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Team-building activities help teams learn trust and respect for one another. Whether a team is working on a big project or trying to win a big game, mutual respect is important to the team's success as well as its morale. If your team is having trouble getting along, leading them through a few team-building exercises that show respect for each other can help them see past their differences toward a common goal.
This activity helps partners learn trust and respect for one another. You'll need a large, open area, preferably with a soft cover such as grass, sand or rubber. Break the team into pairs and blindfold one member of each pair. The seeing partner takes the hand of the blindfolded partner and leads them across the open area, starting at a slow walk. Then the walk accelerates to a fast walk, a slow jog, a fast jog, and finally a run. Allow about one minute for each speed of movement, or as long as it takes to cross the open area. Pass the blindfold off to the other person and repeat, then bring the team together to discuss the experience.
Have the team split into pairs once again and stand facing each other a comfortable distance apart. Have them step closer to one another, maintaining eye contact but not touching one another. Then have them step apart so they are further away than they would be in a normal conversation. Have each team describe what the different distances from their partners felt like and how distance and eye contact might affect communication and respect among team members.
One way to build respect among team members is to have them work toward a common goal. You can make setting the team's goals for its next season, game, or project the common goal of a team-building session. Have team members brainstorm goals for the team to reach during its season. Write each goal on a large pad or chalkboard. Then go through the goals and have the team discuss the pros and cons of each. Specify that only positive or constructive comments are allowed. Write the team's final goals on a separate piece of paper or posterboard and keep this list where team members will see it regularly.
A.L. Kennedy is a professional grant writer and nonprofit consultant. She has been writing and editing for various nonfiction publications since 2004. Her work includes various articles on nonprofit law, human resources, health and fitness for both print and online publications. She has a Bachelor of Arts from the University of South Alabama.