A Red-Hot Trend That’s Quickly Catching Fire
In case you haven’t been paying attention, escape rooms feature immersive games where players are ‘locked’ inside a room and tasked with solving the room’s mystery within a set amount of time. Once they solve the mystery or reach the end of the time limit, they are ‘set free.’
Escape games vary at each venue, and each room is themed, so you feel fully immersed in the experience. Popular themes include haunted hotels, abandoned spaceships, tombs, science labs, prisons, and various other locations for grisly murders, germ warfare and zombie invasions.
The top benefit for a team-building exercise is probably bonding because the players must work together to solve the escape room’s mystery. So, teams that are not working together productively at work will find this very useful in building that skill set.
The exercise also assists with leadership, goal-setting and problem solving all vital skills in a work team, such as discovering each person’s strengths and weaknesses.
Escape Games Address Specific Team Building Objectives that Relate Directly in the Workplace
A Common Goal
Team goal setting has three steps.
First, members must determine what they think the overall goal is. Making notes is always a good idea for all team members.
Second, is consultation with all team members to see if there is a consensus. If not, they must work on revising their notes into one common goal.
Third, they compare the revised notes with the entire team. Revise if there is still conflict.
Many teams find this method of determining a common goal helpful. It helps them reorient their members and focus on that one goal.
Everyone deals with conflict in their own way. Escape room team building shows how team members handle conflict, whereas this is not always so visible in the workplace.
During an escape room team-building exercise, members come face-to-face. Everyone gets to see how everyone else deals with conflict. This information is valuable for a few different reasons.
First, the team gets to know and understand work colleagues much better. Understanding a colleague’s strengths and weaknesses in this area are essential.
Second, managers and team leaders can assess which members of their team need help with conflict resolution.
Third, team members who struggle with conflict resolution can be advised to attend workshops to assist them in this area, thus resulting in improved workplace conflict resolution.
To succeed in an escape room requires a team to tackle a problem swiftly and efficiently. That applies to the workplace too. Escape rooms demonstrate the sort of mindset members need to get into to solve problems and work together. Escape games are very effective at showing a team member’s current mindset.
Mindsets can be divided into two categories
First, there’s the Growth Mindset. Those who have a growth mindset see shortcomings as temporary. They recognise the need to ‘think outside the box’ or grow.
Second, and in stark contrast, there’s the Fixed Mindset.
Those who have a fixed mindset see the way things are as unchangeable and see no point in trying to change ‘what is’.
Escape rooms help identify who has a growth mindset and who has a fixed mindset. It’s a tough call to change someone with a fixed mindset. But it’s not impossible. However, if it turns out their mindset stays fixed and unbending, then they are not the people you need on creative teams at work.
Getting teams involved in an escape game has many benefits, one of which is the emergence of leadership qualities. Those that possess these qualities will show themselves very early on in the exercise. Sometimes a false, or unsuitable, leader will take charge immediately, and chaos can ensue. This is when the person with real leadership skills rises to the challenge. They are not necessarily the loudest or bossiest, but they command respect. True leaders know how to harness the strengths of the team and provide the glue that binds them together with encouragement and recognition. A bonus for your company when a leader that has travelled under the radar at work then suddenly comes to the fore.
Getting Your Teams Engaged
Escape rooms see teams exploring a myriad of specially themed rooms and buildings and solve very real problems. They’re fun, engaging, social activities. Like board games and video games, they task players with overcoming obstacles quickly and effectively. Studies have shown that those who play intricate and complicated games become better learners – that’s a pretty big bonus.
Taking a Break
Escape rooms also provide a break from the usual workplace routines, and that’s important. Having fun on such a break makes it more memorable. A company lunch or dinner is nice, but an escape game experience is so much more. Escape game team building provides work-related skills assessments while having fun. It’s a valuable tool for companies to use.
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