We find useful to share a map of the 10 things to know about team building, which is now part of the collective corporate imagination and has become a quite large field.
That’s why there is sometimes a lot of confusion and it is often difficult, for those who aren’t experts, to choose which activity suits the event.
In this article, we will describe practically the basic things to know in order to choose the right type of activity for your corporate team building.
Furthermore, you can learn more about this topic in the following articles:
We at OneBeat are a music team building agency, so we will only deal with these kind of activities in this article.
Let’s start with the following map about the 10 things to know about team building:
1. TEAM BUILDING OR EXPERIENTIAL TRAINING?
There is confusion between these two terminologies that have a different meaning even if sometimes are used for the same purpose.
Here we will not deal with the topic from an academic point of view, but in the practical application that each Event Organizer or HR Manager has to face in the organization of an activity.
The team building is an activity which goes beyond the professional context.
The main purpose is to leave a strong feeling of union and integration by reaching a final result which was felt as difficult or unreachable at the beginning.
During or at the end of the team building, there is a possibility to create some communication windows to share the learning metaphors agreed with the company.
However, the metaphors are developed in form of “pills”, without a final debriefing or a mutual confrontation between the team members.
On the other hand, the main purpose of the experiential training is to work on the learning metaphors by creating a final debriefing to discuss, exchange reactions and share feelings in order to collect the logical-rational and the emotional-affective feedback about the experience.
This activity also has an emotional power but the main purpose is to understand the cognitive and behavioral dynamics through the use of metaphor, which will be used to stimulate positive changes within the team.
The main difference of an experiential training is a final debriefing of at least 40 minutes, which has the aim to transfer in the professional role the new learnings experienced during the activity.
To make it simple in a coarse way, the scale of values in team building is 70% emotion and 30% training, while the experiential training is 70% training and 30% emotion.
Together with the other activities, we have the Ice-breaker or Energizer which is short: from 5 up to 30 minutes.
The purpose is to break the ice and to energize participants during a conference or a congress in order to create team spirit in a short time.
The strength of an Ice-breaker is the easy and quicky setup of the place which makes it ideal for big numbers.
This is why it is recommended for at least 100 people even if, in some cases, it can be applied also to smaller numbers.
2. NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS
The number of participants is very important to define the type of activity.
First of all the experiential training is only possible within a certain number of people otherwise it becomes impossible to have a mutual feedback from each person.
To have an effective debriefing and have everyone involved, the group should be formed by maximum 15 people, with the possibility to reach 40 people if it is possible to work in smaller teams.
For an experiential training activity it is necessary to have a maximum of 40 people, otherwise it is better to choose a team building event.
The only alternative for larger numbers is to have the a classroom training after the activity, which doesn’t require an ongoing interaction between participants.
3. DURATION OF THE ACTIVITY
To have an effective experiential training, with our musical activities, we need at least 2 hours.
My suggestion is to have minimum 3 hours to reach a better result.
It is also ideal to do the activity in the morning or the first half of the afternoon.
If the activity is from 5pm to 8pm and the participants had meetings before, it is very likely that they will be tired without the energy to create an effective debriefing.
If the purpose is to build a team through funny and engaging activities at the end or during a break of the meeting, the ideal is to have a team building performance.
That’s why it is important to really believe in the experiential training, to give it the right amount of time, otherwise it is better to organize a team building activity.
If you have less than 30 minutes an Ice-breaker is what you need.
At this point we have a clear idea of the activity to choose. Here are some example:
- Team Building: if we have 1h 30min with 70 people, from 6pm until the end of the event.
- Experiential Training: if we have a half day with 25 people and the purpose to have a constructive confrontation between the team members.
- Ice-Breaker: if we have 20 minutes during a convention with 300 people where we want to burst the energy and create a moment of relationship between people who rarely meet to each other.
4. LOCATION – SPACE
Depending on the budget and the number of participants, there is the possibility to have one or more meeting rooms.
If, for example, there is just one big hall, we can’t consider activities with different small groups.
Usually the team building activity is decided after the reservation of the location, so it is important to adapt the activity to the place booked.
In this case it is difficult to give an idea of all the possibilities available because there are hundreds of them.
It is important for the company to coordinate with the team building agency in order to understand which one is the right activity, also depending on the rooms and location.
5. WHEN AND WHY WE MAKE AN ACTIVITY
Kick off meeting, training course, Christmas party, yearly convention, special event: there are many possibilities to choose an activity.
Even if this is not a primary aspect, it can be useful to consider it while choosing the format.
There is often a possibility to have an experiential training, but in some special occasions it’s the perfect thing to do.
This activity is ideal for a corporate training or a private meeting, especially if organized inside the company.
It is also perfect during a change management or a merge of companies which have been competitors on the market.
A team building activity is ideal for a Christmas party or a kick off meetings with new annual goals, an incentive, anniversaries or a time slot of free time during a convention, congress or conference.
When there are at least 100 people with a short time the team building can be replaced by an ice-breaker.
Finally there are what we, at OneBeat, call team building shows.
These activities are customized for a big number of participants (usually from at least 300 people) within special events with high budgets or during very important corporate conventions.
The goal is to create an unforgettable show, full of surprises and special effects, where the participants are the stars of a special experience beyond the classical team building.
6. DRUM AND PERCUSSION ACTIVITIES
Now we talk about our musical activities, starting from the most popular one.
We will give you just a quick overview on the different team building activities, for further information you can visit this website.
The drum and percussion activities like Drum Circle, Corporate Orchestra, Rock Tribe Band and The Drum & Dance Show can be considered as team building, experiential training or team building show depending on the the context desired.
These are not suitable for an ice-breaker for organizational and logistic issues.
A big number of participants with 30 minutes available need an easy and light preparation which doesn’t apply to drums.
Usually to have drum and percussion activities we need at least 45 minutes.
7. SINGING ACTIVITIES
Our voice is our inner instrument, it comes directly from inside us without any other mean (musical instruments).
To sing can be sometimes harder compare to other instruments, but at the same time to sing in a choir gives the possibility to overcome our fear.
Our voice is heard with all the other voices and even the small mistakes merge in the ensemble giving a nice outcome.
The ideal time for this activity is to have 2 hours, but it is also possible to have a team building activity in just one hour.
Our activities are the Choir and the Corporate Jingle, the latter is one of our signature projects on the team building market.
Thanks to the use of the CircleSinging it is also possible to have an Ice-breaker with singing: it s an international innovation in our repertoire.
The singing activity is the most versatile as it adapts to every context.
8. BOOMWHACKERS AND BODY MUSIC ACTIVITIES
Boomwhackers and Body Music (or body percussion) are quick activities easy to organize, ideal for an Ice-breaker or Energizer.
We have many requests when the purpose is to create a team in a short time and we are very popular in this activities.
During our team building activities we always start with some Body Music because it is really entertaining and it also introduce rhythm and music in an easy way.
Even if it is less indicated, it is also possible to introduce Boomwhackers in other team building activities in order to light up the choreography with all the different colors.
9. RECYCLING AND EVERYDAY USE MATERIAL ACTIVITIES
We present the Drum Stomp, our sustainable format which is not only a musical activity, but a real laboratory to make musical instruments with recycling materials.
It is surprising and unexpected activity which changes the perception about making music, rediscovering its playful, interactive and participate dimension.
It is suitable for a team building activity or an experiential training. The ideal duration is 2 hours.
10. PRICES AND PAYMENTS
Here we arrived at the last topic of the 10 things to know about team building.
We won’t share in this article our pirce list, because the costs change according to the activity, but we want to be transparent about how we set the price.
Given that each agency can have a different method, we would like to share what we think it is the universal and clear way to set the prices.
One important parameter is the number of participants and, as a consequence, the quantity of musical instruments to bring and the number of trainers needed.
The duration of the activity is NOT an important parameter to consider.
An example? If we make a Drum Circle for 150 people, it is not important if the activity lasts 45 minutes or 2 hours, beacuse we need the same number of instruments to set, the same number of trainers to manage and the same travel time and expenses.
We can say that within the 2 hours, the price of the activity is the same regardless of the duration of the team building.
If the request is for a half or full day activity, the price can be higher depending on the sessions and trainers needed.
Barring exceptions or special requests the extra costs are usually reasonable.
Travel time and expenses affect from 5 to 10% of the total amount, barring exceptions.
It is supposed that local agency can have lower prices but it is not true.
We are well organized expert and we have everything needed to make your event happen.
Furthermore, we are forward-looking, and we have support points throughout the country to have the material ready at the place without a long transportation.
We also have support points abroad thanks to an international network and we support a smart working policy.
Regarding the payment method it is important to understand that a deposit is needed as a form of protection from possible unpaid bills (luckily it is very rare), but also to confirm the event and to start the organization with the first expenses to face.
Furthermore, during peak months, there is a possibility of more events in the same day, so we need to organize a bigger number of trainers.
Consequently, without a deposit, a cancellation (even for reasonable matters) would be a financial loss for the team building agency.
Regarding the terms of payments, as we don’t “produce”, many agencies set the payment at the date of the event, others follow the company policy.
We think that a good compromise can be 30 days from the date of the event.
We hope you find this map useful in order to choose the best activity for your event and we are at your full disposal for any further information regarding Music Team Building Activities at firstname.lastname@example.org.