Any team you become a part of – and certainly any team you are asked to lead – will be starving for the opportunity to get to know and appreciate their teammates better.
As you might have experienced, hunger can sometimes make people weak and unmotivated, or can even make them irritable and defensive… but while your own physical hunger is often easily remedied with a snack or meal, teams often suffer – for the duration of their project or season – from an unidentified and unsatisfied hunger to understand other members and build relationships.
The only way to satiate that hunger for rapport is to provide your people the time and opportunity to share their background, talents, and motivations with each other.
Whether it is a questionnaire you send out to members that can be discussed and shared later, or as a group activity where members pair off and then share responses with the group, the impact of giving your people the forum to express their personality and reasons for investment in your project cannot be overestimated.
All answers should be shared with the entire group present to allow for laughter and follow-up questions that may arise to build stronger bonds of understanding.
Strong leaders will get them to do more than just show up – they will encourage team members to open up and begin to feel a part of something bigger than themselves – and to feel cared about as an individual.
The following suggested questions all encourage your team members to offer personal information or metaphorical thinking to help identify or explain issues that may need to be addressed in your organization.
Have fun with the activity!
But also use the questions – and your people’s responses – to establish interpersonal connections and refocus energy on successfully working together to eliminate issues that may become obstacles to achieving group goals.
Top-Ten Rapport-Building Questions:
1 – What personality trait are you proudest to have inherited from your parent(s)?
2 – On a typical day, do you think our team functions more like a:
- Shiny red Ferrari;
- Double-decker tour bus;
- Rusty old truck;
- Limousine, or
- Army tank (Please also explain why… )
3 – What is the most outrageous thing you’ve done for a friend?
4 – The cartoon character I am most like is ____________ because…
5 – If our team is now under a spell cast by a powerful wizard-
…who is the wizard?
…what is the spell?
…and what must be done to remove it?
6 – What has been the most difficult lesson you ever learned?
7 – What is the most likely reason someone would want to join our organization; …what is the most likely reason someone would leave it?
8 – What was your favorite toy or possession as a child?
9 – What do you want to be doing five years from now?
10 – You will soon receive $5 million to help our company grow and prosper…
…So, how will you spend it?
These ten questions are only a starting point, but hopefully provide you with a few ideas of questions that your team can discuss and use as a platform to build relationships and rapport amongst themselves.
Winning Teammates are curious about and want to increase their awareness of others.
Anytime you can get them together and sharing information about themselves and their desires and challenges and background, that is beneficial –
And when your team is no longer starving for the rapport and information / emotional connections they truly need to develop trust and camaraderie, they will then be able to produce the Great Results you desire!
If your team is underachieving, or if you feel that your group’s culture needs a boost of energy, trust, focus, or morale – consider the benefits of a teambuilding event or custom training workshop to refocus your organization and achieve Great Results!