Team Building Blog

Team Building Blog

Team Builders Plus Blog

This section of the website is our way of sharing some of our expertise and knowledge in regards to what we have learned by being a proven Team Building  industry leader.


Why a Team Building Exercise is Perfect for Your Next Conference
It’s that time of year: across the nation, businesses like yours are gearing up for their annual conferences. Is your company looking forward to networking, inspiring keynote speeches, and re-energizing for another year of teamwork and innovation?

Holiday Season Team Building: The Power of SmileKits
the power of smilekits blog
There’s a lot going on in our world right now and much of it reminds us just how much other people in our community need support during difficult times, especially during the holidays.  We want to pitch in and make a difference and often feel like we are just one person.

Building Your Team and Changing You Community
Building Your Team and Changing Your Community
We’ve had a great summer here at Team Builders Plus. We’ve been busy with scavenger hunts and adventures, and loved seeing teams bond while scouring their city for clues and participating in fun physical challenges.

Restore Balance and Grow Your Team with Harmonia from Team Builders Plus
harmonia team building program
As your organization grows, it’s inevitable that you’ll encounter potential scenarios of discord or dysfunction. Departmental silos develop, individual intentions overshadow organizational goals and the zeal of upper management stresses staff.

Can Your Team Save the World? Find Out with a Zombie Scavenger Hunt
zombie treasure hunt blog
Just in time for Halloween, we’re proud to introduce a brand-new team building activity that’s as spooky as it is exciting and fun for the whole team. The Zombie Treasure Hunt joins our family of versatile, action-packed scavenger hunt activities this fall.

There's a Team Building Activity For You - Trust Us
there is a team building activity for you
Whether your organization is large or small, city-based or out in the country, attending a conference or settled on home base, Team Builders Plus keeps your team’s needs and goals in mind. We’ve designed dozens of team building programs for just about any group that wants to have fun, learn and strengthen their communication and commitment.

Celebrating Another Success for Team Builders Plus and What it Means for You
2015 best places to work philadelphia business journal
When we founded Team Builders in 1991, our mission was to transform the shape of every company culture we touched. Over the past 24 years, we’ve helped hundreds of organizations break down communication barriers, boost their productivity and sustain dynamic workplaces where team members eagerly pitch in for their fellow co-workers.

Are Silos Putting a Damper On Your Company?
Are Silos Putting a Damper On Your Company?
Are there individuals or departments within you company that refuse to interact or acknowledge one another? If so, then you have silos in your organization and you are not alone.     

what is the difference team building or team outing
What is the difference between a team building event and a team outing? If you were to type this question into Google, it would be difficult to find an answer. Many people don’t think there is a difference, so how would Google, Bing or any other search engine?     

Time for Coaching 
Time for coaching Blog
When I ask people if they provide as much coaching to their staff members as they should, they almost always say, “No.”Then, when I ask them why they don’t coach their people as much as they should, they inevitably reply, “I don’t have the time.”  

Can't we all just get along? blog
While many organizations take the time to clearly define their values, very few identify consequences for not exhibiting those values.  If organizations want to retain their best people, they need to consciously and deliberately create the desired culture.  

Experience: The Link Between Knowing and Doing
Experience is the link between knowing and Doing
As corporations seek to improve workforce productivity, managers are realizing the need to shift organizational cultures from “me” to we.” However, teamwork cannot be mandated – it needs to be developed.

Blog a matter of trust billy joel
Billy Joel once wrote, “It’s always been a matter of trust.” In organizations, people often talk about trust. It’s high. It’s low. It’s non-existent. So if people talk about trust, it must be easy to define. Right?


So you just got a new boss blog
Your manager just left and you now face the prospect of building a positive relationship with your new boss.  You experience a range of emotions from happy, nervous, sad, anxious, and hopeful.

blog dealing with cultural misfits
They’re productive. They meet their goals. They’ve been around for a long time. And, although they don’t model your organizational values, you keep them around. They’re the cultural misfits and most organizations have them..

Been there done that blog
We know that happy people are more likely to stay in organizations than unhappy people.  Therefore, companies are increasingly looking for new ways to build teamwork, increase engagement, and boost morale.  

Brain-Friendly Training

Brain FriendlyTraining Blog
Our brains are creatures of habit.  The wiring that carries information seeks to sustain consistent patterns and guides us to make similar decisions to those made in the past.  In fact, most of our decisions aren’t decisions at all, but rather instinctive reactions to external stimuli.

Its not who you know that matters
In the world of business, as in life itself, relationships play a key role in one’s success and happiness.  Yet, we often neglect the key relationships that will create long-term satisfaction.

one teams intergalactic adventure blog
There are twelve missions to choose from that are divided into five categories, including: Reconnaissance, Sabotage, and Tactical Support. Perhaps a team will choose to Destroy Grid mines, Rescue Captives, or Map the Planet.

Teamwork Lessons Learned from Doctors and Nurses


Healthcare organizations now see the positive benefits of a team culture versus a having a group of individual contributors.


An Exercise in Postive Thinking

An exercise in positive thinking
It’s amazing how our brains tend to skip over negative words.  If you tell a small child, “Don’t touch the cookies,” the only thing the child can think about is touching the cookies.  


Delegation: Development not Dumping
Delegation Development not Dumping Blog
Delegation is not about taking something off of the metaphorical plate containing all of the work that needs to be done by you or staff members. Delegation is about development…nothing more, nothing less.

Just Breathe
Just Breathe
We all have it at one point or another. Some of us experience stressful environments in the workplace and some of us experience heightened states of tension for prolonged periods of time where there seems like there is no escape.  

Team Samurai: The Art of Teamwork
Team Samurai the art of teamwork
Team Samurai is the brainchild of Team Builders Plus co-founder, president, and chief learning officer, Merrick Rosenberg.  Along with more than two decades of experience in the world of team building, Merrick has been practicing and teaching karate since 1987.  

Cultivating High Performance Teams
cultivating high performance teams
When I speak with people about their work life, one theme is constant: Their co-workers, not the work itself, create more frustration than anything else.  Studies repeatedly show that people do not quit their companies, they quit their manager.  

From You to We
From you to we

Have you ever noticed that when someone initially joins your company, department, or team, for a while, they talk about the group as, “you” as opposed to “we.” They ask questions such as, “How do you do this?” or “Where do you keep this information on the computer system?”


I have a secret. Are you Listening?
effective speaking blog
We all know what it takes to be a good listener.  In fact, I start my training listening skills training programs by having participants share the characteristics of effective listeners.  

Predictable Communication Breakdowns
blog predictable communication breakdowns
Effective communication is one of the keys to individual and organizational success. However, when asked, “Can you predict a future communication breakdown?” most answer with a resounding, “Yes!”

Donuts Don't Build Morale
donuts do not drive moral blog
We all talk about workplace morale. Is it high? Is it low? Is it improving? Is it breaking down? But what is morale? The Gallup Organization defines morale as, “The emotional attachment or sense of engagement a sales person has for his or her job.”

Innovation Drives Success
innovation drives success blog
Successful organizations that know that innovation drives success and the people effectively create new ideas, strategies, and products and efficiently turn them into reality. 

Office Bingo
Office Bingo team building activity
Looking to add some fun in the office with a price tag of $0?  Read on!  Here’s a game we played at Team Builders Plus with our own staff that kept us laughing and sharing stories with each other.

Stop Ignoring Your Star Team Players

We have all seen this play out, a manager is faced with a key employee contemplating leaving the company to take a similar position with a new organization for the same or less pay. 

When Brainstorming Ends Too Early
team building blog when brainstorming ends too early
In our attempts to work quickly and efficiently, we tend to limit ourselves by not taking the time to let the creativity grow.

5 Things Your Employer Wished Their Managers Knew
blog 5 things employers wished their boss knew
Lack of praise and recognition is one of the leading causes of employee turn-over. It doesn’t cost anything if you to tell me how much my contribution means to our organization every once in a while.


“Don’t We Work for the Same Company?” - Functional Silos & What to Do About Them
Blog Functional Silos team development
When goals are not aligned between departments, the company can actually be working against itself, making decisions as if other departments are external competitors.  Silos create a duplication of work, delays, and red tape that are ultimately experienced by the customer. 

Teamwork Lessons Learned from the NFL
teamwork lessons learned from the nfl
With the NFL season upon us, players and coaches are focusing on the ultimate goal, a Super Bowl championship. Championship caliber teams do have great players, but it is not just great players that make a great team.

Creating Team Rituals (Part II of Defining Your Teams Culture)
creating team rituals
Once the desired “behaviors” are created and defined, it is time to communicate the behaviors and create a plan to make it part of the everyday life of all team members.

Defining Your Teams Culture (Part I)
Defining your teams culture
Having a great team culture is the foundation of any high performance team. This goes beyond just having smart and talented team members, nor is it about what the team produces. Team Culture is about how the team works together as a cohesive unit.   

A Meeting Planner's Best Friend
meeting planners best friend
The job of a meeting planner is complex and requires the ability to pay attention to the finest of details.  Whether they are planning a one-day sales meeting for 25 individuals or a 4-day conference for 2,500 people, they have to make sure every aspect of the event is taken care with perfection. 
 

Thanks Really
Blog Thanks Really Thumnail

When was the last time you genuinely thanked someone on your team?  I mean sincere appreciation, not, “Can you pass the stapler?  Thanks.” So many of our co-workers do an outstanding job, day in and day out, that it becomes a matter of  routine, something that is taken for granted.  

What is Team Building?
what is team building

“So, what do you do?”  I both love and hate this question.  I love this question because I love my job and I love what I do, but I hate this question because my answer, “I work for a team building company,” is inevitably followed by either, “Team building?  What’s that?” or “So you climb trees and have people fall back into each other’s arms?”   

 
It Must Be Perfect Where You Work
It must be perfect where you work

Those of us who work in the team building world help people improve their work environment.  Most people call us when they realize they’re starting to have a problem or when their problems get out of hand.  We then conduct a team building training program or process to help get them back on track  

There's Got To Be A Better Way!
there has got to be a better way blog

Sometimes our bias for action overwhelms our need to plan. In a business culture that praises results, particularly quick results, it shouldn't be a surprise that planning often comes secondarily, almost as an afterthought.


Start Talking and Get Back to Work
start talking blog

People need to stop typing and start talking. The telephone is better than email, but face-to-face communication is best. How else are we going to get the information that we need to do our jobs?

I learned a bit about Team Building Last Night at Little League
team building baseball comparison blog
Our seven-year old kids are jersey color-blind but as adults we often silo ourselves into “teams”. Sales vs. marketing. Finance vs administrators. Northeast vs. Southeast. Did we all start out as color-blind seven-year olds in a see of multi-color baseball jerseys? When did it all change and how do we get back to being one team?


How to Assemble a Child’s Swing Set, by DISC Style 
how to assemble a swing set by disc style

Imagine you buy a swing set for your children, and the sales rep at the store tells you the estimated assembly time is 4 hours, detailed instructions included.  What does this assembly actually look like?

How can I resolve a conflict? 
How can I resolve conflict

When you’re in a conflict or confrontation it can be hard to think straight, and that can make it hard to resolve the situation appropriately.  Here’s a quick easy acronym to help: LEAF.  LEAF stands for: Listen, Empathize, Action plan, Follow through.

The benefits of team huddles is clear, however there are additional side benefits.  By holding huddles on a regular basis, it will create a sense of unity and create a positive culture with open communication.

As you read through your feeds and blogs, make a note of the DISC styles used by bloggers in a given platform. You may find some interesting commonalities. The chatty Parrot, the decisive Eagle, the conscientious Owl, or the peace-loving Dove.

When is team building more than just team building?  When you give back to the community while improving group dynamics.

Some organizations want to make a positive impact on their home community while helping to improve team dynamics in the office.  Can this be done at the same time without ever leaving the comfort of home base?  You bet!

Sometimes communicating with your manager can be just as challenging as level 86 of the Candy Crush Saga game.  Just when you start to think you are making headway, you suddenly realize that you don’t have what you need to be successful and you could really use a lifeline.

I recently read an article that posed the question “is team building a waste of time?” In the article, one of the problems stated was that the exercises did not translate into their current project and issues. This is a key component when identifying the right team building program for your group.

Baseball teams (little league through professionals) from across the country have worked hard to train for the upcoming season. They did not just work on throwing, fielding and batting. They were also building relationships with teammates and coaches since the bonding that goes on during training will last through the whole season.

Believe it or not, the holidays are already just around the corner and my favorite holiday is first on the list - Halloween! Halloween is the perfect opportunity to gather your team and take part in a fantastic team building activity called Movie Mayhem!

We’ve been learning about team building ever since we were four years old watching Saturday morning cartoons in our pajamas. Think about Tom and Jerry for a moment. Poor Jerry Mouse spends most of an episode being chased, stepped on or whacked by a fly swatter by Tom Cat until he finds an ally or two.

Be sure to check out the great article where co-owners of Teambuilding, Inc. Merrick Rosenberg & Jeff Backal are featured regarding teams and team building. The article is in the April 2011 issue of South Jersey Biz.

New York City is a fascinating place to visit. Besides taking in a Broadway show or eating a ginormous deli sandwich, popular tourist sites to see are the Statue of Liberty, Rockefeller Center, Central Park, Grand Central Station and the American Museum of Natural History.

Have you ever heard the expression, "I hate team building"? Throughout my 20 year career in the team building world, I have heard this expression numerous times (of course, this is before they work with my organization).

Have you ever been in a relationship where it is impossible to please everyone all the time? Well here is my situation with my work team. Although I love my teammates dearly, we were having a constant battle over the office temperature.

It’s up to us to teach our children but sometimes, when we least expect it, our children teach us. My son brought home a letter from his school today about teaching thankfulness. It made me think about my own work environment and how often we say thank you.

A Funergizer’s client participated in one of our DIY activities for a holiday party. They were looking for a training company to deliver a team building program for them. Having a lower budget they were unable to hire a training company, but still wanted to offer a fun event for their employees.

A hippie, a renegade and team of misfits just won the World Series. I am by far not the biggest baseball fan but hearing a reporter on the radio refer to the San Francisco Giants this way caught my attention. The reporter could not figure out how this team just won the most coveted title in baseball.

I am quite certain that coworkers rarely utter the following words: "I don't like that person, she listens too much."

Faster. Leaner. Every day, teams are challenged to do more with less…and I need it yesterday! Studies are showing that workplace stress has reached new heights and it’s fairly obvious to recognize that higher stress levels increase the possibility of mistakes at work overall employee burnout.

The summer is a great time to get out of the office and enjoy a team building activity…as long as the weather cooperates that is. It seems that this year, Mother Nature has decided to keep us all on our toes.

Have you ever been to a meeting that has spiraled out of control? You had an agenda. You defined a meeting leader and a scribe to take the minutes. You even had donuts (always a powerful draw to get people there). And yet, the meeting did not accomplish its intended objective.

Corporate teams are jumping at the chance to explore next-generation treasure hunts rather than old-fashioned scavenger hunts.

When I speak at conferences about retaining winning talent and the problem of turnover, I often ask attendees to raise their hands if their fathers worked at three or fewer companies throughout their careers. As you would expect, just about everyone raises their hands.

Members of successful teams know one thing...if everyone holds themselves and their fellow team members accountable for getting results, the team is more likely to be successful. Success teams understand the power of collective and they live it.

People are much more likely to like a manager who coaches them than a manager who provides little or no coaching. But it’s not a popularity contest. Leaders need to develop people because it’s the right thing to do.

Team building – every great company swears by it. For decades businesses have sought to provide new and innovative programs to their staff to improve communication, camaraderie and productivity just to name a few. However, many leaders find themselves repeating the same standard teambuilding activities… until now.

National Treasure and its sequel were big hits. The Amazing Race took Reality TV watchers on weekly adventures around the world. The DaVinci Code thrilled audiences with Tom Hanks’ clue-solving prowess.

Team building programs are becoming more and more creative…and are requiring and building heightened levels of creativity. Consider the Teambuilding, Inc. activity, You Take the Cake!, in which participants are tasked with turning ordinary sheet cakes and loads of cake supplies in to a metaphoric representation of your team and how your team will work together to drive success.

Team building programs of the 90’s took place in fields and forests. Remember ropes courses, both low and high, that allowed people to engage in a series of team activities and face self-imposed limitations while dangling from cables?

Employer-supported activities that enable their employees to support their communities can include a wide range of programs. Opportunities may include donating cell phones or clothing or volunteering with organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, United Way and Big Brothers Big Sister.

I'd like to toss this idea around with nonprofits a bit.

I never liked forced ranking systems to "measure" employee performance and thin out the ranks. For those of you not familiar with this kind of employee measurement or rating system, basically the group leader, manager, or whoever makes a list of his or her people, ranking them based on their performance. If you find yourself in the bottom 10% of the list, there's a chance you may be shown the door.

I think this is one of the oldest, yet most effective icebreakers for meetings, training, or team building sessions. The "4 Facts" exercise simply asks people to write down 4 "facts" about themselves, 3 of them true, 1 not true. We encourage participants to think of things about themselves that others don't know.

The intent of the exercise blog category (see the categories in the upper right corner) is to share team building exercises. Yes, we have exercises for sale at our Online Store and Catalog, but this area is for sharing.

Leaders, facilitators and team members often overlook the power of positive team building quotes. Not only can sharing a great quote at the right time help build credibility, it can also be motivating to those you are speaking to. I would suggest using quotes whether you are facilitating a leadership workshop, leading a team building program, or just speaking to your peers or staff.

I recently read a fascinating article in Business Week magazine "Game Plan: First Find the Leaders") that discussed an alternative approach to picking team leaders. Typically leaders are chosen for their prowess with the technical aspects of the job, their decision making skills, and their assertiveness in commanding others.