Project Kick-offs, now with Team Building Facilitation!

November 22, 2015

Your project kick-off events are a perfect time for team building

With the start of another new calendar year fast approaching, it’s a good time to plan your company’s events for January.

One type of event that we see often in that month is the project kick-off. This kind of event is usually held to formally launch a large project or major product or service, likely involving many groups from various departments or locations.

In the case of a product launch, for example, the manufacturer can hold the event to formally introduce the product to its distributors and resellers. In fact, Playworks has been engaged to run team building activities for product launches before and here are some of the reasons why such an event is a perfect time for team building.

The kick-off and the team building have the same goal

The project kick-off is being held to get everyone involved on the same page, to establish a shared goal. For the project or new product to succeed, the various teams have to work together as a larger “meta-team.” Often these different groups don’t know each other well or don’t normally work together regularly.

That’s where team building comes in, which has the objective of establishing positive interactions and even relationships among participants. The intended outcome is that they bring these new relationships to the workplace.

The kick-off is an optimistic, forward-looking affair

Project kick-offs are inherently positive in tone. Project leaders discuss the benefits and importance of the project or product. You can say that they try to “sell” the project or product to those involved.

Team building is also inherently positive and forward-looking. It seeks to bring people together in order to achieve shared success. If the project leaders also participate in the activities, team building can also connect them more strongly with the other people involved in the project. In terms of tone therefore, team building fits in very well with the optimism of a kick-off.

Team building adds purposeful fun

Project kick-offs can get bogged down in the details, especially if the project is large and complex. This can be necessary to clearly define roles and responsibilities. In the case of new products, there are of course discussions on marketing and sales strategies and profiling the target customer. This is the business side of the kick-off.

Incorporating team building alongside these discussions can be a change of pace that adds energy and enthusiasm to the proceedings. When done right, these activities are not just empty entertainment but opportunities to get people into a problem-solving, communicative, and cooperative state of mind. And this is exactly the state of mind you’d want them to be in when your project takes off.