team building trends 2020 2020

Top 5 Trends for Team Building and Development in 2020

Published on 10 Feb 2020 by David Simpson

In this article, you'll discover the top 5 trends in team building and development in 2020.

Our team of industry experts and analysts sits down each year to review past achievements and predict the upcoming trends. Here are our predictions for Team Building and Development Trends in 2020.

Team Building Trends

1. Trend: Intergenerational Team Building

Millennials, generations x, y and z, you name it. For the first time ever, the workforce comprises of five generations, each with different perspectives and work styles.

In 2019, the trend was to adapt team building to different sizes of teams, the focal point of 2020 will be on adapting team building activities to different generations in one team. Intergenerational team building will become a common challenge in team building concentrating on how to connect with each other, to work all together as a team leveraging the strengths and weaknesses of each generation. To address this challenge, team building activities such as FreshBiz and Beat the Box are great because they test various problem-solving skills which each generation handles differently.

Read here about the strengths and weaknesses of different generations in the workplace.

Read here how you can bridge the generational gap in the workplace.

2. Hazard: Forgetting About Ethical Behaviour

According to the Deloitte Global Millennial Survey (2019), climate and environment is a top concern for 29% of the millennial generation and 42% would choose an employer with an environmental or ethical impact over an employer with a higher salary. As millennials will make up three-quarters of the workforce in less than six years, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) becomes more important than ever.

Including CSR in your business model is one thing but including it in your team away day shows you truly care. Your employees will be involved in your corporate ethical behaviour and will highly value making a difference together with their team and with the company. A team building activity like Helping Hands or Toy Factory adds that extra dimension and perspective next to the fun aspect.

3. Trend: Agility

We've registered a high demand for agile team building but what exactly is an agile team? An agile team is an all-round group of people, each person working towards one goal, for instance, to develop a product or service. These people are aligned with each other and fixed to their team so they can fully focus on the product they're dedicated to, like a machine every single component is necessary for it to function.

Hence, agile team building addresses cross-functional teams and the way they work together, to improve their workflow and teamwork, but also how they organise cross-departmental collaboration. This is beneficial for newly formed agile teams as well as for senior agile teams who have certain flaws or needs. Our fast-paced team building activities Quickfire and The Infinite Loop put agility to the test and challenge skills such as cross-functional cooperation, effective communication and managing change.

Learning and Development Trends

1. Trend: Expressing Yourself Through Dialog

We're noticing a huge trend in "unshaming". This is about opening up, not feeling ashamed for it and not being shamed by others, about trusting others and creating a safe space together. People are encouraged to empower each other and to stop suppressing their emotions. Meaningful conversations are therefore foreseen to become a bigger part of team development with a larger amount of time allocated to debriefing and discussing outcomes and challenges faced in the process.

A great and fun way to learn how to open up is through gamification. For example, Speak Up Speak Out is a customisable activity that instils interactive and engaging team discussions applicable to the workplace. Another great discussion tool, Appreciative Inquiry, assesses problem-solving skills through four stages of constructive brainstorming which eventually lead to innovative solutions and action plans.

2. Trend: Resilience

Many people were shocked by the disruptive events of 2019 in Hong Kong and by what's happening now across Asia. No one could have prepared for it and in order for businesses to survive, it all comes down to making calculated decisions and to improve team cohesion to strive to achieve the same company goals. When it becomes more challenging to work with secondary stakeholders such as clients and vendors, take the opportunity to work on strategies and structures to build the business back up.

A more light-hearted alternative inspired by resilience is Escape the Maze, a team building activity where teams learn how to achieve the seemingly impossible.

Read here how Estee Lauder achieved the seemingly impossible with Escape the Maze.

Read here about 12 actions for business leaders to take during turbulent times.

Contact us to learn more about how we can help improve your team’s dynamics in 2020.


David Simpson

Co-Founder & Training Director at Team Building Asia

Challenging people to reach their highest potential through experiential, interactive and fun workshops with a strong and meaningful business outcome.

Interested finding out more about Team Building Asia programs?

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