Author: Voravee Ruengaramrut
When there is conflict issues come out on each team, one thing that people can feel is the level of engagement in the team is already decreasing.
So, what each team react to the situation are different. However, one activity that is the most popular and various organization feel that it could bring back engagement level is “Team building.”
“Team Building” is the same with “Team Retreat”?
Team building can be stood alone and can be one part of team retreat. However, team retreat is the moment that everyone in the team can be stopped and reflect as a team to find team strategy as same as the action plan to reach the team goal together. On the other hand, team building is more about the moment of the team to be together, having fun and relax. It is more about increasing engagement level rather find the team goal or team strategy.
So, which one is better?
If your point is to create relaxing moment and moment that everyone in the team can get to know each other more, let’s go with team building activities.
However, if you are looking for solving conflict in your team or you need some productive outcome. Then, let’s go with Team retreat.
But team retreat sounds not fun at all…
As mentioned previously, team building can be a part of team retreat. We can design atmosphere that we want during team retreat. We can design team retreat to be less serious but still bringing the productive outcome by adding team building activities as one part of ice breaking and lets everyone open their mind to each other as same as bonding everyone in team together through the whole session.
For me, as a team retreat designer, I love to create roller coaster atmosphere. I always put exciting activities at first and, in the middle of each activity, I put some memorable moment and good memory related to participant and their team. So, with that feeling, they can reflect and realize some missing piece that they forgot during the busy time or the hidden power in their team that they never know. And of course, with the end of a roller coaster, it should be the most relieve and look forward for the next venture or maybe next round of the ride, I always finish this last session with commitment from everyone in team or sharing thing that are their uncomfortable and their action plan to change those things.
So, team retreat can totally solve the conflict and increasing engagement?
What team retreat can do is to be a first aid treatment for the team. The conflict needs more time and definitely, more than just a day or couple of day to resolve. From my experience, some case, one-day retreat might can be only brought out the joint problem of the team but cannot go far through the strategy or action plan as same as engagement. Just fun or moment that team sit together or talk to each other doesn’t mean the engagement already increasing. The level of engagement of each people is also different. So, team retreat cannot be a magic answer for team conflict and engagement.
If it needs more time like that why we need to try team retreat?
Because you really need time that you can leave all your work at your desk and be concentrate with your team member. It does not easy to find the time like this in the busy office that everyone will be together and talk and think in the same thing. So, team retreat does not only help team to be bonding or just only find the problem or solve your conflict, but definitely, it is a magic moment that will bring everyone to be together.
So, if you feel that your team have some conflict or problem, why not try team retreat.