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07 March 2008


Oftentimes, a company would send their employees to a "Teambuilding Seminar/Workshop" to promote better camaraderie and working relationships. The problem I see here is that during these so-called team-building activities, the people involved are exposed to a different a environment and different set of challenges than that of their workplace. One might even take it for granted that the said "workshop" was attended to build bridges between officemates. It might be mistaken for a simple office outing. And yes, while there -- in a resort or a hotel where this activity is being held -- the people may let ther guards down and get to know one another, maybe even find friends in people they have always worked with but never really got to know. But... when they go back to the office, would they really apply the concepts that were taught to them? Would working relationships really improve?

My take on this is... I admire employers for wanting to give bonding time to their employees but let's face it, by the end of the seminar/workshop, the real personality of each individual will always be the critical factor whether he or she would be able to work well with his or her co-employees. There really is no short cuts in building relationships whether they be personal or professional. I commend people who are able to learn and imbibe the teachings they are inculcated during these said activities but the other percentage of employees who would still go back to their old ways and not really care about their co-workers are not stupid or bad people either. Maybe they just prefer to build relationships over long periods of time (I mean, eventually if your co-worker proves to be a team-player then it really is quite hard not to like that person). Maybe these people are just careful of who they want to trust (TRUST is quite a big word and it shouldn't be demanded of people... it is earned). All I'm saying is "different folks, different strokes". One should not impose his or her opinion on someone else just because he or she thinks it is the right one. Building a team cannot be done overnight. It takes time and patience for people of different upbringing and personalities to be able to work in unison. There really shouldn't be a time frame, but when this group learns to walk in one direction, you'll know.

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