9. Take risks. Ron Roberts, president of Action Centered Training, often uses whitewater rafting or paintball, since they "push employees so far outside of their comfort zone that they have to adapt." In one game, 25 to 50 executives at a company played against 10 highly trained expert paintball judges. The judges soundly beat the executives in the first two rounds, resulting in a disgruntled president whose pride was wounded. Ultimately, though, he and the other executives agreed to listen to suggestions on how to improve and won the third round. "Ego is a false sense of self that makes us think we can do everything. And it can destroy organizations," so the humbling exercise was helpful to this company, Roberts said.
10. Set a charitable goal. Charitable team building is on the rise, whether it's helping to build bikes for low-income children or sending supplies to troops overseas. "It shows you can compete and think of others at the same time," which is a critical skill set for leaders, Roberts said.
Goldstein recalled one of his company's exercises, during which employees worked together to make teddy bears for children with Down syndrome. To their surprise, the children arrived to accept the teddy bears.
"If you make everyone in the room cry, you've done a good job," Goldstein said.