Saturday, April 29, 2006

Team Building

Dear Indigna,

I read that as a bid to “increase sales and motivate employees,” this security company, Alarm One, pitted sales “teams” against each other. At “sales staff meetings” so-called “losing” teams were taunted, humiliated and paddled with competitors’ metal lawn signs. Why on earth would any company believe that such abuse would “build employee camaraderie”?

Team Player
Fresno, CA

Dear Team,

Oh come on, what’s a little ribbing between rivals? My team is all for such team-building exercises. For example, at random times throughout the year, and without warning, my employees will show up to work to find an elaborate “Survivor”-style challenge laid out in the parking lot. Employees who are early to work can do the challenge, while those who are just on time or late automatically lose. The challenge is usually some kind of obstacle course that offers a significant chance of serious physical injury or drowning, though sometimes it’s just a memory challenge in which I ask employees to recall details of the personal lives of employees who have been fired in the last year or two. The winner gets a free week in Maui at the Grand Wailea Resort. The losers are denounced as terrorist suspects and sent to Gitmo. It’s all in good fun, and I find that this experience builds tremendous timeliness as well as competitiveness among my team. Camaraderie, I feel, is overrated.


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home