Outdoor activities, treks, white water rafting, experiential programs and the likes – we have seen them all. Some programs are just that – a one/two day session while others, though seem to be “forced fun”, change the fabric of our interactions with others.

Well, now there’s a scientific reason to this. Paul Zak, Founder Director at the Centre of Neuro-economic studies has measured the levels of a chemical called oxytocin produced in our body – it is a chemical that is released in our body when we know “we are safe & we can trust”.

In an experiment, participants were required to send money to a stranger via a computer knowing that the money will triple in amount and understanding that the recipient may or may not share the spoils. So here’s the conflict – the recipient can either keep all the cash or be trustworthy and share it with the sender. When they drew blood before and after the exchange to check the oxytocin levels, they figured that the amount of oxytocin recipients produced predict how trustworthy they would be – in other words – how much money they would send back. And that’s because oxytocin makes us more empathetic and trusting.

A Google study similarly found that managers who express concern for team members’ success and personal well being outperform others in the quality and quantity of work.

A study of engineers in Silicon Valley found that those who helped others with their projects not only earned the respect of others but were also more productive.Forced fun like treks, outdoor activities, and experiential programs help in one area for sure – people connect with each other. And when people care for each other – they are less likely to let you down and hence perform better.

But the Big question I have for you is “are your managers and team members concerned about each other at all?”

The fact is – the environment we live in today tells us to be more and more task focused. Do your team members recognise emotions, do they they have empathy for each other ?

Our game based assessments are a great way of figuring out these. All you need to ask your employees to do is download and play. We will tell you how good they are at managing their own emotions and recognising others.

After all, if you don’t know your starting point, you will never know how far you need to go. Getting your employees to take this fun assessment would be a great way to start. We are also good at conducting outbound experiential programs

Write to me at smita@ableventures.in to know more.