Team building activities are essential to keep company employees engaged with one another and build rapport outside of the working environment. It is very common nowadays to see companies taking initiatives in organizing such activities in one way or another, be it inside the office or having fun outside. The reason behind is simple. 86% of employees and executives cite a lack of collaboration or ineffective communication for workplace failures. So companies must take note of such alarming facts and set the team direction right through proper team building planning and activities.
There is a wide selection of team building activities up for pick. However, apart from having a good time with one another, learning something new is also equally important for a healthy personal growth of employees. We would not mind letting workers have fun, but gaining new knowledge or exploring new skills would serve as a bonus too! That’s where experiential team building activities come in.
Importance of Experiential Learning that shapes the future of learning
So let’s delve into what is experiential learning in the first place.
According to Wikipedia, “Experiential learning also known as (EXL) is the process of learning through experience, and is more specifically defined as “learning through reflection on doing”
What this means in layman’s term is to learn something through repetitive actions while reflecting on what you have learned and apply the newly-gained knowledge in different situations.
What’s wrong with the current learning methodology? Well, when Hermann Ebbinghaus founded the learning curve more than a hundred years ago, he has successfully described the relationship between memory and time. Based on his comprehensive research, he found out that the absorption rate during a lecture is at 100% on day one and subsequently leads to a 50-80% loss of learning from the second day onward. More surprisingly, if the action of learning is not revised or applied, the retention rate of that specific learning amounts to a mere 2-3% at the end of 1 month.
So how is experiential learning important in this regard?
- Accelerated Learning Curve – Through learning by doing, experiential learning methodology emphasizes critical thinking, problem-solving and decision-making skills.
- Subject to Real Life Simulation Learning – Real-life scenarios used as simulation learning would subject the individual to learn through acute observation and attentiveness to the surroundings.
- Have the opportunity to put theory into practice – Practising the theory being learned would enhance memory and retain the knowledge for a longer-term.
- Heightened engagement level – Individuals would be engaged with the outcome of a learning course directly that instills a high level of ownership.
Above are some of the most important benefits of going through experiential learning. What about the top team building activities that focus on this concept where companies could provide their employees to enjoy and learn at the same time?
2020 Top Experiential Team Building Activities in Malaysia
Yes, you heard it right, baking! It is not the typical baking session where individuals try to complete their “masterpiece” in as short a time as possible. The activity we are talking about here is a big baking class catered to a group of participants whose aim is to create a culinary delight together! It does not matter if you know just a thing or two about baking, but how you organize the different tasks to complete the baking process. Under close guidance from a professional baker, your relationship with your co-workers and the way you communicate with each other would be put to the test.
Could a mere baking class help in forming a strong bond within a team? Well, surprisingly, it could! Nothing beats the exhilaration of creating something together and enjoying it thereafter with a delightful taste. Learning all the fundamental skills like molding dough, mixing the different ingredients as well as beating the batter would allow participants to get used to the actions that would be drilled into their memory. Putting such skills into repetitive practice together within the team would enhance camaraderie among colleagues and pull the team closer. The session will not be deemed as a task, but a light moment activity that shapes the spirit of the team and drives employee self-esteem.
Here’s a natural twist in the team bonding activities that companies could organize for their employees. A one-day exploration trip into the jungle! It might be daunting to trek through the uneven trail or keeping oneself balanced above the swarming tree roots and trunks, but doing it together with a bunch of people gives a starkly different feel. One of the best moments participating in jungle trekking is the opportunity to experience nature and learn how to appreciate the hidden gem given by mother earth. There’s no better way to immerse oneself in the soothing atmosphere and fresh air after a period of huff and puff in the workplace.
One might argue that having a walk or a jog in the park will do the same good as jungle trekking. However, apart from getting healthier by subjecting your body to a robust workout, you would not have as much awe and gratitude for the environment as compared to jungle trekking. Moreover, trekking with your colleagues could create lifelong friendships. You will be able to spend more time bonding with members you are not that familiar, giving motivation and provide support for each other to keep going and persevere when the trail gets rough. Besides, while you are trekking, it is common to share all the fun memories and experiences with one another. Such interactions will surely overcome any differences and help you improve your interpersonal skills. Unbeknown to you, such experiential team bonding wilderness trek would very well bring out the extrovert personality that is very essential to flourish in the workplace!
3. Survivor Challenge
Have you watched the reality TV show The Survivor? It’s a series of superbly intriguing activities that test not only your skills, knowledge, agility, and ability to adapt to different surroundings, but also serves up rounds after rounds of obstacles that challenge how good your teamwork is. Well, you could have your own Survivor experiential team building challenge too! All you need to do is to engage quality team building companies that provide such activity or you could have your team to craft out a simpler version of Survivor challenge. Of course, there would be no big-scale event site put in places like the daunting deserted islands and extreme conditions with no food, water or necessity. However, the activity could be fine-tuned to include relevant obstacles and interesting rules.
Divide your team into several groups which are called tribes and put the strength of each tribe to the test through solving problems in a fun and interactive way. The organizers could brainstorm several challenges that could require a great amount of teamwork and collaboration with the final aim of getting participants to join in wholeheartedly and experience every emotional roller coaster that comes along with the problem-solving cycles. Let the team work out solutions for each problem and let them rejoice through fantastic rewards or sort out the differences when certain obstacles are tackled head-on without success. Get them to revel in the activities that demand a mixture of skills, strategy, teamwork, and knowledge. Have them to progress with renewed confidence each time a challenge is being overcome and move through various elimination stages. Survivor challenge would present to you a golden opportunity to observe the true personality of the members, their talents, as well as their strengths and weaknesses. In terms of experiential learning, Survivor is a great team-building event to take advantage of the great outdoors and a picturesque location outside of the office environment. It will help to simulate situations that requires strategy, teamwork, communication, and leadership in a fun and recreational scenario.
The ultimate horror-themed team-building activity from My Weekend Plan, Kimomochi presents a superbly experiential game that serves up fun, thrill and teamwork elements. The common team building activities we see today revolve around settings and sites that encourage liveliness and cheerfulness. However, brace yourself with the hotly sought-after creepy game that test collaboration among team members to the extreme! Dividing the group into victims and the folklore apparition Kimomochi, the group members are required to complete some quests in time and sheer darkness. With leading group members blindfolded, all the victims need to do is to convey information systematically and accurately to ensure the team’s survival and final success while looking out for the lurking danger around them.
Giving the team a spooky team-building experience, such close interaction would break the ice among team members who are not familiar with one another and encourages effective communication to win a quest. Participants will get to have the first-hand experience in a horror-themed setting and strive to work together to overcome obstacles. In this way, your team members will learn the importance of effective communication and precise information passing. Not only would they appreciate such values, but they will also cherish the experiential event as it not only provides a fun time for the whole company but a memorable outing worth to be tied down in the memory lane.
5. Amazing Race
Being another popular reality TV show, Amazing Race has captured the hearts and interests of many viewers due to its tough yet intensely satisfying routine. For those who have not heard of this widely recognizable show, it is strongly recommended for individuals who wish to have a glimpse into how a challenging team building activity could be. Rounds after rounds of obstacles, detours, energy-sapping puzzles and lively discussions among team members have propelled the show to be one of the most thrilling events on earth. The scope of Amazing Race is global, encompassing European continents to South-East Asia. Discovering and learning all the different cultures and warm interactions with the locals have also led to the show being replicated in different versions.
So could a company afford a mini Amazing Race? No doubt about that! Get your company staff to plan along with all the obstacles in different sites and locations (obviously leaving out the multi-country traveling part). Allow participants to learn different skill sets and the virtue of teamwork through hands-on challenges. Let them experience the adrenaline-pumping “mad-hour rush” for obstacles that have time limit put in place and challenge their persistence and perseverance by rewarding the final winning team with lucrative prizes. Apart from picking up new skills along the way, the bonding among team members would be closer than ever!
2020 is a brand new year for all companies and the top-level executives have the right and responsibility to drive the team forward in healthy progress. Without proper team-building activities, the cohesion among working staff could not be built easily and concretely. How frequently we interact with our colleagues is a determining factor of how efficient our work task would be completed.
Keep this in mind:
28 percent of a single workday is dedicated to reading and responding to emails.
26 percent of a working day is typically spent by CEOs in multinational companies on the phone.
50 percent is the portion of a senior manager’s typical workday dedicated to meetings.
There’s nothing more helpful than a solid experiential team building activities for all individuals to group and have a wonderful time.
Think team efficiency, think team building. Feel free to contact us to have a customized team building plan crafted out just for you!