After deciding it was time for a team building event, planning it out with all the details in mind, and attending the event on the day, how can you know if the entire process managed to tick all the boxes you were looking to tick?

Try these strategies and look for these signs to find out!

It went as planned

First thing’s first – did your event go as you expected to? For example, did everyone turn up, complete the activity, interact, and get home safely?

It’s a simple box to tick, but an important one. Not all events managers and human resources staff can claim that every event has been able to meet these basic standards, so it’s notable when everything goes according to plan.

Follow-up surveys

A quick, anonymous online survey is one of the easiest and most quantitative measures you can use to find out what your team members thought of the event.

Try to include a mix of ‘yes’ and ‘no’ questions (to give you clear percentages as an indicator of success) and open-ended questions (to offer space for an attendee to clarify thoughts, suggest improvements, and comment on least-favourite aspects).

Talk to the third party

 Many team building events will involve a third party person or persons. For example, if you were to take a cooking class here at VictorsFood, the third party would be our wonderful chefs. Even if you simply take the team out for dinner and drinks, your third party would be the restaurant manager and waitstaff.

These people have seen their fair share of events, and they usually have a strong eye for telling when one goes well. They can gauge the mood in the room, talk briefly but openly to attendees, and fill you in afterwards on their thoughts about how it went.

Goal setting

When you first decided you wanted to run a team building activity, what were your motivations? Think back to exactly why you initiated the process, and use it as your bar.

Many events simply exist to boost the morale amongst a group, and it’s usually easy to spot this change directly after an event. Other events function to welcome a new team member to the group, which could be judged from a quick one-on-one with that team member after the event.

Imagine what failing would look like

It’s not always easy to accurately measure the success of an event if you don’t have clear-cut standards to meet. In this case, spend some time thinking about the opposite – what would have happened had the event been a failure?

Would members not have worked together? Would they have enjoyed the outing but returned to the workplace looking sullen? Would one or two members of the team be left out?

If you can’t match any of your possible ‘red flags’ with what actually happened, it’s more likely that the event went off without a hitch!