Saturday, 21 April 2012

Team Building

Surely many of you have been subjected to these...Events.

Some management fool decides that in order to assemble a good team, they must force together a bunch of strangers and make them do things.

Who the hell thinks this is a good idea? Do they not realise that every single shy person loathes them. They're not given enough time to suss the terrain before introducing themselves to people, they have to stand up in front of strangers and reveal things. Torture.

Nothing worse than subjecting risk averse people to abseiling or things like that, it isn't empowering, it's a subtle form of domination.

I never had problems with these courses myself even though I hated the artificiality of them, I care not for others until I know them, and have no real shame or boundary to honestly expressing myself e.g. "My name is X, and I hate this kind of activity. I hope to survive this week by doing as little as possible and sitting quietly in the corner of the bar. If anybody prefers chat over enforced jocularity, then join me." The trainer usually shits them-self at this point, but I make the usual one of two excellent friends out of it, and everybody else knows not to bother me.

When being forced into "Decision making" activities with a new group, I resent how some prig always tries to be the leader, and the sheep instantly turn to them. When it becomes apparent that they're making poor decisions, I usually speak for the first time and stop the self anointed leader in their tracks with a simple and direct solution. I'm usually ignored until the team fucks up, and then the sheep decide that maybe I am worth something.

Now I have just had to 'lead' one of these events and the feedback I have received from the participants has been superb. Why? Simple. I opened with a session in the bar, saw who sat together, ensured that everybody had a friend when it came to actually doing something. We went to museums, we went to a race meeting at night. We drove go-karts and the leader-board was an 'only if you want to,' affair. We went to a comedy club, and my lectures were all very matter of fact and free of bullshit and I invited people to give their own examples rather than simply talk at them with my ideas.


Curmudgeon said...

Oh, I've been to these things in the past, and I recognise everything you say.

But, even if done well, do they really achieve anything that taking the team out to lunch once in a while doesn't?

Dripfed said...

Indeed not...A good meal with your immediate team is much better than being forced to endure a couple of days with 'Brian from sales' who thinks the world belongs to him and we're all lesser beings. I hate Brians, and they hate me because I point out how much I despise them.