without an elaborate “intervention”. In some cases, our clients will go a step further and contract with a local supplier for a team building activity at some point during the retreat. If you are interested in this type of activity it is something that you should discuss with the hotels you are considering to see who they can recommend.

When a client does want to have a dedicated agenda item for team building there are several approaches that we can recommend.

Appreciative Inquiry

This approach is built on the belief that it is better for people to develop their own model from their own experiences “teach them” someone else’s model. Most of us will have had experiences where we felt that a team was really working well together. During this agenda item, we have people work in breakout groups and share these experiences with one another. It is tremendously empowering and uplifting to hear these experiences and to discuss what it was that people did that made that team so successful. As we hear more and more stories we can start to build a model as to what it takes for a team to be successful, based on our own past successes. This leads smoothly to a discussion as to how we can do more of this in our current situation.

Team Building with Strengths Finder

In this blog entry, we describe how we use StrengthsFinder 2.0 to help as a team building activity. We have used it with many more clients since the blog post was written but the approach remains the same.

Team Building with DiSC

DiSC stands for Dominance, Influence, Steadiness, and Conscientiousness. It is a tool that surfaces insights into how people with different styles behave in different situations. Compared to other tools like Myers-Briggs or True Colors, it does a good job of being neither too complex to be applied nor too simplistic to be accepted by executives. In this blog post, we describe how we use DiSC as a team building activity.

If you would like to discuss team building as part of a leadership retreat please contact Meeting Facilitators International. The initial consultation is always free.

From Our Clients

“Over the past five or six years we have worked with Bruce more than a dozen times as a focus group moderator for our pharmaceutical and medical device clients. The clients are always impressed with how quickly Bruce picks up challenging concepts and how easily he communicates them. The high-quality feedback and insight he draws from the focus group participants is what we are all looking for. Bruce’s track record in exceeding client objectives makes me extremely comfortable recommending him to any of our clients regardless of therapeutic area.”

David Small

Vice President Events, Frontline Medical Communications, Inc.

“We wanted to find somebody unbiased, with no agenda, who could lead the retreat and pull in all points of view. Bruce did this and more. He brought some clever ways to make sure that we fully explored our ideas and he forced the discipline of setting priorities and of committing to an action plan. We have now used him three years in a row since everyone sees the value he adds and trusts his process.”

Mary Todd Peterson

CEO, Medmarc Insurance Group

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