Leadership Development: Corporate Team Building Games

Team building games have the perception of being centered around a fun day out for your team, but this blog post will have a different focus on corporate team building games: why escape rooms help you as a leader, not just your employees. 

The point of this post is to help you understand why I, as a leader, use escape rooms to foster a healthy work environment, and how I apply the knowledge gained by watching my employees work through escape rooms. 


Happy Employees Produce Happy Customers

As I sit down and think through why I put employees through an escape room team building exercise, I am reminded that happy employees produce happy customers. It really is a snowball effect. Employees who enjoy their job and their work environment, tend to work harder. They get more work done, they strive to be better at their jobs, and they work towards creating a better customer experience.

I am constantly evaluating if my employees are enjoying their jobs. Sometimes, I don’t like the answer to the question. Sometimes my team struggles. Even recently, the added pressure of sanitizing and cleaning to protect them and customers from a virus has added a new level of stress that was unexpected. Evaluating these things, however, allow me to grow as a leader, and in turn, help my employees grow both professionally and personally.

As leaders, it is natural for us to want to foster a healthy work environment for our employees. We want our employees to be happy. We want them to enjoy their jobs. We want them to go home at the end of the day feeling satisfied with their work, the people they interacted with, and the problems they solved. The more my employees enjoy their job, the less likely they are to quit. I don’t want my employees to stay with our company because it is convenient or the easy thing to do. I want them to stay because they love what they do. I want them to be excited to come into work.

Why Corporate Team Building Games

I believe the question still stands however, how do we actually do this? I personally believe that it starts with getting to know our employees through team leadership development. Their likes and dislikes. Learning what they are passionate about. Seeing their strengths and weaknesses in action. This is the key phrase, “in action”. The reality is we may not always see every facet of a person in the office, making it difficult to provide them with what they need to be successful. As leaders in our organizations, we want to see our employees thrive and grow, because that is often a strong factor in employee retention. It is a well-known fact that constantly training and hiring new employees cost companies a lot of time and money. Getting out of the cycle of employees quitting, and starting to enjoy their job, begins with fostering a healthy and enjoyable work environment.  

This is why I love escape rooms. Escape rooms provide an interesting opportunity to evaluate people without being in a room with them, allowing us to see more of their personalities. One thing we have noticed is that employees forget that their boss is watching the cameras behind the scenes, so their real personalities start to show. It provides a unique way to evaluate strengths and weaknesses. It helps you answer those unanswered questions. Using escape rooms to evaluate new employees has worked so well that we made it part of our training process. We have new employees play escape rooms, and then use it as an opportunity to take notes, evaluate areas that need growth, and assess their strengths. This has allowed us to give them projects that we know they will enjoy. It has given me more information on helping them grow personally and professionally. 

Did I notice that my employee gets frustrated working on a task without seeing results? How can I help them work on patience? I will first start by teaching them how to set goals and write lists, allowing them to physically see progress. 

Did my employee shut down when their idea was tossed out the window by the rest of the team? I first will help my team see the value in everyone’s ideas by making sure that I personally see the value in every idea. I will then allow that to trickle down to them. Employees often follow the actions of their leader.

Developing well-rounded employees takes time, attention, and hard work. You have to get to know them. Figure out the things they are passionate about. Find the things they don’t enjoy doing. Work towards giving each employee what they need to thrive at your company. Find the cracks and repair them. Manage expectations and help your employees work towards growth. 

I personally recommend escape rooms for team leadership training. It may seem out of the ordinary. But maybe, that’s just what you need.