Lately, I’ve had a lot of people asking me for team building ideas. While going bowling and eating pizza together are always great options, usually everyone has already done that with their team. Twice. So what else can you do?
When I managed a group of network engineers, we started a tradition of decorating our office area for Halloween. Each of us would bring in extra supplies from home and contribute. Then as we had some free time here and there, we’d slowly piece together our masterpiece.
The place we worked allowed families to come in and trick or treat in the afternoon on Halloween. Our area became the most popular spot for the kids to come check out. And we enjoyed entertaining the families.
Each year we got a little more elaborate with our decorations. We would try to do things a little bit better than we did the year before. It was so fun to see how creative we could be.
How is this team building?
While it wasn’t mandatory for our team to decorate, nor was it mandatory that we all brought something in, we all participated. It was an idea someone had to bring in a couple of decorations, and we all got on board and brought in more. Decorating gave us a chance to bond over something fun.
It was neat to see the different types of decorations each household had. Then, we worked together to figure out the best way to display everything for the optimum viewing experience. Finding different and unique ways to solve problems as a team always helps problems solving for work.
Taking on decorating our area was something we wanted to do above and beyond our regular workload. We had to find the time to decorate in-between getting our work done. It gave us the opportunity to manage our time and reach out for help from each other to make sure the “real work” was being done while the fun stuff was being worked on.
Our work place promoted bringing in families for trick or treating, which was really nice. However, as a leader, how you enforce that will either encourage participation or discourage it. Since we embraced the holiday so well, everyone on our team brought their children in to participate. Bringing some of your home life into work really allows team members to connect on another level, and increase engagement in the workplace.
Decorate for Halloween
Are you able to bring in a few decorations to your office? Encourage your team to do the same. Take over a hallway, an office, a meeting room, or two and have some fun! Then, invite your team (and others) to bring their kids by in their costumes.
Decorating for Halloween is a simple and inexpensive way to increase productivity, engagement, and build your team!