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Team Building Facilitator Skills



Sabre has a diverse set of facilitators and event managers for running everything from fun team building events at a conference or meeting, right up to those who can design and deliver high end team and leadership development programmes.


These are some of the key traits we look for in key personnel to be deployed onto Sabre programmes, projects and events...


Pre requisites and key traits for Event Managers


  • Above average intelligence (both IQ and EQ)

  • Possess good personal leadership traits (Command, Leadership, Management)

  • Problem solving, decision making, staying calm and effective under pressure

  • Excellent speaker and communicator (with charisma)

  • Likeable and ethical

  • Credible to a corporate audience

  • Willing to adopt Sabre’s methods, style and approaches

  • Sufficient command of English language to receive suitable instruction from Sabre


Above average intelligence and self awareness (both IQ and EQ)


Whilst we don't neccessarily need rocket scientists and Rhodes scholars, a person needs IQ sufficient to understand, interpret and effectively deliver everything from simple team games to complex high end business games. 


Such a person will also need to have a clear understanding of a wide variety of theoretical underpinning and then be able to match it to stated client aims and objectives, and also unfolding situations on events.  This person must also be highly aware of their own behavioural outputs and of the reactions of those around them (particularly clients) to be able to quickly adapt appropriately to manage people and situations. 


To effectively juggle both the IQ and EQ related challenges of delivering such events is a rare skill.  The structure, rules etc of events and business games can be taught to a smart person, but they must also have a high awareness of how both self and others are projecting behaviour.


Possess good personal leadership traits (Command, Leadership, Management)


Sabre Event Managers must be leaders who can easily and positively influence those around them (both clients, and staff members) and be highly proficient in the events that they are running.  This is a blend of Command, Leadership and Management.


Command – An Event Manager is given the title and authority to run the project.  They must accept willingly and clearly the authority and responsibility to lead that event /project.


Lead – Leadership is the ability to positively influence others.  They must be able to project the authority given to them to motivate staff and clients and lead from the front.


Manage – The ability to plan and organise effectively.  Be able to control and direct people clearly and with suitable authority to suit the situation.


In a nutshell be able to understand the current situation well, visualise what the desired end state of the activity /project is and have the force of personal presence and charisma to lead the staff and the clients to achieve that outcome.


A good Event Manager is also confident enough to be authentic and to be themselves.  A discerning audience can spot insincerity and will not warm to shallow attempts to be something they are not.  They must have the ability to be master of their own skills and be flexible, but also remember to be themselves and be authentic!


Problem solving ability, decision making skills, staying calm and effective under pressure


Running a team event or business game, working with diverse venues and changing timescales or compressed timescales can result in pressure and rapid changes to circumstances that may be beyond our control. 


The ability to maintain good situational awareness, rapidly read a situation and then make appropriate real time changes or adaptations is critical.  A person must outwardly be able to maintain a calm persona whilst often needing to simultaneously handle stressful logistical or other challenges that arise. 


Poorly organised venues, organisers or even clients can create problems that must be solved calmly and quickly (and often diplomatically) to make things work. 


Excellent speaker and communicator (with charisma)


An Event Manager must be a highly confident, sincere and capable public speaker.  They must be able to speak and think on their feet to engage people way beyond just scripted or prepared content.


Styles may need to shift between “off the cuff” humour and light hearted commentary to quite formal and structured presentations or serious de briefing formats.  A capability to engage one single person face to face then shift to addressing hundreds with charisma, confidence and sincerity is an essential skill.


Whether extroversion in this regard comes naturally to a person or is a learned skill, it is definitely required to be an Event Manager and must come across as a natural skill to our clients.


Likeable, ethical and professional


An Event Manager’s personality and inter personal skills must make them quickly likeable and engaging to other people so that they can quickly establish solid “buy in” and participation from clients (and staff).  If it takes too long to get an audience to warm to a person, they cannot effectively lead a team event. 


A person who has a strong sense of personal ethics and exemplary professional behaviour is also critical as both we and our clients are entrusting them with trade secrets, key personnel and important projects.  A person with poor professional ethics or a lack of self control or decorum in social circumstances is not an acceptable person for Event Management.


Credible to a corporate audience


The aforementioned skills and traits when possessed by a person can go a long way towards making a person credible to a discerning corporate client.


In addition to this it is also a great bonus if that person also has some form of previous experience or employment in a field of endeavour that may have interest or credibility to a corporate client (e.g. teaching or instructional background, success in a unique field of business or performance, military service, sporting or other achievements).


Willing to adopt Sabre’s methods, style and approaches


An Event Manager is expected to project their own unique personality and humour into the role as we value diversity and individuality a great deal. 


We love to have people be authentic and be themselves.  We do however have a successful formula for making things work in this field and there are certain traditional presentation styles or approaches with regards to experiential learning and development that we carefully spurn as not compatible with client aims or our delivery style.


All content, approaches and philosophies to be exposed to clients / integrated into our events must be approved by Sabre. 


We often blend our creativity and are open to a variety of approaches providing they can be matched to commercial reality and pragmatism, but it is always well thought out how this will occur and pre approved by Sabre in consultation with a client.


Some facilitators that we have seen over the years (non Sabre presenters who may have been exposed to a variety of learning and development mediums) cannot help themselves and integrate or force upon clients approaches or philosophies that are clearly not warranted or welcome. 


Many discerning corporate clients will simply “switch off” and not welcome things that they may see as “touchy feely”, inappropriately new age and out of a commercial context or lacking in at least some pragmatism / link to their real world aims.


The events are all about the clients and what will actually deliver the best end results for them.  Events are not a showcase, forum or opportunity for Event Managers to show off any philosophies or approaches that are not specifically requested by a client, appropriate to the event or approved components of the Sabre approach being delivered.


An Event Manager must not integrate any presentation style, content or approaches that are not in accord with the stated aims and objectives of a client, an event or acceptable as being compatible with Sabre’s approaches.




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