5 Creative Ways to Build a Cohesive Team
- Program a day of physical challenges. For my clients, I have created relay events of different intensities. For instance, I will use a strength event, a power event, a steady state event, and a special skill event, in order to engage people of all skill levels. This will require the team to communicate and delegate who is needed for each role, and cause the team to overreach beyond their individual comfort zones. The bonds, encouragement, and positive feedback loops that result from these challenges will naturally permeate the workplace, leading to better problem solving and communication at work.
- Reset your nervous system with movement. A few minutes of high stress, tension, or listlessness at work can quickly turn into lost productivity. Some effective ways to do a “reset” include walking and breathing outside at lunch, performing some light yoga, or performing movement drills such as my favorite “instant warm up”.
- Reset your nervous system with breathing. Take five deep breathes, briefly hold, and then follow each inhalation with five longer exhalations. This helps prepare you for a stressful call or a big presentation. Walking meditation (away from busy streets) is also helpful. What matters most is the focused attention on your breathing and the present moment.
- Push members of your team to excel physically. This can include training with a friend after work, picking up a new sport, attending yoga, going to a rock climbing gym, etc. The physical event will naturally bolster good hormones, reduce cortisol, enhance your cardiovascular system, and provide a myriad of other benefits that far outweigh Happy Hours, binge TV, etc.
- Encourage “proactive”, rather than “reactive”, eating. I encourage my clients to start with snacks, such as almonds, apples, dried fruits, tuna, hummus and whole grain chips. Get rid of foods masquerading as health food (sugary granols bars, bright pink yogurts, sugarbomb coffee, etc.). Most Americans get too much protein late in the day, not enough early in the day, so be sure to have lean protein at breakfast and for snacks. Challenge your team to cook healthy meals on Sunday nights, so your first few days of the week start off on a great note!