“You undercharged me. I got enough value out of it just for me, let alone my team… We were working at 60% of our target capacity. Now –immediately – we’re up to 80%.”
JOEL, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR
“After seeing a workshop once, I’ve hired [The Yes Works] twice and am preparing to engage them for a third program on building strong and effective teams.”
DAVE SHAPIRO, CEO, EXCELL PUGET SOUND
“I dread team building, and I loved this. The [One-Legendary-Team Lab] was like team building without the cheese.”
KELLY MCCANN, ASSISTANT CONTROLLER, TECTAINER
“This was exactly what we were looking for.”
MEGAN HANSEN, SVP PEOPLE, MOD PIZZA
You Might Be Ready For Team Building that Lasts If…
There are two kinds of leaders in the world. There are those who think, “This is the way it is,” and who let the chips fall where they may. And there are those who know, “However good things are, no matter how strong we are, they can be better. We can be better.”
The latter don’t leave their company culture to chance. They decide to engineer a culture where people and profits both thrive.
If you’re that second kind of leader – if you get off on continual improvement – then our One-Legendary-Team Labs (communication and collaboration training) may just be right for you.
Other Reasons To consider Team Building That Lasts
- You’re thinking, “Need more soft-skills/people skills/communication skills”
- You’re sick of mediating distracting conflict among your team.
- It’s time for your company offsite, and you want it to be both transformational and fun.
- You’re frustrated that your team is avoiding tough mission-critical conversations because they’re hard and scary.
- You’re planning/anticipating change, and dreading the process. Change readiness trumps change management.
- You’re about to close on your newest acquisition, and you insist on bucking the failed M&A pattern
- that your best talent keeps leaving & your less-best keeps staying.
- People aren’t helping each other, and balk at meeting reasonable requests.
- Communication is good, maybe great, and still…Miscommunication and missing communication are costing you.
Results You Might See From Teamification Labs…
In short, we roll up our sleeves with you to support your ever greater teamification. Better work-lives for your people and better work results from them.
Clients report greater mutual understanding on their teams so they find better solutions, quicker conflict resolution so they are more productive together, more plentiful communication so people aren’t duplicating work or working at cross purposes and resources aren’t wasted.
With greater synergy and less waste, people thrive and profits rise.
This isn’t a magic bullet. You and your team have work to do in order to achieve these results. We’ll make that work much easier, quicker, and more fun.
That certain something… That chemistry you’ve been looking for on your team that helps you click along together as a team like a single organism with a shared nervous system… That’s our goal for you as a result of going through this profound experience of – not simply team building – building your team.
Kelly Fox, CEO of Lumber Traders said our work with his team led to, “the smoothest acquisition transition we’ve ever had.”
Marianne Morrow, CEO of 9th Gear said that what she’s gained working with The Yes Works, “allows me to to deal with high intensity conflict in a manner that allows me to extinguish emotion yet provide a suitable outcome… Working with you helps us keep the drama outside the ropes at 9th Gear. Building a business has so many ups and downs; keeping EVERYONE on an even keel and paddling in the same direction is a science and an art form.”
Team Building That Lasts FAQ
Indeed. Here’s a quick story.
When we asked Joe McSwiney, CEO of SOG Knives, how our work with his team was different from what he’s seen from other providers of team building and culture support, he said, “Totally. Your approach was a lot easier to host and got to the point faster… It was a thought provoking, assumption-challenging experience that opened the windows to the real us.”
Joe put his team through these labs because he had a newly assembled leadership team at SOG Knives. Joe wanted to accelerate effective synergy between them and dedicated himself to building a cohesive, deliberate culture of fun in order to get there.
Joe brought us in for a half-day One-Legendary-Team Lab with his leaders, and experienced a change in their dynamic. And it lasted.
6 Months later, Joe reported:
- 50% boost to mutual appreciation so people enjoyed their work and collaborations more – productivity up.
- 30% increase in mutual understanding – conflict down
- 80% increase in their ability to communicate positively and productively under pressure – agility and problem solving up
Creating that culture of fun brought SOG Knives’ new leadership team to peak productivity swiftly and allowed them to reach their stretch goals early.
Makes sense. Nothing bonds a team like results.
Speaking of results…
If you’ve got a new or changing team, you may be dismayed to learn that it takes a new team up to 3 years to reach peak productivity together. That’s a long time to wait for maximum results.
If that’s too long for your liking, you’ll be happy to learn that with team-calibration through training in communication and teaming, that 3 year timeline can be shortened to 6 months.
6 months is shorter than 3 years. Way shorter. And that means more productivity sooner, more revenue, and especially more profitability.
There are many reasons traditional team building may fall flat. The term itself, “team building,” is rather wonderful. It’s evocative and valuable… desirable. And perhaps because of that, people have taken up the marketing opportunity to frame any and every activity as team building.
It started with, “Does this require trust and teamwork?” (Think ropes courses.) Then it’s team building. Next, “Can we do it together?” (Think paintball and tug-of-war.) Team building! Now, even things we can do simultaneously while idly chatting (painting over a glass of wine, or even simply marguerita time) are called team building.
According to marketers, if we can share an experience, then we’re team building.
The trouble with that is: a) We don’t all like the same kinds of experience. Some of us (the extroverts, perhaps) are loving this karaoke night, while others are miserable, stuck between a rock and a hard-place. They can sing (terror), or they can be outsiders (career fear). b) We all easily step into and reinforce our habitual roles. In trying to get out of the puzzle room, leaders step forward as leaders. Followers follow along. Naysayers say nay. We go back to the office more entrenched in past habits than we were before. Those who had fun may feel closer-knit. Those who didn’t, feel further isolated. c) We learn in predictable ways and from science-backed means. Most team building activities were activities for fun first, then they were marketed as team building.
What works… Creating an activity from scratch intended specifically to build skill and generate productive habit. Build the activity to be fun – secondarily. Some percentage of participants will inevitably find any activity in the world not-fun. When learning, skill, and change are built-in to the core DNA of the team building activity, even those who don’t have fun will be affected for the better and will reap the benefits.
Simply… Wherever you are, we can be there too.
Before the pandemic, our One-Legendary-Team Labs were in-person-only. So nearly all of our clients were Greater Seattle/Puget Sound Region companies.
When the pandemic forced us all into our respective spaces, we at The Yes Works locked ourselves into a Zoom room and vowed not to emerge until we’d transformed our workshops to be some of the best experiential virtual learning opportunities in the world. One of our pre-pandemic clients who had been amazed at how engaging and valuable our in-person work was said, “I was afraid engaging you virtually was going to pale by comparison. I would not have thought this possible. It was amazing.”
So we’re now working with clients all over the country and even the world including Medtronic’s sales team in Asia, TextExpander’s team with team members on multiple continents, and others.
We’re back to working in person – around the Puget Sound (and other parts of the country) – and we’ve happily carried on our live virtual and hybrid trainings as well. It’s a new world, and we’re here to help you meet it with gusto…
Wherever you are!
We use handwritten notes because we’re analogue creatures with analogue brains in a digital world. There’s something captivating about watching someone write. The notes help the information stick. And many of our participants have told us, “When I review the notes, I’m not only reminded of the information. It’s like I re-experience the session.”
Most of what we write in a given session isn’t our information for you. Rather, it’s the stuff you as participants tell us. So most of our notes are you, talking to you. And you like you. You listen to you.
And, fear not. The fundamental principles of effective teaming that these three sessions are built upon… We’ve designed them into handouts/posters we’ll give you as well. So you’ll get our handwriting – and you’ll get something pretty to boot.
Across the three sessions, we will introduce and give you experience employing 8 principles of effective teaming – and it’s not just team-training. It’s leadership development as well.
These aren’t vague qualities that everyone can agree are important but that are ephemeral and ill defined so they can’t be put to immediate use. They’re actionable, practical guidance that improves the individual experience of your team members while simultaneously improving the performance of the team, making it more productive, adaptable, and efficient.
Session one – “Trust Is an Action” – delivers 4 principles that create a got-your-back culture. The research is in. Teams where people feel safe and supported perform better (produce more, are more creative, and overcome obstacles) than teams where people don’t. The more got-your-back, the more teamy, the more value created for the organization.
This session will result in more information flow, quicker problem detection and circumvention, and elevated morale. You’ll get more done together better, leading also to greater talent retention.
Session two – Teamified Relationships – builds on the got-your-back culture you’re creating to sharpen the instruments of observation and communication in your team using three more principles. Together, you’ll notice more so you have more valuable data. You’ll hone your communication so you make better decisions. And you’ll transform conflict from a destructive force into a refining fire so engagement and enrollment climb. Your team will build community, loyalty, and sustainability. You’ll be uncommonly responsive… To each other, to your market, and to your customers.
Session three – Teamified Unstoppable Momentum – delivers the last of our 8 fundamental principles of effective teaming.
To thrive as a business, you’ve got to generate momentum to push you through the many obstacles, pivots, and crises that confront you. There’s always friction. There are always setbacks. It’s the companies with momentum that seem impervious to the headwinds.
Session three’s principle will give your team a simple framework to ensure that every action, every interaction, adds momentum to the flywheel, and your company’s momentum steadily and relentlessly grows so you can’t be stopped – come hell or high water.
Will this be fun?
We’ve been making people say, “I usually hate this kind of stuff, but I loved this,” since 2014. (Yes, that’s a real quote, and the sentiment is oft repeated.)
We like fun. We want this to be fun for us – and more importantly, for your team. We’ve bent over backwards to create an experience that will meet you and your team – as a group and as individuals – exactly where you are at. We’ve taken multiple personality styles into account and designed something to benefit a wide array of people and teams.
Sarah Little, VP & Corporate Controller at Textainer said, “I was dreading this. I usually hate this kind of thing. And I loved this. Thank you! It was valuable and it was fun.”
And Sarah’s not alone. We’ve heard similar sentiments over the years from many, many people who had fun despite “hating this kind of thing.”
That said, even we can’t please everyone. There have been individuals who found our approach was neither fun, nor valuable.
And what’s fun about that… The most vocal and detracting person who told his employer, “That wasn’t useful at all. We shouldn’t work with The Yes Works again,” became more cooperative, communicative, and easy to get along with after working with us. That’s what his coworkers reported months later.
And his supervisor… His supervisor before working with us was so anxious about the impending conflict-ridden war-zone that his team meetings had been that he actually often vomited before those team meetings.
After working with us, those meetings had so transformed that he started looking forward to them.
We’ll help you plant the seeds. We’ll show you how to water the garden. We’ll become your gardener’s assistants if you wish. You’ll have to get your hands dirty and garden your culture as well.
If you do, you’ll see this garden blooming and bearing fruit for years to come.
Each of the seeds we plant (8 fundamental principles of high-performance teaming) is associated with a sticky phrase that almost without effort becomes part of the vernacular of the teams we work with. So these seeds catch on quick and root deep.
Katie Parris, owner and CEO of The Part Works went through a session with us in 2017. Five years later, she was reminded of some of these phrases. “We got that from you!?” she exclaimed. “We say that all the time.”
Others have told us, “Even our new hires start saying this. It’s catchy. Contagious. It’s part of how we talk now as a company.”
And the CEO of TextExpander, Philip Goward said, “Your work is a part of the fabric of our company.”
That’s the nature of fundamentals. This isn’t window dressing. It’s foundational. And we’ve figured out how to use the science of brains and teams to plant these seeds deep where they can really take root.
Any decent sized conference room can accommodate these Teamification labs. Clients bring us directly to their offices, and they ask us to join them at offisites.
Both have their advantages, and we love both.
As team building programs go, this is better than a ropes course. Fits in your office.
If you want your company offsite to be both fun and transformational, we’re a great option for you.
That’s a subjective question. To us, it’s just plain critical human-stuff.
We’ve worked with some very serious executives at every level of organizations of all sizes and across industries. We haven’t been loved by 100% of thousands of people we’ve worked with. But our batting average is darned good.
Just read what SOG Knives CEO, Joe Mc Swiney said, “Teamwork was better afterwards for sure. One individual didn’t quite take to the style. It was too touchy-feely for him. But he actually got better too.”
And that’s a story we’ve heard a lot. So-and-so didn’t like it, but the rest of us did… And so-and-so got better.
“Team building that isn’t lame,” is a common google search. That’s a reflection of how people feel about the experiences they’ve had.
Because, often the lessons are trite. The fun is personality specific. And any objections to the “lessons learned” are often treated with derision rather than respect.
We believe in the science this stuff is built on – and we believe in the humanity and validity of the folks we’re here to serve.
So… Team building that isn’t lame? Let’s ask Kelly McCann
“I dread team building, and I loved this. The [One-Legendary-Team Lab] was like team building without the cheese.” Kelly McCann, Assistant Controller, Textainer