During the first two months that we were part of AIESEC, other members and I formed a group, but we were not really working as a team. We knew what our goal was as a group, but we could not work with each other closely and collaboratively like a team should.
It turns out all we needed was a little break from work and some time to have fun. The leaders of AIESEC’ IFL arranged social activities for our members to come together and get to know one another. I realised that having fun with my colleagues is a very effective and efficient technique for any team to improve their teamwork.
Some people don’t distinguish between group work and team work at all, but these two things are completely different. Teamwork is when a small number of people with complementary skills achieve something together. The team leader can only implement strategies and reach a common goal with high performance from everyone on the team. Group work is when people work separately to try to achieve the goal of their leader or boss. They are accountable to one leader and are committed to developing themselves over others. If you are really part of a team, it is the success of everyone together that matters.
One of the many strategies to improve teamwork is to have fun. If you are a leader of the team, you should arrange social activities such as hanging out to eat something, playing sports, travelling to the provinces, doing charity activities, celebrating Khmer traditional ceremonies together, going to see movies and any other enjoyable activities.
“I have done many projects with my team so far, and I usually go out to eat something with my team once every three or four months,” said Chea Sopheak, who has been the youth empowerment officer at the Youth Resource Development Program Organisation (YRDP) for more than three years. “In addition, my team and I often travel together to some resorts such as Oudong Mountain Resort or the Prosith Mountain Resort.”
Furthermore, Chea Sopheak said that having fun leads to having good relationships that helps to make the team members feel less stress. This, in turn, allows them to solve problems quickly and effectively and think of new, creative concepts.
When your team does these activities together, all members will be able to have close and good relationships and work cooperatively. Having fun gives people encouragement to work.
If your team is not working efficiently or is lacking the ability to come up with new and innovative concepts, try this strategy and watch your team become happier, more productive and more creative.