Importance of team building and HRM games

By Priya Chetty on February 8, 2014

With the increasing dynamics in external and internal environments in an organization, one of the biggest challenge in front of the corporate world is to retain the talented pool of employees in the organization (Barney, 1991; Prince, 2003; Sinangil, 2004).

The difference between the market leader and the follower does not come from the capital or the technology in isolation. But it is the people in the organization who are working with unique blend of expertise and creativity which broadens the gap in the market share and ensures sustainable competitiveness (Holland, Sheahan, & De Cieri, 2007). In the advent of increasing rate of competition and changing pattern of corporate working it is important to retain employees. Employees are frequently poached by competitors with lucrative offers and benefits (Zheng and Lamond, 2010).

Retaining employees through team building exercises

Team building is an upcoming phenomenon through which human resource managers in various organizations are trying to balance the issue of attrition and retention (Arthur, 1994; Buck and Watson, 2002; Samuel and Chipunza, 2009). In team building exercises, employees form different teams and they work together as a member of the team rather than an individual. Team building exercises also helps employees to improve their productivity incentives. Productivity Incentive is the bonus remuneration, an employee gets for his/her excellent working. When productivity incentive is given to the group it improves cooperation and coordination between the employees. Which results in increased degree of organizational commitment and job satisfaction and improved rate of retention of employees (Dole & Schroeder, 2001; Budhwar&Mellahi,  2007).

Games that boosts  team building

There is a number of team building games through which co-ordination between the team members can be enhanced and few of them are listed below:

  1. Co-ordination games: Let the team face a challenge of completing a connected task under which the members can help each other to complete their assigned job and the incentives are attached to the final completion of task itself.
  2. Trust building games: Give the team a series of activities under which members have to trust on each other for the completion of the task and then review the performance and the hurdle areas.
  3. Concentration building games: Give activities to the participants in which they have to concentrate over certain things/activities and then on mutual understanding and concrete evaluation the task completion is recorded.
  4. Ice breaking games: Make team and ask the participants to disclose interesting facts about themselves to each other and then ask all the participants to share maximum information between them (Note: Members should not share confidential or personal data).

Problem Solving Games: Here, pictures, videos and audio can be used. Each team is given a picture/video/audio and all participants are asked to generate meaning out of it according to their thought process and share with each other.

Team building games and activities yield high returns to:

Organizations through

  • Increased team productivity and effectiveness.
  • Higher employee retention and lower absenteeism rate.
  • Decreased rate of disputes and organizational conflicts.
  • Increased mutual understanding.
  • Balanced acceptability of corporate culture.

Employees through

  • Comfort in the working environment.
  • Open communication channels.
  • Acceptability of team norms.
  • Balanced disciplinary conduct.
  • Higher group cohesiveness and sustainability.

Team building exercises play an important role

Team building games play an important role in the process of team building. Through these games the intensity of employee engagement can be boosted. An employee who is engaged emotionally, cognitively and personally shows true commitment by exceeding his/ her superior’s expectations from the assigned job (Bagraim, Cunningham, Potgieter and Viedge (2007). Engaged employees understand their importance in their assigned jobs, and as a result, are more responsible, accountable and innovative (Bagraim et. al. (2007)). This further ensures employee satisfaction in the job.

As Schuler and Jackson (2006) suggested that in order to reduce employee turnover an organization should diagnose and look for reasons that forces employees to switch jobs. HRM & Team Building Games leads to provide freedom to the team members through which the satisfaction level increases and retention level decreases.

Mobley, Griffeth, Hand, & Meglino (1979) list “allowing employees freedom to control their work” as a major best practice in employee retention. Through team building games and exercises retention of good talents can be ensured.


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Priya is the co-founder and Managing Partner of Project Guru, a research and analytics firm based in Gurgaon. She is responsible for the human resource planning and operations functions. Her expertise in analytics has been used in a number of service-based industries like education and financial services.

Her foundational educational is from St. Xaviers High School (Mumbai). She also holds MBA degree in Marketing and Finance from the Indian Institute of Planning and Management, Delhi (2008).

Some of the notable projects she has worked on include:

  • Using systems thinking to improve sustainability in operations: A study carried out in Malaysia in partnership with Universiti Kuala Lumpur.
  • Assessing customer satisfaction with in-house doctors of Jiva Ayurveda (a project executed for the company)
  • Predicting the potential impact of green hydrogen microgirds (A project executed for the Government of South Africa)

She is a key contributor to the in-house research platform Knowledge Tank.

She currently holds over 300 citations from her contributions to the platform.

She has also been a guest speaker at various institutes such as JIMS (Delhi), BPIT (Delhi), and SVU (Tirupati).



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