Team Building Questions & Activities
Receive answers to team building questions, along with activities to increase job performance. Our free eBook, Team Building At Work, provides powerful team building activities on a whole host of topics. In this chapter we address the issue of professionalism in the workplace.
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It’s important for team members to discover and learn as a group so they can grow together for the purpose of building a stronger team. As team building questions are answered over time, team members better understand what's important to each other and what drives their respective performance.
See if you can identify with the following scenario... From the time we get up in the morning we make important choices about who we are. We choose the clothes we wear; our perfume or cologne; women choose how they apply their makeup and men make a
choice of wearing ties, shaving vs. facial hair, etc. We choose the cleanliness of our automobile or the level of organization/disorganization we display in our work space.
Professionalism is measured in large part by how others perceive you. It’s
not about how much you spend on a suit, but the fact that your suit is
nicely pressed, stain-free and that it compliments your overall appearance.
"Professionalism comes down to managing perceptions and making thoughtful choices about appearance, manners and character."
Professionalism is not about the kind of car you drive, it’s about the pride and care you take in keeping it clean and well serviced. Professionalism comes down to your personal effort.
Smart and self-aware team members make the extra effort to ensure they are perceived
well by others. In turn, those individuals will reap the rewards and benefits that go
along with the increased credibility they earn in the eyes of their
peers and supervisors.
Our exercises answer team building questions and suggest effective activities you can present to your team in an effort to raise awareness on the subject of professionalism.
Activities to Answer Team Building Questions About Professionalism
Professional vs Personal Issues
Purpose: To teach team members the importance of keeping a professional distance
between personal and workplace issues. Team building questions are asked and answered in an effort to elevate the level of professionalism in the work environment.
Explanation: Everyone has experienced days where its difficult to not allow ones personal issues work their way into their professional
environment. As the leader, it is your job to understand first and foremost that
this is a common issue, so you must be consistent in how you deal with it.
The key here is to address the issue before it actually happens by
setting clear expectations of conduct and professionalism for your
One creative manager went so far as to purchase a large golden coat
hook. One morning he proudly stood by the shiny new coat hook as his team walked
into the office one Monday morning.
Later, during his morning staff meeting, as if on cue, one of his employees asked what the golden coat hook was for.
The manager explained that he placed it there as a reminder to himself and a symbol to the team. He said, “You
see, when I come into the office each morning, I’m going to mentally
place all my personal issues onto this coat hook. I’m going to leave
them right there securely on the coat hook knowing full well that every
night before I go home, I will be able to walk over and pick up right
where I left off with those issues. My goal is to ensure I never allow
my personal issues to get in the way of my professional roles and
He then went on to say, “and folks, let me be clear, this is my
expectation for each one of you as well. As a team, we must commit to
this because we owe it to one another to be at our best when we are at work. As a member of this team, we are all empowered to hold one another accountable for this expectation. So
rest assured, when you come in each morning, leave your personal issues
on the hook where they will be safe and secure." Lastly, a bit jokingly, he said,"You have my word that
they’ll remain right there for you to pick up each night before you
With a smile and a nod, each team member understood the analogy and
realized that his request was a perfectly legitimate expectation for the
The leader closed by shared this quote by Frank Tyger who once said, “Professionalism is knowing how to do it, when to do it, and doing it.”
Team building questions around professionalism and other important topics can often be discussed and answered using short stories such as this one.
"A professional is a man who can do his job when he doesn't feel like
it. An amateur is a man who can't do his job when he does feel like
- James Agate
What Have You Done For You Lately?
Purpose: To raise the awareness and the commitment of your team members by
pointing out the rewards that come from raising one's personal expectations of yourself.
Explanation: Demanding more of yourself is a key trait of successful leaders.
Michael Jordan credits his success to the fact that he has always
demanded more of himself than any coach or teammate would ever reasonably demand.
Leaders who excel in business, sports, or other vocation - upon hearing
the goals and objectives of their immediate supervisors - will
instinctively start making a plan to produce and deliver even more to ensure
excellence in every key measurement.
Sounds like a lot of work, right? Absolutely, however these leaders are
passionate about wanting to learn and grow in their career so the extra
effort is something they actually enjoy. It’s the challenge of making
something better that drives them to excel.
"In one moment, in an
instant with one clear decision, we each have the power to change our
path and begin the process of creating an entirely new and exciting
The rewards for these overachievers can be outstanding. They are
typically the first ones to be recognized and promoted to the next level
of management. Their energy, ambition and quality of performance quickly establishes
their credibility and no one seems surprised when they are first to
move upward in the organization.
Upon discussing the rewards of increased responsibility, commitment
and accountability – direct each team member to make a list from the
following team building questions: (Inform team members to be specific and honest, no one else will see their answers.)
- List every new or innovative idea that you’ve offered to the team in the past 90 days.
- List basic fundamental skills that you have recently practiced in order to stay at the top of your game. What special training have
you proactively registered for or taken without first being prompted by your
- List your key objectives for the coming year. Explain what you’ve done already to plan for achieving/exceeding these goals.
- List your current year-end goals and explain if you are on target to
meet those goals. Explain what you’ve done more of, less of, better or different to ensure
The above list of team building questions is provided to point out to team members
that they are the only ones that can truly control their destiny. Their daily commitment to professionalism and performance in the workplace will direct the course of their career as well as impact (for better or worse) the success of the team.
Personal ownership, accountability and consistent professionalism are
all leadership traits that propel highly ambitious and determined
individuals to success. By leading your team through a quality discussion, and having them answer the above team building questions, you can lead your team to improved levels of performance.
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