November 2nd 2020
By Latifa Imamović, Marketing Manager & Ilma Spahović, Marketing and Administration Assistant
It does not come as a surprise that mutual activities and team building enables better communication and relationships in the workplace, together with increased productivity. That is why we at Klika tend to organize plenty of activities that bring our employees together. From OpenPortSessions through which we share and transfer the knowledge, to game nights where our competitiveness comes out in a funny way, we enjoy spending time together and making our team stronger. Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we had to rearrange a lot of these activities. Some of them were canceled, while others went online, but through all this time we were determined to implement our annual team building even if that meant in a bit different format.
Every year, Klika team goes on a team building trip somewhere in Bosnia and Herzegovina for a few days. With that in mind, borders closure was not taken as an obstacle, but since we are a team of around 150 people, we had to forget about doing our traditional team building trip and be a bit creative. In order to comply with all the measures prescribed by the Federal Ministry of Health and Crisis Staffs, instead of organizing a big team building for the whole company, we organized more small team buildings for individual teams. Groups were made up of project teams, or by merging several smaller teams with the rule that one group should not consist of more than 20 members. The goal of Klika Team building 2020 was to strengthen the team while promoting Bosnian and Herzegovinian tourism and supporting the tourism sector which has suffered negative consequences due to the pandemic.
When you put all of this together, it looks like a lot of limitations on the one hand, and ambitious goals on the other. That required from us to be very creative, to devise a good plan, make all the preparations, and expect the unexpected. We wanted to visit as many destinations in our country as possible, respecting different preferences of teams regarding the team building activities.
So, what did we do?
Step #1: First thing’s first: Telling everyone what’s the plan!
Every year as early as April people at Klika start messaging the Marketing team with questions about team building. This year, the priorities shifted a bit, you might have heard about it, but the world was kind of in a lockdown. So basically, nobody was expecting a team building, and especially a complex one as the one we have envisioned. So, the first step was to tell everyone the happy news and explain the whole system and how it’s going to go. People were thrilled to finally do something together, and also, they liked the idea that they will have a chance to pick the team building destination and plan their trip. The Marketing team was there for full support!
Step #2: Research
The next thing we did was an extensive research on tourist destinations, attractions, historical sights, nature, etc. that could be found around our small but amazing country of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Step #3 Making choices!
After we’ve seen it all, thanks to Google, we had to make a list that we could share with everyone on the team. We picked several destinations on mountains, at the sea, in the woods, etc. and made a list that could be extended by the suggestions of everyone at Klika. Everyone was able to come up with an idea of a new destination or activity they would like to implement during their trip.
Step #4 Like a Black Friday back in the days!
/Entering the Excel sheet be like.../
So, after the Marketing team gave out a list of destinations, which was extended by the suggestions of other teams, the first task for teams was to organize themselves into the groups which would go together on a team building trip. After they’d pick the leader of the team, meaning the person who would be responsible to communicate the team’s needs and preferences to the Marketing team, teams proceeded to pick their travel destinations, and since we wanted people to go to as many different places as possible, it was kind of like buying that TV you’ve been dreaming about on a Black Friday in the US once we shared the Excel sheet, since we introduced the rule: first come, first served. After everyone picked the destination and we had information regarding the number of people and travel dates, Marketing team would contact the accommodation unit to check if the requested dates are available and made a reservation. All of the changes in the initial plan were communicated to the Marketing team who then communicated it to the accommodation units.
Step #5 Booking is not the end!
After everything was booked, of course, there were some changes. This team building was not compulsory, and we were not even motivating people to go because of the COVID-19 situation. We did all we could to prevent the spread of infection, and whether they will attend or not, it was everyone's personal choice. Due to the rise in the number of infected people and fear for personal or the safety of their family members, some people had to cancel their trip, and that was totally OK. Still, it required a lot of changes and adjustments of plans.
Step #6 Off we goooo!!!
One group after another they were going on their trips, had a great time, created great memories, shared amazing photos, and created an even stronger bond! The best news was that everyone was OK in the end, no one got infected and everything went just fine!
Team building every day, all day long!
This year’s team building was different not only because it was implemented in smaller groups. Until now the whole organization process was mostly the responsibility of Klika’s Marketing team. This time, all employees interested in team building were a part of an organizational committee. Teams themselves had to choose the destination, make the whole trip plan, organize themselves into rooms, and finally choose or think of an activity they think would be the best for them. Note that some of them were responsible for their meal plans and cooking as well.
By itself, this was one of, and probably the most important, team building activity. Team members got to know each other a little better, but also got a perspective of the huge part of work that Marketing team does every year. Do not take this wrong, this does not mean that our team members are not able to cooperate and give suggestions regarding all of our activities. Actually, we encourage them to engage, and we somehow always make the best choices and ideas when the whole team is involved, but the implementation and organization of activities is almost always a job that Marketing team does.
Sounds like easy work but given that you are trying to organize something during the pandemic, it can get difficult over time. Luckily, we had our teammates who made this whole process a lot easier through their engagement and their effort to #dotheirbest.
The Marketing team wishes to use this opportunity to thank everyone who took part in this year’s Team building, for their #commitment #brilliance #beingafriend #stayingactive #contribution #takingownership and #takingthelead. There are no obstacles for us when we work together! <3 Excited about Team building 2021!