Every business organization is a team and the people who work there must work as a team. But seldom does that happen. In many businesses, particularly in traditionally structured corporations, people from disparate backgrounds are simply told to work together, are assigned tasks, and given deadlines.
Workmates are not teammates who are encouraged to work together toward common goals. And this is why, training consultant Ed Ebreo says, teambuilding sessions must be initiated. With proper leadership, these sessions bring “the best results despite differences of personalities and opinions.”
The proprietor of E.C. Ebreo Consulting says the culture of teamwork must be promoted in business organizations. He ticks off a set of skills that must be developed among team members: shared leadership, empowerment, open and effective communication lines, clear and accepted norms of interaction, problem-solving, and decision-making.
Unlike what many believe, teambuilding sessions need not be held out-of-town. Instead these can be minor activities that can be incorporated in staff meetings, although these should be done regularly.
Advertising agency Admix conducts weekly no-holds-barred discussions on anything and everything under the sun: company policies, co-employees’ work habits, and even personal hurts.
Admix president and chief executive officer Angelito Pagayon says the practice works for his business because he only has a handful of people. These meetings, where the acceptable and desirable practices and attitudes are separated from the proverbial chaff, have also served as a venue to develop the agency’s corporate culture and to inculcate the company’s core values in its work force.
Issues are addressed immediately, and lame excuses beginning with “akala ko” and “sabi kasi ni” are discouraged, developing more integrity, accountability, and responsibility among the staff, says Pagayon.
Once in a while, a business organization may choose to set aside more money and expend more effort for a full-fledged teambuilding session. Of course, aside from the monetary cost (facilitator’s fee, venue, and transportation, among others), the inconvenience of setting a date so participants may spend a day or two away from their family is a primary consideration.