A little team building experience can be great at bringing staff members together at the beginning of each year. Notice that I didn't say PAID staff members? In a small congregation the staff members include a number of volunteers. A while ago I wrote something for a Lutheran camp who wanted to start providing some team building experiences for professional church workers. I figure it's a good time to share that information with the rest of you.
The goal of team building is to build a shared vision and/or mission and to give people a chance to bond as a team and plan for the year.
Keys for building a successful team building experience:
- Begin and end the experience in the Word and pray for each other, the day, and the congregation.
- Let the team help choose the schedule and activities.
- Let the team choose the goals for the experience.
- Include age appropriate activities for building trust and a team attitude (simple physical team building games or if a camp is near and you have the budget to go off-site, try the high ropes and/or challenge course activities).
- Include opportunities throughout the day for "real" work like annual or strategic planning.
- Have the team complete an assessment about whether or not the goals were reached after the experience.
- Don't forget: it never hurts to have a few Bible study goals for a leadership team as well!