Enjoyment is a key to success

The Catalyst Team building Model

Published on 18 Jul 2022 by Alex ten Klei

Almost everyone who works at a company has participated in a team-building session at some point. If you google the word, team building, you will encounter all kinds of activities. You can find every activity you will do together with your company or team under team building. Only doing an activity together is not the same as team building.

There are a number of essential differences between an outing and a team-building activity.

  • A team outing is a reward for the staff.
  • A team building activity is an investment.

Using the Catalyst Team Building Model, we also show how you can use a team building activity as a strategic tool.

Enjoyment is critical

The basis of every activity is Fun. It must be fun. We create an environment where you are open to practice and learning. You can then choose one or more areas where the focus is on activity. For example, it can precisely concern skills development, influencing the connection and enthusiasm or (re) activating the culture.

Conversations with our customers often start with the goal. Some organizers have this clearly in mind, and some do not yet. This model helps to choose between these three elements and ensures focus. And it allows you to link a concrete goal to the activity.


The most important element of the Catalyst Team Building Model is fun. We create a safe and playful environment in which everyone can be themselves. This is important because this environment ensures that participants dare to make mistakes and take risks.

This makes them more creative and less wary.

The thresholds and barriers disappear, so that participants show a kind of natural behaviour.

Years ago I taught at a sailing school and strangely enough, the focus was not on learning how to sail. The focus was on fun. If we made sure that the children had fun and felt safe, learning to sail would come naturally.

This safe and playful environment makes it easier for participants to learn and take on challenges. Also to try something different than they normally would. It becomes easier to practice (new) skills.

If you are allowed to make mistakes, you can look for the right solution together to get better and learn. You create an environment in which you can work on a growth mindset. The more you can practice that, the easier it will be to apply in everything you do.

Connect & engage

Many companies are concerned with the issue of coming to the office or having employees work from home. In the ideal situation you don't have to make fixed rules for this and employees prefer to work from the office and they work from home because this works better for some tasks. In companies with a strong culture and committed and enthusiastic employees, everyone wants to see each other and work together towards the goals of the organization.

You can use a team building activity to increase the mutual bond between employees. You can use this to ensure that employees get to know each other better, but also as a basis for increasing employee engagement.

A well-chosen program ensures that team members work together towards a common goal and not against each other in a (sports) competition. An activity can help create shared memories, turning it into a milestone everyone looks forward to.

Activate Culture

Many organizations with a strong and recognizable corporate culture include Apple, Google and Disney. These are companies that communicate who they are and what they exist for. It automatically ensures that you have a clear picture of whether you want to work there or not. A strong culture attracts new employees and keeps good employees on longer.

Successful groups of people share several characteristics that form the basis for a robust collaborative culture:

  • Building Safety
  • Sharing Vulnerability
  • Crafting a Story

A well-chosen team-building activity can contribute to each of these characteristics. It thus helps to strengthen the culture and to highlight certain accents of the culture.

Practice skills

Everyone is consciously involved in learning skills at school for part of their lives at a young age. To a large extent, this is the knowledge you can apply later in a targeted position. After school, there are still training courses, and some companies have an internal learning or training program. Developing structural skills is usually reserved during special leadership programs or trajectories for high potentials. And actually, that's a shame. Everyone within an organization deserves to invest. This is possible during education and training, but there are more options. A team-building program offers a safe and playful environment in which you are open to practice and discover new skills. If you emphasize skills that are important to you as an organization and that fit with the core values and help you get closer to the mission, then that is pure profit for everyone.

The right choice

Are you not sure which of the three circles you want to choose? Because everything might seem applicable? Then read on via the links above or contact us. We like to think along with you to choose a suitable activity that best suits your desired results. Anyway, have fun!

Alex ten Klei

Chief Play Officer

Developing skills and mindsets with gamification and team building solutions.

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Team Building Model
The Catalyst Team Building Model Whitepaper

The Catalyst Teambuilding Model shows how you can elevate a team building program from a reward to an investment in your staff.

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