Presented with choices of many different varieties of corporate teambuilding activities, vendors, consultants and an allocated budget. How does a Corporate Organiser (a manager from a company in any given country) tasked to arrange a quarterly or yearly team building event for his or her colleagues, make a strategic and informed decision on which to finally choose in that particular geographic location?
Here is a list of questions that can be served as a checklist before the Corporate Organiser commits to a teambuilding Vendor or Activity.
1) Scenario – What are the corporate changes and challenges happening right now in my company? Are there major change of roles, headcount, etc.? If so, it will be great to find activities that directly address the current need or challenge facing the team.
2) Goal – What is the ultimate goal for my team? What are the key impacts and lesson takeaways? These are some corporate goals to consider:
- Recast a new corporate common vision and mission
- Create a unique corporate identity
- Establish team unity and mutual appreciation
- Increase individual skill competencies
- Instill culture of trust, openness and honesty
- Raise the level of leadership/co-leadership
- New leader assimilation
- Develop Leadership Agility and resilience to Change
- Unleash creativity in your workplace
- Train resilience and commitment to the team
- Boost team collaboration
3) Impact & Benefits – What’s in it for me, them, us? How does it benefit the individual, team and organisation? Do we learn a new tangible skill or get to accomplish something we have never done before? Do we learn new perspectives? If so, it will be great to be able to pick up a new skill or gain a new perspectives that can be applied back at work.
4) Publicity – Are there any promotional brochures or videos of the program? What do others (including those from other departments) have to say about their previous experience owith the teambuilding vendor and program? You might want to research on the testimonials and ask for referral contacts from past teambuilding corporate organisers. Get on the company’s social media page to find out, paying careful attention to the unmoderated comments.
5) Vendor Track Record – How many times have this activity been conducted? How many participants have gone through this program? Is there a proven track record? It is definitely reassuring to know that our teams are not taken in as ‘guinea pigs’ for new event tryout sessions. Teams love to be guided by patient and experienced event organisers and facilitators.
Has the Vendor won any human resource or highly recognised awards such as these.
6) Reputation – Check on Popular Blog sites for recommendations e.g. Singapore
7) Company age – When was this company incorporated? You want to engage a company with more experience in years, lowering the risk of event hiccups. But yet again, a new company could mean totally fresh new event ideas.
8) Team age range – What is the age range of everyone in the team? It will be great to find activities that suits and satisfies all possible age groups.
9) Facilitators – Are the facilitators well-trained and professional in delivering the program? This is so important to the quality that team participants are receiving. Facilitators account for 80% success of the program. Read the testimonial sections of their websites.
10) Novelty – #1 Novelty (meaning original, unusual) in terms of the unique teambuilding activity. Is this a fresh new experience for everyone in the team? Will they experience a breakthrough together? If so, it will be great if majority has not experienced the team activity, so that more of them can step out of their comfort zones together. #1 Novelty in terms of the uniqueness of the physical location. Countries such as the United States, Australia, Israel for example are potentially great locations for the great and wild outdoors. Countries such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand may be more well known for the culinary and city activities.
11) Location – Is this location central for all? Is it accessible by public transport? Are there possible food and beverage places nearby that the participants can go to before or after the activity? Locations of convenience many times, have a upper hand. Has this location been used previously? Some would prefer totally new locations.
12) Safety – What are the fire safety measures that the company adheres to? Does the vendor take effort to ensure safety for all their participants? What are the safety guidelines for this program? Where is the assembly point in case of fire? Floor plans, video and maps are great aids to reinforce this safety guidelines. It is a great practice to ensure zero accidents and great safety, for the enjoyment and sweet memory of the event day.
13) Energy & Engagement – Employee engagement is super important. No one likes boring stuff. Will the program be fully engaging, interactive for all my team members? How much potential collaboration can there be in this program? Is there something for everyone to enjoy or learn? It is important to find an activity that gets everyone fully engaged, regardless of their age, natural abilities and preferences.
14) Creative Customisation – Can I customise this program further? Great programs for example, allow for collaboration, competition or a combination of both.
15) Venue – Must this program be conducted in house or possibly at an offsite location? Is the venue comfortable for all if there is maximum attendance? Most teambuilding venues have a certain advantage such as nearby restaurants, walking distance to public transport or, just specially catered for loud indoor activities etc.
16) Meetup Discussion – Can we have a discussion with Teambuilding Vendor at the office? This usually happens when the corporate group that is targeted for teambuilding is 50pax and above. We walk through detailed program flow, safety aspects and objectives of the event day etc.
17) Food & Beverage – Are there any Food & Beverage restrictions at the chosen venue? What are the catering choices? In Singapore, it’s a well-known fact that people get to eat good food at almost every corner of this small island.
18) Duration – What’s the duration of the whole program? Is there flexibility in the start and end timing of the program? Most corporate groups choose the afternoon timing for their teambuilding sessions. Rare but some would do it early morning or in the evening, after working hours.
19) Preparation – How early can I be there at the event? How early does my team need to prepare to be present? When latest must I make a booking for this event? Wise move to prepare all that’s to be prepared way before the event date. The earlier the necessary bookings confirmed, the better.
20) Recce – Can we do a personal recce just to check on all aspects of the program flow and venue status? Normally this happens when corporate organisers are more or less firm on a event. When can I recce and meetup with a representative from the team building company?
Does the vendor run public showcases or invite organisers like myself to sit in an event just to evaluate it as an observer? Corporate organisers tend to recce the venue to ascertain space needs, double check on safety standards, report on nearest conveniences, carpark etc.
21) Atmosphere – What’s the vibes do I get when I recce this location? Look for inspiring spaces.
22) Budget – What is the total allocated budget for the different items of the event day? Most corporate organisers have the best possible decision based on venue, transportation (for big groups), facilitation, equipment and Food & Beverage etc.
23) Program Flow – What is the entire program-timeline flow? It is great to have a transparent program timeline that Corporate Organiser and Teambuilding Vendor can agree with. Customisation according to corporate needs may affect the teambuilding program energy flow. It’s best to have common understanding, moving forward to event day.
24) Setting – Competitive or Collaborative? Sales teams for example, tend to like to go competitive. Most teams would usually go for Collaborative. Indoor or Outdoor? It really depends on the overall preferences of the group and feedback from previous teambuilding experiences.
25) Equipment – Are the teambuilding equipment safe for all? Are there enough equipment for all? Are Presentation equipment such as projector, projector screen, flipcharts readily available? These equipment are standard equipment used to facilitate presentations, boss speeches and sharings.
26) Surprise – Should we inform all participants what we are about to do? Many choose to keep mum about the whole team building activity until the point of commencement of the program.
27) Media – Does the vendor provide photos and videos of the event? Media is essential as companies would like to keep sweet memories of the event date. These media also serve as proof that the team did undertake the event. Also, they serve as collateral for great internal website or newsletter posts, just to journal the milestones and keep track of the progress of the team.
28) Debrief – Does the vendor do lesson pointers on how the teambuilding pointers actually apply back to business organisation? This is the clear difference between teambonding just for fun and relaxation, compared to team building where emphasis are on the clear lesson objectives that are takeaways from the activity.
29) Scheduling – Are all participants local, overseas or mixed? It will be great to arrive at a opportune date and time that all are able to commit to.
30) Quotation Proposals – What are all the most options available out there that is most suitable for our team? Depending on the advanced time and agenda given, corporate organisers get to narrow down from maybe top 5 to top 3 activities before finally deciding.
31) Booking Time – How early do we have to book the activity? Is there an option to postpone or change timings last-minute?
32) Price & Payment mode – Is the cost of the program per pax, within my budget? What is the payment mode and payment terms? Is there a booking fee? Are there extra charges for the use of presentation equipment? What is the breakdown of the whole entire teambuilding charge? What is the minimum cost regardless of the actual attendance or absenteeism?
33) Buy-in – Is there a general buy-in from your bosses? The final hurdle really has to be this. Any activity is good to run, as long as immediate superior checks through all event details and agrees to it.
After creating this list, I am so glad Team Music is on the side of Teambuilding Vendors, ready to serve. To researching, note-taking corporate organisers out there, you guys are professional jugglers and power champions. And we look forward to meeting you very soon 🙂