What’s Missing From the Average Team Building Seminar?
Human beings naturally form teams. It’s an ability that is literally written into our DNA. But, if that’s so, why do so many teams demonstrate mediocre performance or worse?
It’s not that we have forgotten how to work together as high-performing teams. It’s that modern organizations and the demands of modern work are radically different from the tribal lives our ancestors lived for tens of thousands of years. What do we need to do to adapt our ancient instincts for working together as a team to the modern environment?
Team building seminars have been part of the solution for many decades. Whether it’s a ropes course, playing music together, assembling spaghetti and marshmallows to form towers or an endless array of other activities, such activities are important to building teams. Unlike our ancestors, we form, dissolve, and reform teams on a frequent basis in the modern world of work. A team building program provides team members an opportunity to get to know each other, and focuses on building one of the most important ingredients in any team – trust in the project, and in fellow team members.
But, the average team building seminar lacks relevance. After the seminar, most teams don’t go back to work crossing rope bridges, playing in a band, or making spaghetti towers. They return to something quite different – the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous Twenty-First Century market, and any one of a thousand tasks that could be performed for their businesses. What modern teams need to succeed is professional team building that provides valuable familiarization and trust-building opportunities while also teaching transferable team skills that participants can take directly back to their real working world.
Afterburner’s Team Building Programs
At Afterburner, we understand the science and the processes that contribute to building high-performing teams. And, we have built the most impactful, engaging, and memorable team building seminar in the world using modern cognitive science and the inspiration and experience of elite military teams.
Our combined military experiences offer us real-world lessons in the importance of becoming a cohesive team, and offers direct insight into how a high-performance team is built and then maintained. We’ve brought the full breadth and depth of our experience into tailoring the best, highest-performing team building seminar possible.
We teach a simple, scalable continuous improvement process that we call Flawless ExecutionSM in our Afterburner team building seminars while we challenge teams to use that process to solve a complex role-playing scenario.
- Our programs drop teams into stressful problem-solving scenarios where each member possesses critical information that must be shared and then assembled collaboratively in order to create a viable solution.Complexity and ambiguity abound as the team races against the clock while unforeseen changes to the scenario emerge. The challenge presented forces team members to rely on each other to succeed: they must handle task delegation, team communication, manage their information, and work to come up with actionable solutions with a limited amount of time. But solutions are rarely perfect and mistakes will almost certainly be made. As the team learns of their errors they must confront them as a team, learn from them, and, in the process, build greater trust among each other. It’s our goal in these programs to simulate the kinds of scenarios and conditions that will be relevant once the training program ends and the participants return to their businesses.
- The scenario is also designed to test their understanding of Flawless ExecutionSMthat is presented to them before the role-playing scenario is conducted. Often, errors occur because the team fails to apply these simple methods that are applicable to any situation, industry or profession. As their performance as a team is assessed, teams learn how they could have better applied Flawless Execution methods and generate actionable lessons learned so that they can improve. The steps to the Flawless Execution model, and the steps we want to instill in our team building seminars, are:
- Plan: come up with your strategic plan for moving forward.
- Brief: This should be a short meeting, and is intended to make sure everyone is on the same page.
- Execution: Now that your time is aligned, it’s time to make the plan happen.
- Debrief: debriefing is critical for finding the causes of your successes, so that they can be applied to every level of your organization
- Participant teams learn that Flawless Execution is an iterative and agile methodology that will help them collaborate and work together as teams while providing a simple, scalable and easily reproducible process for continuous improvement. What’s more is that it is immediately relevant and applicable to any new work challenges.
How We Build Agile Teams
Agile teams, the experience of setting an objective, planning toward it, communicating and executing that plan, and then learning from it so that the team can continuously improve and adapt to changing circumstances and demands, is the objective of our team building seminar.
Because the Flawless Execution methodology is simple, it can be learned quickly and applied immediately. Its simplicity enables great speed to mastery. When a team as a whole can learn, apply, and then iterate the methodology rapidly from one tasking or project to another the team becomes agile. Make a plan; execute it well; learn from your mistakes, and do it all better next time.
If you’re interested in working with us in one of our team building seminars, please contact us today. We have an expert team that can help your business rise to the challenges of tomorrow.