Wednesday, November 12, 2008 by Dave Blum

In my last entry, I made three predictions about corporate team building activities in the “new economy”:

Prediction 1: Team building budgets will be reduced.
Prediction 2: More team building will be done virtually.
Prediction 3: Organizations will seek out more “edutainment”.

My advice for companies offering team building exercises would be:

1) Expand your offerings to include reduced-cost programs. At Dr. Clue, for example, we’ve introduced a number of “do-it-yourself” team building exercises, intended to fit into the reduced budgets of our clients.  One of them is a 90-minute networking event that involves the solving of puzzles in a series of rotating, rapidly-changing groups.  The activity is inexpensive (because it’s DIY), it requires no travel, and it’s tons of fun.  Click here to read about our new, indoor Puzzling Networking Game.

2) Develop virtual programs for extended teams. Not every team can meet in person — or if they can, it’s at best only once a year. Organizations will increasingly be looking for team building ideas that can keep extended teams on the same page and communicating well together.  Dr. Clue has created a new virtual treasure hunt that expertly fits that purpose. Teams of people meet in cyberspace, via teleconference and web-based meeting software, and solve tricky, web-based clues and puzzles.  The emphasis is on the special communication challenges of virtual teams.  To read more, visit the full description of our Virtual Treasure Hunt.

3) Create low-cost activities with an emphasis on fun. As budgets decrease, lay-offs and restructuring are sure to follow.  Keeping up peoples’ morale will be a key issue in the coming months/years.  Team building companies need to offer a combination of “content-driven” sessions AND “just-for-fun” activities.  At Dr. Clue, we’re excited about our brand new, fun-oriented scavenger hunt.  In this fast-paced, outdoor, DIY activity, participants receive a scavenger hunt list of unusual photo challenges.  The challenge is decoding that list, which is written in a series of puzzles and codes.  Click here to read more about our Clue-Based Scavenger Hunt.

For anyone in the training industry, you will certainly be facing some challenges in the coming months.  But look at is an opportunity to expand your product line, an action that will serve you well in the long run!