Tuscany Bike Tour: Outdoor Team Building Activities

Have you ever seen the big boss sweating and being definitively out of his comfort zone during an outdoor team building event like a bike tour of Tuscany or a day trip from Florence? I did, and it was very fun but also an unparalleled learning experience.

Despite the fact that the program of our team building was “secret” I knew that it was an outdoor team building activity and I was really interested to see his behaviors under this unique and funny circumstances.

Yes, when you are a leader, everybody is looking at you. This is an honor but also a huge responsibility. I was keen to see if he would have been capable to adapt to this “crazy” event and continue to be the leader I always admired.

But this outdoor team building activity was an event that – of course – was involving the entire business unit, not just the boss. A lot of people were there, my office-mates as well as other colleagues that – up to that moment -I did not know very well.

A day out of office

Far from the office, immersed in the Tuscany countryside, our look was almost the same: blues jeans and sneakers. I do not know why but I started to perceive my colleagues under a different perspective, looking more at their “human side”. Perhaps – under specific circumstances – we build up (invisible) protective walls to protect ourselves for fear of looking bad.

The execution of this outdoor team building activity was very fun and this enabled us to be more relaxed and open among us. At the same token, this opportunity allowed us to see and appreciate different behaviors that were coming to the surface.

Thanks also to the environment and fun it becomes much easier to overcome certain challenges, we are more inclined to listen and to collaborate.

Observations

I still remember a new hire, very quiet and shy becoming all in a sudden a “lion”, being able to successfully guide his teammates in this “role play” demonstrating leadership traits and negotiation skills never noticed before.

And the boss? He was able to genuinely step back to provide the space for others that were able to lead the team during the exercise better than him. In that occasion, I – like many other colleagues – had another proof of his natural attitude to lead by example and not by the chain of command.

In the days following this outdoor team building activity, colleagues were more inclined to share their ideas and support projects with a much more positive attitude. We all had a strong perception of more collaboration across the board.

A successful team building should really target to take create the conditions to “unlock” the value in relationships and work in this new environment to build trust, collaboration, and an open environment. A new opportunity for people to think together, enhancing perspective and mutual contributions, so that new creative ideas emerge.

Team building is both an art and a science and the leader who can consistently build high-performance teams is worth their weight in gold.

At Tuscany Quintessence we value outdoor team building activity; we can help you to identify the experiences that better matches your need, up to the full planning and execution.

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