Taking the time to build your team (and other necessities)

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‘AK, have you managed to finish that report yet?’ ‘Guys, we have a meeting in 5 minutes.’ ‘Kirst, where did you save the file that I need for the flyer? And did the client say anything specific about the tone that they wanted?’ If you have ever wondered what really happens behind the Yellow Door, this is it. Most of the sentences we say to one another during the day revolve around getting work done – obviously. Most of the time it is silent with only the sporadic pattering of keyboards and clicking of mice, we are one productive team. We have to be - we're in marketing.

A quote by Henry Ford comes to mind, ‘Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.’

What you won’t see at first glance is the support we give one another, the teasing, the vulnerable moments. As with any relationships, those in the office need to be worked on and invested into. These may seem of secondary importance in a marketing agency, but are the lifeblood of what we do as we need to be a cohesive unit in order to produce good work.

What’s our secret? Simple – team building activities are woven into the culture of the company. Wait a moment before the inevitable eye roll, allow us to explain.

It’s not all trust falls and motivational cheese

Most of our activities as a team are spent doing interesting things we enjoy. We have gone hiking, bowling, running (are we too active?) and eaten many meals together. ‘Team building’ doesn’t necessarily mean there have to be awkward moments of building towers with toilet paper rolls or helping each other across a rope bridge – unless that’s what you are into. You would be amazed at what simply splitting a pizza could do for your company.


One size fits all

In terms of personalities, our team could not be more diverse. We are varying ages, have different cultural backgrounds, vastly different interests and religious viewpoints. Far from hindering our team it adds texture, interesting opinions and of course helps us create content for a varied audience. Unfortunately, it also means that our approaches to work techniques and styles of communication differ, which can lead to frustration and less productivity.

Our recent year end function involved a lot of chats around the braai and sharing our views. It was refreshing and provided insight into the motivations and actions of others. The difference in the office is marked, as everyone is now taking into consideration feedback that was given and applying it to the best of their ability.

Happy people work harder

According to the book ‘The 7 Hidden reasons Employees leave’ by Leigh Branham, 89% of employers think that people leave the company for more money. 12% of employees actually leave for more money.

So why do people choose to stay at a company? I believe that those in leadership have a lot more influence than they realise. Of course it helps that both my bosses have a top Woo strength, but simply making an effort to gauge what kind of activities your employees would like to be involved in and actively engaging in those is enough to boost morale and increase productivity.

In conclusion, I would just like to say that we hope these reasons are enough to convince you to take your team out once in a while, be it for a jog or just a simple dinner. If you are not sure where to begin, check out our Instagram account for inspiration. Happy bonding!

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