Top 10 Learning and Team Development Activities

08 May 2024 · 9 min read

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Leadership Development Team Building Activities

Do you want to get more out of your team building activities? Furthermore, have you had enough of fun and games? Would you like your team to do more than bond? Therefore, are you thinking your next event could include team development activities?

Ultimately, you are not alone. As a result, Team development and training activities are a growing trend. Thus, if you want more out of your event,  you are in the right place.  This article lists the top ten options. Moreover, we’ve got the answers to your questions and much more. This includes how do different learning styles impact team building.

Firstly, we are going to explain how to get the most out of these activities. They are great learning tools. Secondly, we will explain how to choose the right activity, and how to avoid some simple mistakes. Finally, we will answer frequently asked questions.

What are Team Building Activities for Professional Development?

Team building activities for professional development is a special category. It ultimately delivers more than bonding. Thus, it features team development and training activities that will help your team learn and be more effective.

Team Development Activities range from problem-solving exercises to sessions on business topics. Therefore, what makes them great is they blend engaging activities with powerful learning. In other words, you get improved return on investment because people can relate the lessons to the workplace.

However, not every team building event can do that. A lot of activities only provide a great bonding experience. Thus, they fall short if you want to transfer learning back to work.

Therefore, Team building activities for professional development are different. They highlight learning that can be transferred back to work. This then creates powerful outcomes for your team. Additionally, they will learn how to work together more effectively.

Benefits of Team Development and Training Activities.

The benefits of this category are amazing. Leadership development team building activities can provide great learning. Your team can benefit from:

  • Improved communication
  • Performance gains
  • A more harmonious workplace
  • Stronger problem-solving
  • Clearer leadership

And much more.

Team Building Activities for Professional Development how do different learning styles impact team building

Team Development Activities vs Team Bonding and Reward. 

Team Bonding Activities.

Firstly, let’s start by admitting that team bonding and reward activities are amazing. They are so much fun. You can enjoy unique events you may not experience any other way. For instance, when was the last time you tried laser clay shooting or mixed cocktails? Is there another way you could do an amazing race or survivor? There are so many options available. For this reason, you could do just about anything. For example, you could drive Go Carts, play Paintball, ride Segways, sail Yachts, gamble, solve murder mysteries, compete in game shows, and more.

These events can lift moral because they are so exciting. As a result, they are a simple way to give people a great experience. Thus, people will feel valued and rewarded. They will also get your team interacting and building connections. Consequently, people will bond over a common experience. They will meet and interact with each other. In short, they will have enjoyed a good experience. Thus, creating a stronger team bond.

But let’s be honest. It doesn’t go much further than that.

Bonding and reward activities should thus be seen a chance to build connections. As a result, people will interact and share information more freely. This will ultimately translate to better communication when they are back at work.

Team Development Activities.

However, Team development activities are different. They bridge the gap between fun activities and team development and training. Additionally, most include a problem-solving exercise that highlights a team issue. The leader reviews the activity to draw out key learning. Consequently, they are then able to link that learning to business principles.

The key difference between these two options is specifically the link to work. Team building activities for professional development will create learning. As a result, they will develop leadership skills and build an effective team. Thus, it’s more than bonding. They provide genuine learning that will improve team performance.

Some events are more training focussed. They provide education in business issues like culture or resilience. These options particularly provide training in specific topics. For example, you can focus on things like customer service, personality profiles, communication, leadership, and more.

Read more on Team Building using Experiential Learning

You can also check out our dedicated Learning and Development category page.

Our Top Learning and Development Team Building Activities.

Leadership Development Team Building Activities – A key difference

When you buy team bonding and reward you are paying for the activity. You are getting something that is a new experience for your team. The activity is the focus of the exercise. The provider is sharing a specific skill, like cooking or art.

When you buy team development activities you are paying for the facilitation. The learning is the focus of the exercise. Subsequently, you need someone who can highlight that learning for your team.

It’s a different skill set. One is able to engage the team in an activity. The other can engage the team in learning, which they can link to the workplace. They will read your group, observe their behaviours, and highlight areas for improvement.

Leadership development team building activities need to be debriefed. You need someone with experience that can see and highlight the team dynamic. They will cover topics like:

  • How to develop team leadership skills
  • How to build an effective team
  • How to lead a team effectively
  • How to build a high performing team

To make this possible team development and training activities are run in smaller groups. This makes it easier for the facilitator to observe behaviours and debrief the exercise. They need to be closer to the action. The activity will be more expensive. But you will enjoy stronger learning outcomes and a better return on investment.

Further information on this topic can be found in this article by Session Lab – Best Leadership Development Activities.

Choosing the Right Team Building Activities for Professional Development

The first decision is whether you want bonding and reward or learning.

If you want bonding or reward then choose a fun activity. Something that will be unique and different for your team. Subsequently, your objectives will be things like connecting, engaging, bonding, and having fun. The activity will determine how well you meet those objectives.

Learning Objectives

However, if learning is your focus then choose a facilitator. Someone that will bring experience and observations.

In this case, your objectives will be more targeted. They will include things like:

  • Building a high performing team
  • Dealing with conflict in the team
  • Fast tracking the team development
  • How do different learning styles impact team building
  • Learning about leadership

Ultimately, the debrief will determine the success of your team development activities. Therefore, choose someone that can explain their approach to achieve your outcomes. To clarify, they should be able to link the activity to the workplace.

How to Improve Team Development Activities with Specific Objectives

The second decision is what you want your team to observe and learn. In other words, what are your objectives from the activity?

  • Is there a specific dynamic in your team you want to target?
  • Are they competing with each other?
  • Do they trust each other?
  • Do they share information?
  • Are they aligning to the same goal?
  • Are they clear on their roles and accountabilities?
  • Are people competing for leadership of the team?
  • Do they keep their commitments?
  • How do they respond under pressure?
  • Do they trust their leader?
  • Do they plan effectively?

The right activity will create that dynamic. This will therefore give the team immediate feedback on that issue. That is, they will see and feel how it affects the team and learn from that experience. The debrief therefore, will help them recognise potential areas for improvement.

This approach provides a deeper level of learning. People are active participants in the process which makes the lessons more memorable. Thus, your team will feel them at a visceral level which creates stronger learning outcomes.

Level of Difficulty for your Leadership Development Team Building Activities

The third decision is to choose the level of difficulty.

The right Facilitator will be able to recommend the perfect level for your team. To clarify, making it too hard will cause people to people switch off. Thus, making it too easy you won’t create the dynamic needed to highlight the learning.

This is important for leadership development team building activities. You ultimately need a level of difficulty that will challenge the leader while still being achievable. You don’t want them so frustrated they don’t learn anything.

Other variables

The fourth decision is based on your situation.

For example, you need to think about things like timing, location, venue, etc. These include, do you want an indoor or outdoor activity? How much time have you allowed? How much space is needed?

There are a lot of options. Therefore, the clearer you are the easier it will be to find the right activity.

Here are some further examples of Leadership activities in an article in Positive Psychology.

Common Mistakes in Team Development and Training Activities

To get the most out of your team development activity you will need to avoid these common mistakes.

  1. Not allowing enough time to debrief. A good leadership development activity will generate a lot of discussion. You need to allow plenty of time, especially if people disagree! These activities can generate strong feelings. You need to give people time to both process and discuss those feelings.A good rule of thumb is to allow longer for the debrief. A 45-minute activity will need at least 60 minutes of discussion, or more.
  2. Leaving the activity till last. This is a common mistake, and it’s crazy! People do it because they want to finish on a high. Why? Wouldn’t it be better to start on a high? Do the activity at the start of your event. This way you get all the benefits during your event. People will continue talking and form amazing bonds. You will also enjoy higher levels of contribution, and engagement. You are doing team development activities to build a strong team. Why not do that at the start, so you have a strong team for the event? It makes no sense to leave the team building activities and professional development to the end of your event.
  3. Trying to get learning out of the wrong activity. Don’t make the mistake of trying to debrief an activity that is for fun and reward. It’s like trying to get blood out of a stone. It just won’t happen. There’s very little to learn about leadership from a drumming circle, or cooking. Make sure the activity will highlight the team dynamic you want to challenge. Then check the facilitator can facilitate a debrief that will link the learning to the workplace.

How to Build a High Performing Team?

The best teams are aligned to a common goal. There are different ways you can recreate this dynamic. One option is to choose an activity that has competing goals. Did the team collaborate or compete? Did they share their goals and work together? A second option is to choose an activity with a vague goal. Did the team talk about it and agree on their goal for the exercise?

The best teams also clarify roles and responsibilities. This is easy to create with a problem-solving exercise. Did they discuss the roles they would need? Did they clarify roles for each individual?

This is a great example of creating the dynamic you want to explore.

How do different learning styles impact team building?

This question highlights why team development activities are so effective. They appeal to all learning styles.

We all learn better when we do something. The Confucian scholar Xunzi captured this idea with his quote:
“What I hear I forget, What I see I remember, What I do I understand”

He was highlighting that hearing is not as good as seeing. Seeing is not as good as experience. Giving people an experience is the ultimate teaching tool. You are helping them embed the learning.

Team development and training activities create a personal learning journey. People take the lesson from the activity that is most meaningful for them. People also learn at their own pace.

Read more on identifying your teams learning styles to better training in this article by Seismic.

How to develop team leadership skills?

Leadership development team building activities are perfect. Potential leaders experience the impact of their actions and decisions. This helps them learn and grow as leaders. You can then link leadership principles that will enhance their knowledge. The combination of experience and theory is extremely powerful. This combination is the basis for Experiential Learning Activities.

How to manage a team successfully?

The old school “command and control”; approach is no longer accepted. Leaders must learn to engage their teams. This requires conversation and interaction about what is important.

Team building activities that are used for professional development teach leaders effective management skills. They show leaders how to engage their teams to achieve great outcomes.

We found this article helpful on Developing Successful Leaders. 

Need help choosing the right activity?

Give us a call. We can recommend the right option for your needs.

Contact us

Let us organise your next event. Remember Team Building was meant to be easy.

Team Building Activities are an integral component of building and developing your team. But how can you make sure you choose the right activity to suit your team’s needs? We have written an in-depth article – Ultimate Guide to Team Building Activities for just that purpose. By the end of it you will be an expert and know all the advantages, drawbacks, common mistakes. It will guide you to organise an amazing Team Building Activity. We share resources and our extensive knowledge and experience. This will be helpful for organising corporate team building activities.

Team Building Made Easy is a brokerage service. Contact us, and we can help you find the right one.

We pride ourselves in offering tailor made experiences. We want to help you get the most out of your Team Development and Training Activities Please feel free to get in touch and have a chat. We will find out what you want from your Team Development Activities  Therefore, helping you choose the right activity. That is, the one that meets your outcomes, and budget.

Get in touch today!

Frequently Asked Questions

The minimum number would be around 8. The maximum number to get maximum learning is around 20 people per group. These numbers depend on the activity. 

They are usually run in person. It is usually better to run the activities as offsite events, so people are fully immersed in the team development activities. If you hold them in the office setting people tend to get drawn back to emails and phone calls.

No. By using the services of Team Building Made Easy, you will not be charged any hidden costs or charges.  We have arrangements in place with all our listed providers to ensure they quote to us as they would quote directly to you the user if you were to go to them directly.


  1. Team Building Made Easy Pty Ltd is a booking agent for companies that provide team building activities. Team Building Made Easy Pty Ltd is not the provider of these activities.
  2. When you book an activity through Team Building Made Easy you are purchasing a credit for team building to the value of that booking. Subject to these terms and conditions you may use that credit for any team building activity available through Team Building Made Easy.

Booking Terms

  1. Bookings must be confirmed in writing by either signing and returning the Team Building Made Easy quote or by replying to the email containing the quote and clearly stating you wish to proceed with the team building activity as quoted.
  2. Once you return a confirmation by the means listed in item 3 you are committed to that booking and subject to these terms and conditions.
  3. Payment must be made at the time of booking.
  4. Payment may be made by Direct Deposit, Company Cheque, Visa, Mastercard, or American Express.
    - Payments made by Visa, Mastercard will incur a surcharge of 1.92% plus GST and for American Express it is 3.4% plus GST

Provider Terms

  1. Some Providers have specific Terms and Conditions which are in addition to these Terms and Conditions and are outlined in your quote. In the event of a conflict between these Terms and Conditions and Provider Terms and Conditions the Provider Terms and Conditions will have precedence.


  1. As a booking agent for companies providing team building activities Team Building Made Easy will not be responsible for any loss, injury or damage incurred or suffered by any participants during an activity.
  2. Where any liability is transmitted through a point of law to Team Building Made Easy then the maximum aggregate liability of the Team Building Made Easy, its directors, employees, agents and servants for all claims under or relating to this contract or its subject matter is limited to an amount equal to the Fees paid by the customer under this Contract.

Dispute Resolution

  1. Should any dispute arise from an activity then as a booking agent for companies providing team building activities Team Building Made Easy will use its best endeavours to help you resolve the dispute with the provider. Please note however that as a booking agent we do not have direct control over the provider and as provided for in clause 10 of these terms and conditions any dispute and or refund will be based on the provisions of the Provider’s contract


  1. Team Building Made Easy reserves the right to change these terms and conditions at any time.

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