As we mentioned in our blog last week, fall is here and it’s a great time to get outdoors with a team building activity. The weather is cooler, and your team may need a boost of motivation to get through the rest of the year.
With this in mind, scavenger hunts are a great choice for a fall team building activity. They let your team explore new areas outdoors. Plus, they really build stronger relationships on your team as well, allowing members to spend quality time together while solving challenges where they have to work together to succeed.
What is an outdoor scavenger hunt?
First let’s quickly review what a scavenger hunt is.
A scavenger hunt gives teams certain challenges that they must accomplish by going around to different locations in a given area. They then search for clues on signs, buildings, monuments, etc. that can help them solve their challenges within the given time limit.
For example, to solve a certain puzzle teams might have to find a particular statue. The puzzle will connect with the shape of the statue, or what’s written on the placard nearby. Once they finish that puzzle, they move on to the next one that uses a different location.
In this way, teams get to explore areas that they might not have otherwise. Unusual buildings and monuments that people usually overlook are often used in scavenger hunt games, which makes them good for exploring parts of cities that are “off the beaten path”.
So in the following post, we list the reasons why outdoor scavenger hunts are such a perfect match for fall and how they can benefit your team in general.
1. Spend time outdoors
Obviously, this is at the top of our list since it’s fall, which is one of the best times to get outdoors. Team members may have been cooped up inside away from the heat and avoiding infection, making it a good chance to get some fresh air. Your team can also get a chance to look at the beautiful fall leaves.
Spending time outdoors has another benefit, which is that it’s not in the office. Team building is most effective when it takes teams away from their normal routines and work environments, allowing them to refresh their ideas, break through social barriers and open up more easily.
2. Explore new places together
As mentioned above, scavenger hunts usually take teams to places that are unusual or overlooked. Even if you’ve been to a city a thousand times before, there will always be places that you haven’t been to, and a good scavenger hunt leads you to those places.
This sense of exploration and discovery is the true charm of outdoor scavenger hunts, and one of the reasons why they make such good team building activities. By exploring new areas together, your team gets to learn new things together as well, which strengthens bonds and creates shared, lasting memories.
3. Motivate your team
Fall especially is a wonderful time to motivate your team members, since it comes right before the last push of the year. Many teams are busy in winter, finishing up projects and attending end-of-the-year parties. So an outdoor scavenger hunt can really help spur your team to cross that year-end finish line.
All the discovery and exploration in scavenger hunts is great at motivating teams. They’ll be gaining new ideas and having fun solving challenges and puzzles, which will create positive feelings towards succeeding together.
4. Think creatively and look forward
Fall is a period when team members can reflect on the past months, while at the same time having a sense of what might be coming down the line during the next year. Which means that fall is the time of year when teams can start planning ahead and thinking of new ideas. For this to happen though, sometimes people need to get inspired and their creativity let loose.
By utilizing exciting puzzles and giving teams a sense of discovery, outdoor scavenger hunts can inspire teams to think differently, and more creatively. It may even spark some new ideas, or let team members form new working relationships that will be advantageous in the following year.
5. Reconnect and strengthen relationships
At their core, outdoor scavenger hunts build relationships and connect teams together. They strengthen bonds by letting team members spend quality time with each other in new environments. Yes, the challenges are designed to get teams to work together, but a lot of the bonding can happen in between these challenges too–while walking together, taking a break, or seeing something interesting that may be unconnected to the game.
Summer is often a time when teams are dispersed, due to vacations and less heavy workloads. With the rise of remote work and hybrid teams, this feeling of dispersion and lack of unity may be even greater. So this fall can be a good time to get everyone back on the same page with an in person scavenger hunt game that will revitalize relationships and team unity.
At Invite Japan we have featured scavenger hunts at part of our team building lineup. And we have developed a number of scavenger hunt games throughout the Tokyo area (including Asakusa, Nihonbashi, and Yokohama) and even in other cities for our clients. Contact us for more information about how to plan an outdoor scavenger hunt activity for your team this fall, and to find out about our other team building programs.