It takes two days to get started with your team development. Two days that are worthwhile right now. Because one thing is certain:

Corona was a drastic break for the world of work. On both a large and small scale, companies and teams suddenly had to adapt to a completely new situation. Remote workplaces were set up in a very short time, work processes were adapted to the new framework conditions. Technically, the implementation worked very well in most companies. But what about the interpersonal situation when short personal exchanges are no longer possible, lunch is no longer shared and the grapevine has fallen silent? At the beginning of the pandemic, there was little time to think about these side effects. But since the beginning of this year at the latest, questions about internal cohesion and the effects on the team structure have become increasingly urgent in many teams. We recognise this in the great demand for team workshops. Our flow counsellors have facilitated over 100 such team days this year.

Team developments strengthen trust and improve work processes

The focus is on two topics in particular:

  1. the organisation of the joint work: processes and procedures are analysed and, if necessary, restructured.
  2. Strengthening the relationship level: The trust in each other, which has suffered under the spatial separation, is to be regained.

Improve team workflows

The first part starts regularly with an analysis of the current situation. All team members complete the following two sentences on a card: “Our cooperation is going well because …” and “It could go better if …”. Compared to an open discussion, this method has the advantage that the views and ideas of all participants are heard and seen and not only the loudest and most opinionated ones make their views known.

From this collection, the teams derive concrete measures in the course of the workshop. The range of topics is very wide: from “who makes the coffee in the morning?” to changed key figures. Everything that is important to this team or individual members has a place here. Sometimes this unties knots that seemed unsolvable even before Corona.

Surprising things can also come out of it. This was the case with a team for which I led the team days. With the aim of strengthening the team feeling, many more meetings were called during Corona, “because otherwise we wouldn’t see each other”. And what did the noticeboard say? Nine out of nine team members, including the leadership, were dissatisfied with the way the meetings were run and wanted a maximum of one meeting per week as well as “prepared meetings with an agenda” and a “time limit for the meetings”.

As a result of the analysis, not only were the meetings significantly reduced, but a real reorganisation of the team was initiated. The team redefined responsibilities, defined the use of platforms more clearly and agreed on the use of collaborative tools. A seemingly “small” issue thus became a real increase in efficiency and a simultaneous reduction in stress for everyone.

Team development: Strengthening trust and the relationship level 

And then there is the at least equally important second part of team development: the part that is about mutual trust. The core of every trust-building process in a company is a good feedback culture. This is therefore also the focus of this part of the programme. We usually start with a group task that the team has to solve together. Afterwards, the team members are asked to report on how they rate the cooperation with their colleagues. This kind of feedback is quite easy for most of the participants.

However, it is often quite different when we come to feedback in private. We have to force some teams to open up. To do this, we invite the participants to “speed dating”. The format: everyone talks to everyone else for 180 seconds. The guiding questions are: “What do I need from you for good cooperation?” and “What do I offer you for good cooperation? At the end, once everyone has “dated” each other, the atmosphere is different, more relaxed, more open, more familiar.

How the teams take the newly learned feedback culture into everyday life is of course also part of this workshop. In addition, the team members have the opportunity to address unresolved conflicts, give feedback to their leader and talk about the topic of justice and how to deal with each other.

Our motto: The team workshop belongs to the team

Therefore, an intensive preliminary discussion with the team leader and possibly even with the entire team is a matter of course for us. What surprises can reveal themselves when such a preliminary discussion does not take place? I recently described one of them in a flow-weekly on LinkedIn.

The reward for intensive preparation is then often the feedback: “We should have done something like this much earlier.”

With this in mind: don’t hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to advise you on your team workshops.

And if you want to get to know yourself and your team better: Team workshops with the JPP personality profile strengthen mutual understanding and promote the team’s communication skills. This investment also pays off in terms of trust and efficiency.

Here’s to good teamwork.

Yours, Silke Engel