Team Building: Coercion or Choice?

What’s your reason for coming into work every morning? Is it your 401k, your fancy job title, or something less material, like being around an amazing team?

The latter reason may seem a little out-there to some, and if it is, that’s a shame.

We’ve all seen a slew of internet memes/jokes about disliking coworkers and coming into work because of having to be around the same people day-in and day-out, but what if that could be changed?

The answer is simple, team building. Not in the forced sense of boss-man calling a meeting and making people play twenty questions or do trust falls, because honestly, that’s pretty lame.

Team building is one of those things that can start out as something planned, and then turn into regular routine. It builds trust, encourages communication, introduces positivity, and teaches employees different ways to work together. If your employees can work better together, there’s potential for a shift in company culture.

We’ll let you in on a little secret -- in our office, team building kind of came out of nowhere; a happy accident if you may. Not to brag too much, but we have some pretty awesome employees. We snagged the cream-of-the-crop when it comes to people with awesome personalities, so team building really is not that hard for us.

We don’t do the whole corporate thing. Walk into our office on any given day and you’ll probably find, at some point, Emily embarrassingly beating someone at ping-pong, or occasionally in the morning, either Andy or Rebecca will be whipping up breakfast for everyone. Sometimes on holidays, like Cinco de Mayo, we’ll all be in our kick-butt kitchen cooking a feast. Or twelve of us will go grab lunch together. The common theme here -- we like to eat!

Our mini team building instances travel beyond our kitchen to outside of the office. On Thursdays, you can find our co-rec team dominating the sand in volleyball (come find us, we’ll take you on), often grabbing a beer afterward. Even our CEO comes out from time-to-time to teach the other teams a lesson on the court. Other times the AddShoppers ladies will head out to a cycle class together, or the men will head to the gym at lunchtime. Fitness and food, we’ve got a good balance going on over here.

The point of all this is that our team building is not staunchy, forced stuff. We choose to be a part of our company team, we choose to cook for one another, we choose to hang out together. In all of these interactions we’ve been presented with the opportunity to know one another beyond the office. Your people are more than their skill set, and recognizing that can do wonders for your work life.

Our team building isn’t traditional in the sense that there’s usually no structured lesson on dialog, but then again, we’re not a traditional company, and we’re OK what that. We’re a great company built on the back of a closely knit team and leadership. So next time your company is thinking of ways to change up the office dynamic, try the AddShoppers way. Zero regrets, 100% fun.