Rafting as Team Building Exercises
Whitewater rafting is an excellent way to encourage camaraderie and strengthen workplace relationships. Team building exercises don’t have to be at a nearby park or in a meeting room of the workplace to be effective.
Most employees enjoy team building a lot more when it takes place in a new environment and involves participating in sports and fitness activities together. You don’t have to sit around telling your deepest fears and walking on hot coal in order to build up your team spirit (unless you really want to).
Let’s take a look at the top reasons people organize team building activities and how you can carry out those exercises using rafting. Some of these you may prefer to choose a calmer river to use.
Each person in the raft will spend 5-10 minutes as the “guide” and direct the group which way to paddle in order to avoid obstacles or make turns along river bends. Work together to reach different markers and rotate among every employee in the boat without falling behind the other rafters. Employees learn to react to the environment and flow of the river while having the ability to foresee upcoming obstacles and quickly respond.
Learn Personal Backgrounds
Starting with the person in front right side going clockwise, the first person will tell a story from when they were a small child. The next tells a story from their childhood, then preteen, then teenager, then young adult, etc. In this manner, each person gets to share a part of their background from a different stage while remaining part of the team paddling together. The other members practice listening skills and have the ability to engage with the story-teller on a more personal level too.
Everyone in each raft except one person is blind folded and the one with sight has to guide everyone to paddle across a river. Teams will race back and forth across the river and rotate guides until each person has guided the raft to shore. This exercise encourages employees to trust the guidance of each other while the person guiding must adjust their instructions and communication to get their team to paddle effectively as they depend on their advice.
Set up a worse-case scenario such as: the bus forgot to pick up the rafters and they have to stop on a shore and spend the night next to the river. Ask the team to work together to decide what indicators of the river shore would make them choose to stop there, how they would set up a fire, get fresh water, find food to eat, and set up a shelter based on things they see along the river. Have them come up with a list of 10 things they must do in order to survive the night.
Using rafting for team building helps to provide a fun and engaging environment for employees to work on their interpersonal and communication skills together while also valuing their individual skill sets. It helps teams to learn in practice instead of in theory alone while experiencing immediate consequences and requiring creativity and critical thinking to respond with.
Plan your team building river rafting trip with us at Wilderness Aware Rafting today. Our Browns Canyon Half Day Trip is our most popular on the Arkansas River. Contact us online or call us for more information 1-800-462-7238.