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Importance of team building

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We discussed the importance of team building with some of PA Life’s Recommended Suppliers and asked Sophie Bailey from WorkTripp, Gabriella Thorn from Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, Sian Haywood from Foxhills and Alex Hewitt, CEO of AOK Events for their expert views. These event and teambuilding experts shared their views on why team building is so important and  how it benefits the workplace. They all have unique offerings for the corporate market, read on to see what they have to offer…

What is in demand for team building?

WorkTripp, specialists in corporate retreats and teambuilding days, reveal that there is now high-demand for teams coming together for 2-3 night overnight sessions. Most teams are focused on connection and belonging (building trust) as well as communication and productivity (building alignment). Typically, teams are coming together in natural environments, such as large shared houses, villas, or boutique hotels, mostly within two hours of London, or other large cities like Lisbon, New York, or Berlin.

The trend is currently to spend 50% of time in “moments that count” e.g. shared hiking, surfing, meals together, and the other 50% muddling through business items that take deep thought. Of course, the two are completely linked as once you know one another deeply, the motivation to commit to the team mission is heightened. We’ve also seen demand for more collaborative workshops and co-working. 45% of our enquiries have a budget between £1000pp and £3000pp.

What is your top tip for PAs organising an away day?

Where you can, really understand the ‘why’ behind the away day or offsite. Consider facts like whether the team has suddenly grown and therefore building familiarity among the team is super-important? Or, is there a need to get everyone onboard for new sales targets? There is usually a ‘why’ behind a need to connect or celebrate. Once you really know that ‘why’, you can’t start creating something special that goes beyond just booking the space.

Other advice from WorkTripp was not to overpack the programme, allow for downtime and allocate time for the teams to do more adventurous activities too. It’s also important to cater for introverts as well as extroverts, allow for non-alcoholic options as well as alcohol as the ‘go-to’ refreshments. This shows that you care about everyone’s wellbeing. Lean into the opportunities that these in-person offsites offer,  by for instance. encouraging everyone to learn from one-another in open sessions, or even have difficult conversations. Try and uncover the more unique experiences so it doesn’t feel ‘off the shelf’.

What is WorkTripp’s Unique selling point?

Because offsites are happening more and more as a result of more remote and hybrid working, we are a year-round partner to companies. So, rather than just a transactional one-off booking we also help companies month to month with venue and facilitator recommendations. Also, programme building, survey creation and impact reports. For example, one company had six offsites a year as a move away from long-term office rental; that model saved them £800k a year.

WorkTripp supported their EA on delivery as an integrated partner. We can also help if you have a simple away-day or offsite: we have access to the B2B marketplace, including amazing venues set in nature. And naturally, we have awesome facilitators and retreat organisers that can get you set-up super quickly and cost effectively.

For example, we saved a Fintech customer 70% of the usual time their EA would take to find a venue by securing them a unique venue quickly. We were also able to measure the impact which she could report back internally and which helped demonstrate money well spent inc. Familiarity of team +76ppt, Clarity of values +40ppt, Big-picture vision +35ppt. Finally, we are a BCorp. We are a female-founded business and we care about human connection and the power of teams.

What makes Tottenham Hotspur Stadium stand out?

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium has so much to offer corporate groups. You can embark on the ultimate team-building day at F1 DRIVE – London. The circuit is located under the iconic South Stand and it really offers a racing experience like no other. Engineered with F1 technology, it’s great fun to put your skills to test from behind the wheel of bespoke F1-inspired karts. This holistic immersion into motorsport highlights the importance of teamwork, acknowledging that every participant plays a crucial role. Whether driving or making strategic calls.

Our team-building experience shakes things up, fostering new appreciation and friendships through intellectual, physical, and sporting challenges. Create lasting memories and strengthen your team’s bond in a day like no other.

 Contact the team today at events@f1drivelondon.com.

How does Foxhills promote a positive team environment?

Personally my team here at Foxhills are young and bubbly with a great work ethic and passionate about their careers, so my job is easier. We keep the office light-hearted as it can be very intense and busy week round. We are a close team and take it in turns each month to choose and prioritise a team building/ social aspect of the week. Since I have taken over the manager role on maternity cover, I have implemented a group lunch walk. Despite it being discretionary, we know to prioritise it as a healthy habit. It’ good to get out the office to break the day, especially since we have such beautiful scenery to explore at our doorstep. This is one way to acknowledge the importance of the wellbeing of my team.

In addition to the walks, we also have a tradition for Friday treats. Everyone takes turns to bring in a new drink or bake something. It’s become a real competition between the sales team, not surprisingly as we are all very competitive. As a sales team, we are driven by the success of our events, and the impression our guests get from the moment they enter our beautiful grounds. Foxhills’ mission, inherited from our CEO’s late Father, Mr Ian Hayton, is to feel better when you leave, than when you arrived.

Foxhills advice on how team building efforts can be improved

I think team building is a brilliant aspect of the MICE sector and there is so much to offer. We are encouraged to offer more option and to be more diverse with what we can do on-site, and by working with external suppliers. once good example is our recent investment in new padel & pickleball courts as the sport grows in popularity. We’ve also improve our golf driving range technology, have quintessentially British croquet on the lawns, sip & paint classes and so much more.

Teambuilding within events in increasingly important – in all events from away-days, corporate weeks, social events and pre-dinner entertainment. By incorporating wellness and activity into the day you spark creativity, passion and more effective workflow. Long gone are the days of large conferences without some aspect of wellness driven in. Encouraging the organisers to add a short amount of time outside or away from the meeting room is statistically proven to increase participation, engagement and interest within the team.

At Foxhills, we have beautiful walking trails around our resort, the longest takes maximum 25 minutes to complete. It’s a great way to encourage delegates and guests to enjoy the outdoors. It makes a perfect afternoon break – we can even provide takeaway coffee cups & maps to give delegates the option to explore more and get outside.

What benefits does teambuilding bring to businesses?

The science of team-building is incredibly interesting – working through a challenge with others increases oxytocin, thereby reducing blood pressure and cortisol levels. In short team building is really good for you and helps develop relationships that other events cannot!  Over the years AOK Events have arranged every imaginable team building event possible from the classic ‘it’s a knockout’ and country sporting days, to the participative days of sailing, driving and flying. What we really love is to create bespoke team-building programmes to help companies achieve really specific objectives.

For more inspiration for your teambuilding activities and offsites, visit our Recommended Suppliers page.