by Michael Holland    

Work teams are living, breathing organisms and like humans they grow up through time.  Well, at least most teams grow up through normal plateaus.  We love working with teams as they form together during the toddler phase because the team is just so much fun.  Open to learning, inquisitive, seeking to get to know each other.  The toddler team will try out new behaviors and openly accept new members.

Teenager teams are a bit different.  While we are very gifted in guiding the teenager teams we don’t necessarily love them as much.  These teams are rebellious; team members know it all, have seen it all and constantly roll their eyes.  They are in an awkward stage of feeling self-sufficient yet not quite mature.  Team members form small cliques blocking open communication and ostracizing those individuals who don’t quite fit.

Have you ever had the opportunity to see how a group of teenagers react when suddenly presented with a group of toddlers?  Amazingly the mood opens up, smiles appear, voices change, patience is readily available, teaching moments prevail.  The kids break down the barriers and the bigger kids – those teenagers – start to have some real, honest to good fun

Is your team in that awkward teenager stage?  Spice it up with a group of rookies.  Or at least go visit a day care facility or a kindergarten class for some team building and bonding.