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August 24, 2012

Please, No More Trust Falls!

US News & World Report 5.13

Who knew those awkward team-building exercises in high school would continue to haunt us in the workplace? From “icebreakers” to “trust” exercises, offices are still using games and activities to build employee morale, but one thing is clear: a lot of us loathe them. According to a recent Wakefield PR survey for Citrix and Edelman PR, nearly one-third (31%) of office workers say they secretly dislike these “team-building” activities.

The Wakefield study – featured in U.S. News & World Report yesterday – offers insight into why we abhor them so much. It is true that we often meet some of our best friends at the office, but we also meet some very difficult individuals – to put it nicely. Nearly half (49%) of office workers currently work with a “know-it-all,” and 44% work with a “whiner.”

Bosses – it may be time to stop funneling company money into team-building programs that brag of “incredible improvements in employee performance.” Instead of risk-taking games, sponsor a company-wide luncheon or happy hour. Shared meals are one of the five most effective bonding activities for co-workers, according to the article. So, bon appetite to the bottom line!