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. Usually Jerry teams up with Spike the bulldog, his Cousin Muscles or the little yellow canary Cuckoo and once they put their heads together and join forces, the tables turn on Tom.

We play this game of cat and mouse every day at work whether it’s about landing a sale, preparing for a presentation or figuring out how to do more with less (as many companies are these days). We need to rely on our team members because the fact is, everyone is going through the same stresses so why go through it alone? Do you even know all of your team members and coworkers? We need to take the time to get to know our neighbor so that we can think outside the box to solve our problems. Maybe they have the solution on how to stop spending our day running from Tom? Team building isn’t just needed when there are communication issues on the team. Most often, team building is a great opportunity to bond, have fun, release stress and learn how to think outside the box.

We would all be more inclined to ask for help if we got to know our coworkers better. Whether it’s during a fun team building activity like Movie Mayhem, a GeoQuest Treasure Hunt or solving a murder mystery during CSI NegativeZero, you’ll have the opportunity to work with your team and find some common ground. That stranger at the water cooler could be your “Spike” or that guy who always winds up being first in the lunch line may just be the “Cuckoo” you need.

Scooby Doo had his pals in the Mystery Machine, Yogi had Boo Boo, Fred had Barney and even Mickey has his Clubhouse friends. Cartoons don’t go in it alone so why should we?