We all know how important it is to have staff that don’t just tolerate one another but actually like each other. A team that works well together and communicates clearly is priceless, making your job easier (and more profitable) in the process.
To help you in that endeavor, I want to share some fun team building exercises you can incorporate into your onboarding process. By organizing some simple (but fun) on-boarding activities you’ll ensure new team members feel welcomed and excited about working with you.
Here are 4 simple onboarding suggestions to help you build a better team:
- Connect the New with the Old
Connect new team members with existing staff directly (that is, without you/management present). This lets new hires ask honest questions — especially questions they might not be comfortable asking management directly.
You can do this via one-on-one meetings with team members and/or via social media, such as a private Facebook group.
A private Facebook group lets your team connect off the clock too so they can learn from one another, break the ice, and get a feel for their new colleagues. They can coordinate events with one another as well, establishing deeper friendships that will ensure you have a well-connected team.
- Host a Welcome (and Farewell) Party
Consider hosting a big welcome event where your team can get together to celebrate, play games, eat, and maybe share a couple of drinks. Doing this at the start of the season builds camaraderie and helps everyone get on the same page.
Additionally, host another event at the end of the season to celebrate a job well done. By building community this way, you’ll create a tight-knit team. This boosts the chances that team members will return the following year. Solidifying that seasonal magic creates life time connectsion each and every season.
- Organize a Staff Talent Show
One way to break the ice is to host a staff talent show. It’s a fun, goofy way to get everyone together to have a good time. It’s a good way to get groups talking in a relaxed, laid-back atmosphere. Both new and returning team members can take part (as well as management), which will build stronger bonds between your staff as a whole. Throw in some music, drinks, and food and you’ve got a lively kick-off event!
- Take a Team Trip
Are there any noteworthy attractions near you? This could be anything from a ski hill or scenic lake to a national park or monument. If so, consider planning a team day trip to visit.
Your team can chat with one another on the drive to and from the location and then they can have fun hiking, swimming, skiing, or doing whatever else you want to organize! It’s a surefire way to help break the ice and build fast friendships.
- Family Dinners
Everyone loves free food. Its even better in a family style setting. Kick up a notch and make it a weekly tradition. What better way to bring new employees together with one another than offering up free food for everyone. At a set time and place. I know a few of the staff here at My Adventure Jobs loved the free family dinners they offered employees every Thursday night. Especially at the beginning of the season when money is tight, but mostly because it was a way to meet all the new employees working in various departments.
- Company Olympics
Much like the above mentioned talent show offering up a weekend of competition for employees early on in the season is a great way to build comradery. My first season at Signal Mountain Lodge HR held a talent show, company olympics, and a softball league before the season ever started. Most of the employees nicknamed SML an adult’s summer camp, and was one of the most memorable summers of my life.
We all know how important it is to have your team get along and communicate well with one another. These are just a few helpful suggestions to get the ball rolling. Feel free to incorporate as many as you’d like into your next onboarding. Remember though you have the ability to set the example and pace of the upcoming season. Three of my unforgettable summers included an employer that rallied up the staff for a pre season talent show, company olympics, softball league. Along with in season events like Sadie Hawkins dance, Christmas & Easter in July. Followed by an end of the season bonfire, Halloween party and Thanksgiving send off dinner. The more you do for your staff they more they will do for you.
What are some of your favorite or most successful on-boarding activities? Let us know in the comments!