Around 70% of workers in the United States don’t feel engaged with their work.  Yet, businesses understand that it costs far less to retain a current employee than to recruit and train a new one. With that in mind, more and more businesses are looking for ways to create team building opportunities and give their workplace a feeling of team and family.

Cooking Classes for Team Building

Cooking can be the perfect team building activity. Employees will learn skills that help them work better together and then enjoy the meal they’ve prepared together.

Step # 1: Convince Businesses You Can Build Their Teams

When it comes to team building events, most businesses probably wouldn’t immediately think of cooking classes to provide that service. You’ll need to convince them that their employees cooking together will build vital team work skills.

  • Understand that details of team building. You’ll want to show businesses that you understand the skills their employees need to build, such as trust, compromise, and understanding each member’s unique skills.
  • Put together a brochure that shows what you offer. Take photos of a cooking class. List out the skills employees will learn in team building class.

Step # 2: Plan Team Building Activities

Your next step is to plan the actual activities that attendees will learn while taking the team building cooking class.

  • Learning to trust team members. You can easily teach this by pairing up employees and blindfolding one while the other explains what to do to mix spices or some other task. It is best to have them do something that doesn’t involve heat or knives to avoid injury.
  • Teach them team work. You also will want to divide them into teams and have a cook off or a race. The goal is to encourage teams to use each person’s abilities the best way possible. You will want the company executives to give you the names of who to put on each team as they’ll understand the personalities and skills better than you.
  • Offer a time of companionship. People who genuinely like and respect one another are better able to work through conflicts. Be sure to offer time at the end of the evening for the attendees to sit down together and enjoy the meal they’ve prepared.

Step # 3: Get Feedback

If you plan to offer team building activities often, then you’ll want to get feedback from both the attendees and the companies you serve. Each time you get feedback, you’ll discover new ways of doing things.

  • Ask for feedback the night of the event from attendees. Ask them what you could do better. Ask if they have ideas for other tasks they could have performed that would build team skills.
  • Send a questionnaire to company executives. Ask what other offerings they’d like to see. Ask if they feel their employees benefited from the experience and what you could do better.

Step # 4: Follow-Up Offers

To really capitalize on the classes and bring those people back for more activities, offer them incentive to return just for fun.

  • Offer a coupon that allows them to register for another class for a discount.
  • If you offer catering, send a follow-up letter to the decision makers at the company and let them know you offer catering and would love the chance to bring in lunch or cover another event.
  • While the attendees are at your team building event, you should collect their information and encourage them to sign up for your mailing list. You can then send them special offers directly.

Team building can be a natural part of cooking classes. This is an easy niche that you can add to your regular lineup that will bring you new customers and put your business in the spotlight.