How Physical Activities Spur Team Effectiveness

Employees may turn up their noses at traditional team-building activities, expressing contempt for cringe-worthy psychological exercises and forced social situations. So do away with these contrived pursuits and embrace a more effective and exciting alternative: physical activity.

Team-based athletic contests carry a variety of benefits and can help improve overall team effectiveness.

Achieving Physical Triumph
These activities show employees that you care about their physical health and give them the opportunity to show off confidence-boosting athletic talents, according to U.S. News and World Report. In fact, some organizations parlay single outings into internal clubs that ultimately improve the lives of their workers and produce more in-sync teams.

Even the more couch-inclined workers within your organization will appreciate the occasional outdoor athletic outing if it means getting off work early and spending a few moments away from their desks.

Attaining Alignment
Sometimes, even the most effective teams struggle to unite to achieve one common goal, as talented individual contributors often have different definitions of success. Of course, in most physical contests, success amounts to one singular goal: winning. As a result, physical team-building activities often enable work groups to achieve total alignment, Fast​Company reported. In most cases, this togetherness continues long after the final basket falls or the race is won.

“We have small groups of people running together, walking together, doing intramural basketball together,” David Morken, CEO of the technology company Bandwidth, told the publication. “It has been awesome to see over the years how collectively we can get inspired.”

Building Relationships
Of course, these athletic activities also allow team members to connect on a personal level and this ultimately improves team effectiveness, Harvard Business Review found. In fact, high-functioning military units such as the Navy SEALs and U.S. Army Special Forces facilitate such moments, allowing personnel to develop deep, lasting bonds.

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