10 Team-Building Activities for Engineers (With Benefits)

It’s all about engagement. There’s a pretty clear link between the personal bonds between your team members and their engagement level. A recent Gallup study found that close work friendships boost employee satisfaction by 50%, while people with a self-described best friend at work are seven times more likely to be fully engaged at work.

Another Gallup study reported that engaged companies consistently outperform the competition when it comes to things like profits, productivity, and turnover. (Pretty important stuff if you ask us.) And it stands to reason – the closer you are to your co-workers, the happier you’ll be at work, and the more likely you’ll be to sacrifice your discretionary time to help them succeed.

We asked The Assist, a free weekly email for professionals, along with some of the most engaged, tightly knit companies out there to show us how to do team building right. We’ve broken them down into categories to help you decide which ideas might work best for your company.

10 team-building activities for engineers
  • Egg drop. Create small teams that compete against each other to create a protective container for an egg. …
  • Tower building. …
  • Escape rooms. …
  • Trading puzzle pieces. …
  • Describe a drawing. …
  • Follow the leader. …
  • Telephone. …
  • Two truths and a lie.

10 Best Team Building Activities | What is Team Building | Personality Development Activities by TTS

Benefits of team building for engineers

Team building can offer many benefits to engineers who collaborate on projects. When evaluating its use for your team, consider the following benefits:

It teaches about role responsibility within teams

Team building helps your team visualize what they can accomplish when they work together. Because meeting goals requires work from each member, team building reveals how each team members role can affect the team and project goals. These activities can help team members understand that, although they are individuals, the team only exists when everyone contributes.

It builds trust

Teams often work best when each member trusts the rest of the team. Many team-building activities focus on building this trust. This helps each team member have comfort in sharing their best ideas and work hard to realize them, knowing the rest of the team works equally hard to accomplish their common goals.

It improves communication

Many team-building exercises create scenarios in which teammates must communicate to complete a task. Understanding how to communicate with your team members can help you coordinate projects, connect with support, share knowledge, suggest and discuss feedback and more.

It helps your team get to know each other

Team building can help the members of your team build more personal relationships. This can then help them understand how to relate to and show empathy for each other. This deeper understanding can help your team be more willing to help each other complete tasks, motivate each other and even resolve potential conflicts.

It encourages problem solving

Many of these activities involve limits on both time and resources. By having your team focus on creating a solution under these limitations, they can learn how to solve problems together when the solutions dont immediately seem obvious.

It displays your team members strengths

When your team members learn each others strengths, they can build a better network of help for specific tasks or potential issues. This can also help team leaders understand which tasks they should assign to which team members to ensure a productive workplace.

It can encourage risk-taking

Many aspects of engineering involve experimentation and risk-taking. Some team-building exercises can help teams understand how to analyze when a risk is worth taking, what risks the team can responsibly handle and which members make the best decisions involving risk.

It can ease tensions

Many engineering teams work to meet deadlines. Conflicts sometimes arise when teams get closer to these deadlines. Team building can help show the team how much they can accomplish in tense situations, helping them continue to trust each other as deadlines draw near. This can prevent potential conflicts and alleviate worry about future collaboration.

When your team is working to meet an actual project deadline, try pausing for another short team-building exercise. This can ease tensions, remind your team how well they work together and help them relax before finishing the tasks to meet the deadline.

What are team-building activities for engineers?

Team-building activities for engineers are casual, often fun, group activities that help engineering coworkers learn how to work together better. These activities typically involve working together as a team to achieve a shared goal. Completing team-building activities can help employees understand their individual strengths and how their role contributes to the entire team.

For engineers, many team-building activities often include tasks that use skills helpful to their profession. Some of these skills include:

10 team-building activities for engineers

Consider the following team-building activities for your engineering team:

1. Egg drop

Create small teams that compete against each other to create a protective container for an egg. Typically, your teams receive the same basic tools and materials to create their containers within a time limit. When time is up, each team places an egg in their container and drops them from the same height. The goal is for each team to create a container that prevents the egg from breaking when dropped. This activity encourages problem-solving and can inspire creative risk-taking in solutions.

2. Tower building

Each team receives popsicle sticks, straws or other materials. They also receive tape, rubber bands or another way of binding their materials together. Your teams then compete against each other to see who can build the tallest tower without it falling over. This activity encourages communication among team members and trust in each others choices.

3. Escape rooms

Escape rooms combine many of the goals of team building into one activity. They simulate a locked room from which your team must escape. The team then needs to solve puzzles, look for clues and communicate effectively before time runs out in order to accomplish their goal. Escape rooms can inspire communication and problem solving and highlight individual strengths.

4. Trading puzzle pieces

Teams all receive different jigsaw puzzles. The goal for each team is to finish putting together their puzzle first. However, each puzzle is missing a few pieces. The missing pieces are mixed in with the other teams puzzles. The only way each team can finish putting together their own puzzle is by communicating with the other teams, finding the other teams missing pieces in their own puzzle and trading them away for their own missing pieces. This activity relies on good communication and helps your team get to know each other.

5. Describe a drawing

In this game, your team assigns one member to be an artist. The artist wears a blindfold so they cant see what they draw. The team then decides on an object for the artist to draw, such as a telephone. However, instead of telling the artists to draw a telephone, the team must describe lines and shapes for the artists to draw. The goal is to give instructions well enough that the final drawing resembles the chosen object. This activity encourages communication, builds trust and demonstrates how teams need to work together.

6. Follow the leader

Assign one team member to be the leader. The leader can perform simple actions, make noises or say simple phrases. The rest of the team must imitate what the leader does. Anyone who doesnt accurately imitate the leader is “out” and must wait for the next round to play again. This game can encourage your team to pay attention to the actions and instructions of others.

7. Telephone

For this activity, your team sits in a circle, and you choose one person to hear a message. They pass the message on by whispering this message to the person beside them, who whispers the message to the person beside them, and so on. The person at the very end announces the message they heard out loud, allowing the team to assess and evaluate if and how the message changed from the original prompt. This game measures communication, can ease tension and build casual team goodwill.

8. Two truths and a lie

In this activity, each team member lists three facts about themselves. However, one of those facts is a lie. The other team members try to determine which two facts are true and which one is a lie. This game can help your team learn new things about each other and is especially helpful when forming a new team or integrating new members.

9. Build a spaghetti bridge

This activity inspires creativity as it applies design, planning and construction to the unique and difficult medium of breakable pasta. As an added challenge, you can require each bridge to hold a set amount of weight without breaking. It takes teamwork, problem-solving and communication for teams to build creative designs within a time limit.

10. Create a product

Assign one person to be the judge. The remaining members break off into small teams. Each team receives the same materials and time limit and must design and create an object themselves using the provided materials. When time is up, each team takes a turn describing their object, why its useful and deserves to be chosen. The judge then picks a winner. This game is a good demonstration of how your team can work together, use each members strengths and solve problems.

FAQ

What is a good team building activity?

There are four main types of team building activities, which include:
  • Communication activities.
  • Problem solving and decision-making activities.
  • Adaptability and planning activities.
  • Trust-building activities.

How do engineers use teamwork?

Team-Building Activities to Do During the Workday
  • Share Your Personality. …
  • Play Team or Board Games. …
  • Create a Scavenger Hunt. …
  • Untangle a “Human Knot” …
  • Give Out Blind Directions. …
  • Do a Silent Line-Up. …
  • Host a Lunch and Learn. …
  • Have a Hack Day.

What are the 14 indoor team building activities?

Engineering and teamwork are a perfect match. To be a successful engineer is to develop strong teamwork skills in order to ensure a smooth workflow process. Whether it’s a project team, product development, or a manufacturing team, effective teamwork is the core of technical and engineering operations.

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