Learn more about upcoming opportunities to see our programs live

Teamwork in the Workplace: Enthusiastic, Consistent, and United Effort



When people think about what makes a great team great, they often gloss over “effort.” After all, it seems a bit obvious to say that a team can only succeed by putting in hard work.

But for teamwork in the workplace to be truly effective, the definition of team effort must extend beyond “working hard.” Effective effort involves three key components: enthusiasm, consistency, and a united commitment. In fact, consistent, united, and enthusiastic effort is so important to team success that we’ve named it one of our “seven cornerstones of teamwork,” which make up the foundation for exceptional teamwork in the workplace. Read on to see which component of effort your team might be missing:


Armed with shiny, new resources (or budgets) and a well-defined goal, teams often start off incredibly excited to tackle the task at hand. That excitement, however, comes in waves—morale is high at the launch of the project and gets another boost at the completion of big phases, but it dissipates between these peaks when the hard work must be put in. Unfortunately, that’s when teams need an injection of enthusiasm the most!

Teamwork in the workplace suffers and slows when members are not enthusiastic and fully engaged; a study by Gallup revealed that engaged workplaces outperform their peers by 147 percent in earnings per share. If you look around and see that your team members are putting in the work, but your project still seems to be moving at a glacial pace, a lack of enthusiastic effort may be to blame.


It’s an all-too-common scenario: A team member shuffles into a meeting 15 minutes after it starts, offering a half-baked excuse. It’s one thing if this were a one-time experience, but it happens again for the next meeting…and again after that. This team member needs a major reminder that the effort he or she contributes must be consistent (and that doesn’t mean being “consistently” late!). That means being there for every meeting on time, answering team emails in a timely manner, and not making excuses when the going gets tough.


While team members must be consistent in a practical sense, they must be emotionally consistent in their effort, as well. For example, a lack of consistent emotional effort may manifest itself in a team member’s tendency to pull out his or her phone during Friday-morning meetings—she’s physically at the meeting, but, mentally, she’s totally “checked out.” It’s not enough to just show up consistently; for teamwork in the workplace to succeed, each team member must consistently give the project his or her all.


Today, many smart companies are changing up teamwork in the workplace by instituting subgroups, which are smaller “teams within teams” strategically formed in order to focus on a specific subset of the overall team’s goal. Sometimes, unfortunately, forming subgroups can have an adverse effect on team effort. Subgroup members may become jealous that they’re not on a more “glamorous” or client-facing subgroup, or they may slack off on subgroup tasks, because they don’t see how their subgroup is important.


That’s where the importance of a united effort comes in. Subgroup members must remember that every subgroup performs an indispensable function to teamwork in the workplace—therefore, each and every subgroup needs to be united in its effort to reach the overall team goal. On an individual level, a united effort is so important to team success because team members naturally rely on one another, like for a report that can’t be written until the data are collected by a certain team member. When one team member slacks off, that will inevitably affect another team member’s ability to contribute to his or her team fully.

Set the Expectation Early

Putting in consistent, united, enthusiastic effort should be a given for every employee—but, unfortunately, that’s not always the case. That’s why team leaders must be up front about the level of personal commitment and discipline that will be expected of each member. If a prospective team member is not willing or is unable to commit to this kind of effort, then allow him or her to bow out of the team. It may be hard to find a replacement, but it would be even harder to get through a project with team members who must be cajoled at every turn into putting in effort. Although, at a company with a high-performance culture, once the expectation for consistent, united, and enthusiastic effort is set, the chances of high-performing members “bailing” on the team are minimal.

If a lack of effort may be the culprit in your own company’s teams, which specific component do you think your teams are struggling with the most?

Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

7 Ways to Improve Teamwork in the Workplace



Off the top of your head, you can probably think of at least a few ways that teamwork in your workplace has fallen short. The team may have missed a deadline or failed to meet a set objective. Regardless of what happened, when these incidents happen it is a usually a sign that teamwork and collaboration are not functioning properly. Even when a team’s efforts lead to seemingly good results, there are often plenty of missed opportunities because of issues such as:

  • Not every voice on the team was heard.
  • Communication roadblocks prevented good ideas from coming to fruition.
  • Subgroups went in a direction that didn’t support the team’s objective.
  • The team fizzled because there wasn’t a consistent and united effort.

If any of these issues sound familiar, it might be time to take steps to improve teamwork. Effective teamwork doesn’t happen overnight. It takes intentional effort and a thorough understanding of what teamwork actually is.

Below are seven cornerstones to improve teamwork in your organization, along with links to resources that will help you learn more.

1. Understand the Importance of Leadership

Every team needs a leader to encourage accountability, model empowerment, facilitate streamlined decision-making, and maintain momentum. However, the appropriate team leader isn’t always the person you first expect. Team leaders are typically individuals who know the most about the project—which means they might not have extensive experience with leading. They might not even be the person with the most ‘senior’ rank in the room. That’s why building in leadership skills exercises into your teamwork training in the workplace is so important.

The role of a team leader extends beyond conducting everyday meetings and capturing action items. The person in a leadership role must recognize their importance, model the expected behaviors, and understand how to harness individual strengths to achieve the outlined objectives.

2. Create Unanimous Focus on a Common Goal

When teams get distracted and stray away from the defined objectives, the project will take longer, or worse, never be fully achieved. Even when teams are working on a simple project, team members still need to see it as their own project. But for that project to truly be the best it can be, each person on the team must have a unanimous focus on a common goal.

It’s not uncommon for the individuals in a team to be pulled in multiple directions. They have daily tasks that must be completed, long-term projects to move along, and departmental objectives to bear in mind. Clearly articulating and repeating the team’s common goal can help the group maintain focus, especially between meetings.

3. Clearly Define Roles in Subgroups

When a team is faced with a large goal, it’s best practice to create smaller teams, or subgroups, within the project to address more specific tasks that support the overall goal. The goal of a subgroup is also more tightly focused than the overall team goal. This means less input from higher-ranking members who are most enthusiastic about the ‘big picture’. Instead, subgroup members with specialized knowledge will steer the subgroup towards its goal.

Subgroups should operate as mini-teams, using all seven of these cornerstones in their own work. Each subgroup needs its own leader, a unanimous focus on a common goal, and so on. They must also be subordinate to the larger team, always supporting the larger goal.

4. Tap into Your Shared Resources

Many people only consider hard resources—money,  equipment, technology, and so on—when thinking about the resources that are shared among a team. However, soft resources can be just as important when cataloging your inventory of shared resources. While they might not seem like elements that must be shared for team success, but think about what would happen if just one person was passionate about the team project, or if only one person ever tried to overcome the inevitable project hurdles that sprung up. Just as when hard resources aren’t spread around equitably, it’s unlikely that project would ever be completed.

In a work environment where budgets are closely followed and individual productivity is valued, it can be culturally challenging to effectively share resources, both hard and soft. Organizations that are committed to improving teamwork must make it clear that team members have access to the resources they need in order to accomplish their goals.

5. Use Frequent and Effective Communication

Every individual on a team must always be able to say, “I know what I need to know,” and, “I understand everything.” If these two statements are not true at any given time, there is potential for the team to break down. The keys to communication in a team are for it to be both frequent and effective. And remember that effective communication requires all team members to know on a high level what’s going on within the team, but also to truly comprehend what’s going on.

Effective communication in a team requires both the right skills and the right tools. Ongoing training can help build the necessary skills to improve teamwork, such as active listening, giving feedback, and creating an environment in which people are comfortable speaking up. The right tools will depend on the team, but could include a document management system, an internal messaging platform, or a system for sharing and storing meeting notes.

6. Offer Enthusiastic, Consistent, and United Effort

The whole point of creating a team is to accomplish a specific goal. This requires effort on everyone’s part, but unless that effort meets certain criteria, you’ll soon find yourself spinning wheels. Putting in consistent, united, enthusiastic effort should be a given for every employee—but, unfortunately, that’s not always the case. That’s why team leaders must be up front about the level of personal commitment and discipline that will be expected of each member.

In addition to articulating the need for this type of effort, team leaders must also model the desired behavior. If team members see that their leader isn’t accountable for his or her commitments or makes excuses for substandard work, they will eventually conclude that this is acceptable behavior and reflect their leader’s level of effort.

7. Employ Periodic and Temporary Suppression of the Ego

Essentially, the principle of teamwork related to ego is about ensuring that individual agendas don’t take over the team’s goals, inhibit other team members’ contribution, or development and create a cycle of diminishing team effectiveness. No team will succeed if it is composed of members with a “me first” attitude. Successful teamwork depends on every individual feeling that their contribution matters.

Keeping egos in check without quashing them requires a delicate balance. Everybody on the team must intentionally manage their ego and shift the focus from individual agendas to the team’s objectives to effectively achieve the desired outcome.

Next Steps to Improving Teamwork in the Workplace

While the teams in your organization might have mastered some elements of this list, it is important to understand that in order to improve teamwork in the workplace it cannot be done alone. So, if you are committed to creating a workplace where teamwork thrives, start by performing an assessment of to determine which areas could improve. You will inevitably find a few gaps. When you do, provide competency development to bring all seven cornerstones into balance and see how the organizations in your team transform.

Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

4 Tips for Planning a Successful Corporate Event

Obvious news flash: Many decisions go into planning a corporate event, from finding the right location and determining menu selections to agenda constraints and giveaways or no giveaways. You even need to consider lighting. Before you can plan the details of your event, take time to brainstorm what will truly make it successful. These four tips will help you plan an event that’s memorable, informative, and dare I say, fun.

1. Determine the Goals of Your Corporate Event First

Educate, inform, drive behavior change, introduce, celebrate, or improve skills—these are all potential goals. Whatever you choose will drive the rest of your event planning, from your budget and venue choice to content and approach. Ensure the goal is strategically aligned with the company’s overall business goals, which will improve the chances that your executives are more eager to buy into your plans. Determining goals first also allows you and your team to clarify a plan of action for measuring event ROI, something else near and dear to the executives.

2. Incorporate a Fun, Relevant Theme

Pick a fun theme to excite and engage your participants throughout the event. You can even get them involved beforehand by asking them to  brainstorm ways they can come to the event fully immersed in the theme—outfits, bringing theme-related items, viewing related videos prior, or team-related pre-work. Themes don’t just present an opportunity to amp up excitement; they can also be used to make your corporate event feel more cohesive, especially if it spans multiple days. Weave elements of your theme throughout different activities to connect the dots for participants.

When you do decide to incorporate a theme into the event, make sure you pay close attention to the details. A half-hearted attempt at carrying out a theme may deflate participants more than it pumps them up, whereas a carefully considered and well-executed one sends the message that your company has invested time and energy into creating this event—and participants are expected to do the same.

3. Keep Participants Engaged with Immersive Activities

If one of the goals of your event is to teach participants new skills, explore training approaches that require active participation. Getting your participants out of their chairs and interacting with one another creates excitement throughout the event. Plus, participatory learning is often more effective in the long term for retention. When participants learn by doing, that knowledge stays with them much longer in comparison to passive learning strategies. We have all been there before and know it’s far easier for participants to “clock out” on a lecture or PowerPoint presentation than it is with an engaged a hands-on learning activity.

If you’re thinking about including immersive training activities at your event, be sure to consider experiential learning. In an experiential learning exercise, participants are tasked with working together to tackle a fun but challenging “project” and the skills needed to successfully complete the challenge are the same ones needed to succeed at work. One of the biggest benefits is that it teaches participants new skills and allows them to practice them during the same exercise. Allowing participants to practice in a conference setting, wherein they’re able to get immediate feedback from facilitators, gives them a chance to refine and perfect those skills before they use them on the job. Plus, experiential learning is a good fit for all types of learners, thereby making it ideal for events put on for a diverse workforce.

4. Invest in Retention Tools and Strategies

No corporate event should be a “one-and-done” affair. If it focuses on teaching participants new skills and information, make sure you have a plan in place to help participants remember the lessons learned. Some post-event retention tools may include:

  • Online videos or webinars that serve as refreshers on event training
  • Interactive online games that test participants’ knowledge and retention of key concepts
  • Group discussions that explore the challenges and solutions addressed during the event
  • Forums on which participants can post follow-up questions and discussions

Keeping retention in mind throughout the planning process also helps you design components that support long-lasting learning.

If you planned a particularly well-received corporate event before, let us know what elements you think contributed to its success.

Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

4 Essential Keys to Understanding Your Company's Culture

You’ve heard about the importance of company culture and how it can both attract new employees while keeping current ones engaged. However, you might still be wondering what exactly makes up company culture, why is it important, and does my own company even have a defined culture?

Company culture may seem like a vague and elusive concept, yet there are several ways to define it. Here are four keys to understanding your organization’s culture and the necessary criteria to determine whether yours may need to evolve.

Key 1: Recognize That You Do Have Company Culture

Every organization has company culture, whether intentionally cultivated or not. In short, it refers to the combination of values, goals, ethics, and expectations that govern and influence employee behaviors. If negative behaviors have been left to develop unchecked, with no guidance or direction, then yes, a company culture that supports bad habits may have taken root.

Simply put: There’s no blank slate when it comes to company culture. If you’re envisioning a specific kind—for instance, a customer-centric one—it’s not enough to simply announce that vision. You must first figure out what (and how) current behaviors need to shift in order to develop a roadmap to achieve those changes. That’s why it’s so important to define your current company culture before you try to steer it in a new direction.

Key 2: Analyze Your Company’s Priorities

If you want to better understand your culture, look at your company’s priorities. These goals and initiatives reveal what your organization values and what it does not (both explicitly and implicitly). Questions to ask yourself about company priorities may include:

  • Do your employees hear more about increasing the bottom line or increasing customer satisfaction?
  • Does your company give employees the freedom to experiment and innovate when it comes to solving problems, or is following protocol more important?
  • Is taking calculated risks seen as a distraction or opportunity?
  • How much (or how little) does your company invest in ongoing training efforts, both in terms of money and time?
  • When your company considers adopting certain efforts or changes, are the thoughts and feelings of both leadership and employees considered?

Exploring questions like this can give you clues as to what kind of culture your company has cultivated. Is it one with a workforce that’s empowered, engaged, and encouraged to innovate and improve? Or a culture where the bottom line is often prioritized? If your company’s priorities give you pause, it may be time to explore a culture transformation.

Key 3: Inquire About Company Culture

Your company culture is made up of behaviors, those that are encouraged, permitted, and hindered. To understand what kind makes up your organization, it’s best to go directly to the source: your employees.

Consider ways to get feedback on which behaviors currently serve the company well and which need to be discouraged or changed to elevate your organization. Gather feedback from all levels of employees, from executives to front-line managers. Surveys, company-wide assessments, and focus groups can all help create a clearer picture of the behaviors that define your current company culture. Again, the key is to engage every employee as you ask for feedback because the sum total of all employee contributions and behaviors are what make up your culture.

Key 4: Look to Your Leaders

While every employee contributes to company culture, leaders have more impact and influence. Examine the messages your leadership team puts forth, and whether action follows those words. Leadership may espouse values and a mission that excites employees, but if leadership itself doesn’t “walk the walk,” their behavior can contribute to a culture of distrust and disengagement. Culture starts from the top down, and your leadership sets the tone for what’s permissible and encouraged in your company and what’s not.

After examining your culture using the four keys listed, where do you think your company culture needs a tune-up—or is a complete culture transformation in order?

4 Essential Keys to Understanding Your Company's Culture.jpg


Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

5 Benefits of Experiential Training in the Workplace

Employee development is a high priority for many organizations because it helps increase engagement, build loyalty, and achieve organizational goals. The types of training available to companies as part of an employee development strategy are countless, from self-directed online courses to immersive multi-day experiences. Using multiple training approaches helps ensure that you reach all types of learners and allows you to maximize your training budget.

Including experiential learning in your development program offers several important benefits, such as:

  • Driving conviction to change behaviors
  • Connecting conceptual ideas to actual situations in the workplace
  • Delivering a fun and engaging training experience for employees
  • Producing measurable results and the ability to track progress
  • Providing a training framework that can be used in multiple areas

Let’s dig deeper into each of these benefits so you can see how experiential training can support your professional development strategy.

Drives Conviction

The main objective of any training initiative is to change behaviors in order to achieve a specific outcome. If participants are not aware of that outcome or not invested in accomplishing it, they are less likely to change their behaviors.

Experiential learning starts by building conviction so that participants learn not only how to do something in a new way, but also why it matters. They see the positive effects of using their new skills in the training environment and become motivated to test them in the real world because they have both the confidence that it will make a difference and the conviction to make the effort that will lead to change.

Connects Concepts to the Workplace

Many training formats effectively teach new concepts, but do not provide a safe environment to practice applying those concepts. For example, a classroom-based lecture about leadership skills can enhance the knowledge of participants, but that doesn’t mean they will know how to apply new skills in the real world.

Experiential learning is different because participants not only learn new concepts and skills, they also have the opportunity to try them in a scenario that indirectly mimics their reality. Because the scenarios are metaphors, many people don’t realize they are learning new work skills until the debrief at the end of the training. At this point, a facilitator guides a discussion that prompts participants to make strong connections between the lessons they learned in the activity and similar scenarios on the job.

Participants Have Fun

Employee development is serious business, but that doesn’t mean training has to be dry or boring. The importance of engaging participants during training cannot be understated. If they are not paying attention, they simply will not learn what you need them to.

Experiential learning fully immerses participants, making the full length of training fun and engaging. They aren’t interested in checking their phones because they want to solve the next challenge or see if they can improve their team’s results in the next round. Being fully engaged means that participants are more likely to absorb the information being presented to them, and because they are doing something that has immediate consequences, the experience is much more meaningful.

Provides Measurable Results

Training ROI is a high priority for anybody working with an employee development budget. Collecting feedback surveys or testing participants after a seminar is one way to gauge training results, but these methods do not guarantee long-term behavior change.

Experiential learning provides some of the best results of any type of training program because participants retain more information when they learn by doing. The learning decay curve shows that most people forget up to 70 percent of what they learned within the first week of learning it. Experiential learning, especially when combined with a retention strategy, helps overcome learning decay by instilling conviction, connecting the training concepts to actual behaviors in the workplace, and giving participants a common experience to reference.

Can Be Applied across a Wide Variety of Topics

Some training methods are better than others for certain topics or types of learners. For example, learning new software should include hands-on training. Similarly, digital training platforms are not always effective for people who are not comfortable using new technology without assistance.

Experiential learning can be used to teach to a broad spectrum of skills and competencies. Whether you want to teach time management to every employee or leadership skills to rising stars, experiential learning will produce results. Participants of every age and experience level benefit from this type of training. Programs can be customized to your organization, and even specific teams, so that they incorporate the company culture and internal language that will resonate with participants.

Next Steps: Adding Experiential Training to Your Development Initiatives

Experiential training has quickly become a favorite among HR and training professionals, as well as employees, because it creates conviction, connects the training experience to the real world, and delivers measurable results. Not to mention it’s fun and engaging, and can used to train a variety of topics, including leadership, customer centricity, and sales effectiveness. As you design your employee development initiatives, incorporate multiple types of learning methodologies, and be sure to include experiential training.


Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

The Link Between Employee Engagement And Staff Retention

It’s of the utmost importance that we recognize how employee engagement and staff retention are connected. When employees are not engaged at work, they have little incentive to stay. Even pay increases often cannot keep an employee who is not engaged, especially if they don’t see a promising future that includes satisfying work and a clear development path.

Given this, it’s not surprising that an SHRM/Globoforce Employee Recognition Survey indicated that the top three workforce challenges for HR professionals are retention, engagement, and recruitment. Rather than dealing with the symptoms—turnover and recruitment issues—getting to the root of the problem leads to long-term solutions. Focusing on engagement can help reduce turnover, which also alleviates recruitment issues because there are fewer empty positions to fill.

Why Is Retention Important?

One of the most motivating reasons for businesses to improve retention is the fact that it’s expensive. The cost of turnover includes lost productivity, lost profits, recruitment, training, and more. A Deloitte report found that the average cost to replace an employee is around $7,000. For large organizations with high turnover, this can quickly add up. While this number might seem reasonable, the more shocking number that is less easy to see in a financial report is the cost of lost productivity, which is estimated around $120,000 per employee. Even the loss of one employee can have an impact on the bottom line.

Another reason to focus on retaining valuable employees is the company culture. High-turnover companies have a hard time building the culture they want because there are fewer long-term employees to demonstrate the ideal behaviors. Additionally, when employees see that others frequently leave the organization, it sets a negative tone and prompts them to question why they are staying.

How Engagement Impacts Retention

Gallup’s State of the American Workplace report captures the link between engagement and retention in a nutshell:

“Employees who are engaged are more likely to stay with their organization, reducing overall turnover and the costs associated with it. They feel a stronger bond to their organization’s mission and purpose, making them more effective brand ambassadors. They build stronger relationships with customers, helping their company increase sales and profitability.”

The same report found that only one-third of workers are engaged, which should be a red flag for most organizations. If you’re not confident that the majority of your employees are engaged, this could lead to a costly turnover rate.

How to Improve Employee Engagement

Improving engagement is possible, but it requires a sustained effort. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution that will immediately shift mindsets, organizations should focus on the following three components to improve employee engagement:


Publicly recognize employees for a job well done. When leaders demonstrate that they value an employee’s contribution, it fosters further engagement. Employees also want to stay at a company where they feel valued and appreciated. You can do this by creating a rewards program, hosting monthly or quarterly dinners where employees are recognized for their contributions, or simply thanking your team at the next staff meeting.


Create a culture that encourages, supports, and motivates employees to do their best work. Whether you do this by allowing dogs in the office, having a company-wide ping-pong tournament, or having quarterly team meetings, your culture should remind people why they want to be there. So, while the elements that make up your culture will be as unique as your organization, determining the desired culture will be the responsibility of leadership.


Employees today value education and learning opportunities. They also want to know what opportunities lie ahead. Create clear growth paths and provide the resources that will help people achieve their development goals to keep them engaged as they progress in their careers. This requires more than a single annual review and should include coaching and mentoring to help employees reach their personal career goals.


Retention is a real issue that should be addressed, especially if you already have high turnover rates. Increasing employee engagement can help improve retention and also provide the benefits of better productivity and greater employee satisfaction. Focus on your company culture and take proactive steps to improve engagement, especially among your top talent.


Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

4 Ways to Measure the Impact of Corporate Team Building

Team building activities have been shown to improve overall workplace performance by increasing productivity, improving communication patterns, and encouraging creativity and innovation. But measuring your progress toward these overhead objectives can be challenging if you don’t know where to look or what metrics to focus on.

Measuring the return on your corporate team building investment is not as elusive as you might imagine, especially if you plan ahead and set clear goals. Some impacts can be observed, while others can be objectively measured. Our list includes both evaluation methods to help you gain a more complete picture of how team building initiatives are impacting your business.

1. Establish a Baseline of Comparison and Identify Long-Term Goals

It’s much easier to measure the success of your team building event if you establish a baseline for comparison and defined key objectives early in the planning process. Recording certain metrics prior to hosting your event will help you establish a benchmark and identify areas for improvement. Indicators such as absentee rates, retention rates, productivity rates, and customer satisfaction rates are all good metrics to consider measuring against.

In addition to collecting performance and productivity data, observe how your team operates on a daily basis and take note of internal dynamics and behavioral patterns. Do meetings drag on too long because people aren’t aligned on key issues? Do only a few employees contribute to group discussions? Have miscommunications resulted in inefficiencies or mistakes?

Identify areas where your team is struggling and decide how you will define improvement in those specific areas. Measuring against this definition using your baseline metrics and observations will help you gain a clear picture of your progress.


2. Know What a Successful Team Looks Like

Although this may sound abstract, studies have shown that successful and productive teams share certain social characteristics. In a Harvard Business Review study, researchers were able to accurately predict what team would win a business competition based on learned social characteristics alone—regardless of the quality or strength of their pitch.

Of course, some people are naturally more charismatic or communicative than others, but research shows that group dynamic—specifically group communication—is as important to a company’s success as the innate skills of individual contributors. Unlike our more hard-wired qualities, effective communication skills can be nurtured through team building activities that aim to establish trust and respect. Furthermore, team building events encourage individuals to forge personal connections that engender more engaged and cohesive group dynamics.

Clearly, communication is king. But what does effective communication look like in a professional, group setting?

The most successful teams exhibit these qualities:

  • Everyone in the group speaks and listens roughly the same amount.
  • Contributions are clear, succinct, and energetic.
  • Communication is multi-directional and not just between leaders and subordinates.
  • People demonstrate engaged body language, such as facing one another and using active listening and speaking gestures.
  • Members actively brainstorm in small groups and bring ideas back to the larger team.
  • Team members make an effort to collaborate face to face whenever possible rather than using technology.

Knowing how a successful team operates will help you determine if your employees are trending in the right direction and will allow you to identify areas to target in your next team building event.

3. Ask for Feedback

This is perhaps the most obvious evaluation method and the most widely overlooked. If you’re not sure where your team stands, it never hurts to ask. Sending out anonymous surveys using apps like TINYpulse or SurveyMonkey can help you gauge how your team feels and measure the impact of team building events.

Ask questions about workplace communication, group dynamics, productivity, creativity, job satisfaction, and office environment before and after your event. This can not only help you identify which areas need immediate focus, but also help you track your progress and identify opportunities for growth. To understand the long-term impact of your team building initiatives, make sure to ask for feedback at regular intervals rather than limiting responses to a one-time questionnaire.

Along with asking for more general feedback, don’t be afraid to ask employees about the team building event itself. Encouraging them to reflect on the event and discuss how team building lessons or skills might be applied to their job will boost engagement and content retention. In addition, this feedback can promote buy-in for future events by ensuring that their thoughts are heard.

4. Look at Your Bottom Line

Companies that invest in team building activities typically have higher employee retention rates and are more cohesive, innovative, and efficient—all qualities that directly impact their bottom line.

For example, when employees stay with a company longer, recruiting, hiring, and employee onboarding costs decrease. If teams are more effective, efficient, and innovative, then customer satisfaction and retention rates should improve, driving sustainable revenue growth. If your employees are happy and feel valued, you’ll not only attract the best talent, but also retain them—helping expand your brand’s influence.

These impacts may not be immediately evident, but team building should be thought of as a long-term investment in your company’s health. The behaviors and thought processes that you nurture today will lead to greater success and savings down the road.

The Takeaway

For the best results, make a commitment to incorporating team building events into your annual calendar and optimize as you go. Take stock of what worked and what didn’t after each event and identify areas to improve upon in the future. Don’t be afraid to seek out professional guidance to help you make the most out of your event budget, determine what activities are most likely to accomplish your goals, and execute the most engaging and compelling team building experience possible.


Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

The Key Players You Need for a Successful Event Planning Team

Successful corporate event planning takes more than just a great agenda and a high-quality venue. Preparation and multiple people in varying roles must all participate in order to deliver an executive-worthy event. Key stakeholders must be involved throughout the process; support staff must have clear directions, and the point person running it all must work closely with the entire team to bring it all together.

Here are the must-have players on any corporate event planning team:


Depending on the scope of the event and the size of the organization, there will most likely be one or more executives involved in laying the groundwork. It is important to understand what their thoughts are on the business goals associated with the event, the budget, the agenda, and so on. Some of the responsibilities that executive decision-makers have during planning are:

  • Determining the overall budget for the event
  • Determining the business objectives, theme, and tone of the event
  • Vetting the speakers and activities
  • Approving major expenditures
  • Participating in development of the agenda
  • Making crucial decisions throughout the planning process
  • Not only participating in and championing the event itself but also the activities pre and post to set the tone

Keeping these key team members informed throughout the planning process makes it easier to achieve fast decision-making and allows corporate event planners to quickly get buy-in on new ideas.

Learning and Development/Human Resources

If the event includes a learning element, the appropriate people in the organization must be involved. Having these team members involved will ensure your event is aligned properly with existing initiatives and will make the most effective impact on key stakeholders. Some of the responsibilities of this role are:

  • Recommending training content for the event
  • Developing a curriculum if necessary
  • Sourcing a partner to deliver training content
  • Ensuring that learning events are in line with the organization’s objectives and strategy

Learning and development professionals can offer unique insights into corporate event planning that other team members might not have. If this role doesn’t exist in the organization, it could be filled by an HR professional or the event planner themselves.

Event Planning Staff

Nobody has unlimited time in the day, and a corporate event planner cannot be in two places at the same time. Having support staff available is essential for a successful event. Remember that when assigning the following tasks, it is your responsibility to work with team members to create individual project deadlines so that you can manage the timeline and optimally use your available resources. These team members are responsible for tasks such as:

  • Ensuring presentation technology is functioning
  • Working with venue staff to provide food and other amenities
  • Registering event participants
  • Coordinating lodging and transportation for participants and presenters
  • Preparing information packets and setup/takedown of the event materials

You can’t have a successful corporate event without participants. The more engaged they are before, during, and after the event, the higher the chance of success for all involved stakeholders. Bear this in mind as you plan the agenda and schedule learning events. Incorporate a variety of sessions to keep people engaged and consider one or more experiential events. Start engaging attendees in the days and weeks before the event to generate excitement and maintain the momentum you’ve built by investing time into planning a reinforcement and measurement strategy for after the event concludes.

Corporate event planning is no small task. Even a single-day company event can take months of careful planning and a tight-knit team to successfully execute. Form your team early to ensure faster decision-making and greater buy-in from all the key stakeholders throughout the process.


Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

How to Tailor Workplace Training to All Types of Learning Styles

Every individual is unique, and everyone brings with them a unique set of traits to the workplace—from their personality and past experiences to the way they learn. In fact, there are several types of learning styles and ways that workplace training can be designed to meet those diverse learning needs, as well as decrease learning decay. While some individuals learn best with written material, others are make sense of new information when they can see or hear an explanation of what is being taught.

In order to ensure that employees get the most out of their training experiences, it’s best to tailor workplace training to address the needs of all types of learning styles as much as possible. By making small adjustments to existing training or larger changes to your training programs, you can position your organization to achieve strong training ROI, improved employee engagement, and sustained behavior change.

How to Tailor Training to the Various Types of Learning Styles

Though there are many learning theories, we’ll focus on one of the most popular, Howard Gardner’s Seven Learning Styles. There are a number of elements that can be included in workplace training so that it appeals and connects to each learning style, helping individuals learn new behaviors that will help improve performance and job effectiveness.

Here are some ways your training initiatives can be designed to appeal to the various learning styles:

Visual Learners

Visual learners learn by what they see and build comprehension of new concepts through pictures, images, and the spatial relationships of objects. Workplace training for visual learners can be tailored to include presentations with plentiful diagrams, videos, and charts.

Auditory Learners

Auditory learners are excellent listeners and discern patterns in spoken, lecture-type teaching. This type of learner prefers speeches, audio recordings, and training that includes plenty of opportunities for dialogue.

Reading/Writing Learners

These individuals learn best through close examination of text, reports, stories, and case studies. Workplace training for reading/writing learners can be tailored to include manuals, handouts, quizzes, and presentations.

Kinesthetic Learners

Kinesthetic learners expand their comprehension of new information through their senses, and enjoy hands-on activities like simulations, walk-throughs, and sessions that include building or working with physical objects.

Logical Learners

Sometimes referred to as mathematical learners, these individuals learn from studying whole systems, patterns, and high-level concepts. They are particularly drawn to spreadsheets, multi-step methodologies, and graphs. Logical learners respond well to workplace training that includes opportunities to distill multiple concepts into one big idea, showing them how to improve their behavior.

Interactive/Social Learners

These learners are strong at understanding the feelings and motivations of others. The thrive on team learning activities, role-playing, and group discussions.

Solitary Learners

Solitary learners focus on self-reflection and introspection as their prime way of synthesizing and making sense of learning. Training for these learners should be tailored to include opportunities to work through the content at their own pace, as well as a balance of collaborative activities with those that allow them to work independently.

Experiential Learning Works for a Range of Learning Styles

Experiential learning can be an appealing workplace training choice because it addresses the different learning needs of employees. Here are some examples of how experiential learning works with many types of learning styles:

  • For visual learners – The immersive nature of experiential learning features stories with vivid details that allow these types of learners to visualize desired behaviors introduced to them in training.
  • For auditory learners – The discussion and dialogue inherent in experiential learning allow auditory learners to learn by hearing how others synthesize and apply newly learned behaviors.
  • For reading/writing learners – Reading/writing learners thrive on making connections through what they read, and experiential learning addresses this by offering discovery-based learning that compels learners to create order out of the information presented, then take action based on their understanding of the material.
  • For kinesthetic learners – Kinesthetic learners love to learn by doing, which is at the heart of experiential learning. Participants engage in immersive activities that mimic real-life situations and are directly relevant to the workplace.
  • For logical learners – Experiential learning works for logical learners because it challenges them to think about their actions and behaviors, and link it to what they did with the aid of a facilitated debrief.
  • For interactive/social learners – Experiential training appeals to social learners because it is by nature an interactive experience. Expert facilitators engage groups of participants and help them to learn from their shared experiences during the session.
  • For solitary learners – After the collaborative portion of experiential training wraps up, a facilitator-led discussion gives solitary learners the chance to think about their behaviors and actions, how those affected their results, and how the experience relates to their everyday life on the job.

Selecting a Solution That Appeals to All Types of Learning Styles

Though it may be challenging, it is possible to implement workplace training that addresses the needs of the many types of learning styles. Everyone learns differently, so it’s worthwhile to consider the various learning needs that exist within your organization and adjust your training accordingly. Experiential learning in particular includes elements that naturally appeal to many different learning styles and offers benefits that can be appreciated by every employee.


Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

Social Learning Theory and What Experiences Mean in the Future

Trends come and go in the learning and development space. Sometimes new approaches stick, profoundly influencing the shape taken by workplace learning and training for years to come. One such hugely influential trend: Social Learning Theory. Let’s explore how Social Learning Theory works (and why it’s more than hype), how it relates to a newer, “experiences”-driven learning approach, and how this landmark theory can have a positive impact on the future of workplace learning.

Albert Bandura’s Social Learning Theory

To understand Social Learning Theory, let’s look to its originator, psychologist Albert Bandura. Bandura created this landmark theory in the 1970s to explain how we learn, which he developed after conducting his famous “Bobo Doll” experiment. For the experiment, Bandura split a group of children into three sets. The first set observed adults acting aggressively toward a doll called a Bobo Doll; the adults hit the doll with a hammer, tossed around the doll, and committed other aggressive acts. The second set of children observed adults acting non-aggressively toward the Bobo Doll; they played with the doll quietly. The final set of children made no observations and served as the control group.

Later, Bandura and his team directed each child to play with the Bobo Doll on their own. Bandura found that the children who observed the aggressive adults also acted aggressively toward the Bobo Doll, while the children who observed non-aggressive adults imitated their non-aggressive play. From this landmark experiment, Bandura theorized that we learn from each other through imitation, modeling, and observation. He also developed four components of social learning theory, claiming that all of these components must be present for learning to stick:

  • Attention: Behavior must grab our attention in some way for us to imitate it.
  • Retention: We best recall learning when faced with situations that are similar to our initial learning environments.
  • Reproduction: Learning is more likely to be reproduced when it’s reinforced.
  • Motivation: We’re motivated to learn by punishment and rewards.

Social Learning Theory and Experiential Learning: A Comparison

Social Learning Theory has influenced workplace learning design for decades, but it actually has a lot in common with experiential learning, in which participants learn new skills and behaviors by working through hands-on, game-like scenarios. Participants learn that the skills needed to win the game are the same skills they need to “win” at work.

In fact, experiential learning contains the essence of all four crucial components of Bandura’s Social Learning Theory. This is how they fit together:

  • Attention: Bandura theorized that people are more focused on a task if it’s new or different in some way—and that’s what experiential learning provides. Experiential learning combines immersive activities that mimic real-world challenges with a targeted debriefing session that connects the lessons learned with the reality of the workplace. It allows participants to learn by doing, and not by just listening, reading, or watching.  Certainly it’s a different approach from traditional workplace learning, and one guaranteed to capture attention.
  • Retention: According to Bandura’s theory, people are able to recall and apply what they have learned when faced with a situation that resembles their initial learning context. This is exactly how experiential learning is designed—to mirror real workplace scenarios, without being exactly the same.
  • Reproduction: Bandura also posited that people are more likely to reproduce learning when it’s reinforced. That is why post-training retention strategies, such as coaching, one-on-one, small group meetings, and digital reinforcement, are integral to the success of experiential learning.
  • Motivation: Finally, Social Learning Theory puts forth the idea that people are motivated by punishment or reward. With experiential learning, the positive (or negative) outcomes of approaching the game in a certain way are made explicit during the debriefing session, so learners can clearly connect their actions and the consequences.

It’s clear that experiential learning shares much in common with the watershed social learning discoveries made by Bandura many decades ago. Now we can apply more current knowledge about how we learn from each other to the power of experiences. No wonder experiential learning boasts retention rates as high as 90 percent!

The Future of Social Learning and Experiential Learning

At their cores, both social and experiential learning methods are about learning from experiences—experiences that are immersive, interactive, and captivating, leading to learning that sticks. What does it look like as we move forward, this intersection of these two learning approaches? It’s time to bring experiences into the digital realm. Thanks to sophisticated software advances and an abundance of connected mobile devices, we can now learn from practically any place and collaborate with anyone, at any time.

Retention strategies, in particular, represent a new learning frontier; retention and reinforcement programs are particularly suited to involving digital elements that draw from both Social Learning Theory and experiential learning. Gone are the days when “reinforcement” simply meant emailing the slides after a presentation. For example, take the trend of gamification in reinforcement. After an in-person training event, the core teachings of the training are reinforced through online “games,” where learners are immersed in an interactive experience fueled by rewards (like digital badges or prizes). In this way, gamified retention strategies draw on both experiential learning (i.e. their immersive, interactive nature) and social learning (i.e. rewards-based reinforcement).

It’s evident that social learning and experiential learning methods are both built on the same foundational concepts. When these methods are combined, you get learning that lasts, resulting in permanently changed behaviors.


Wondering what a partnership with the Eagle's
Flight team could mean for your training and
development goals?

© 2024 Eagle’s Flight | Website Developed by GrayCyan.com