War Cry for Team Building: 5 Epic Ways to Rally Your Team

Enter the concept of the “war cry” for team building and “haka team building” – powerful tools that can transform a group of individuals into a cohesive unit, ready to tackle any challenge with zeal and unity. Drawing inspiration from the traditional Maori haka, these practices have found their place in modern team-building strategies, offering a unique blend of motivation, unity, and cultural respect. Here are five epic ways to rally your team and harness the power of a war cry in your team-building efforts. If you’re looking for the best activities for events in India, then the Haka is one of them.


1. Craft a Unique Team War Cry

The first step in harnessing the power of a war cry for team building is to create one that resonates with your team’s identity and goals. This isn’t just about loud shouts; it’s about crafting a chant that encapsulates your team’s spirit, mission, and aspirations. Involve everyone in the creation process to ensure it truly represents your collective ethos. The act of creating and shouting this war cry together can significantly boost team morale and solidarity.

2. Incorporate Haka into Team Rituals

The haka, a traditional Maori war dance, is renowned for its intensity and unity. Adapting this for a corporate environment, albeit in a respectful and appropriate manner, can have a profound impact on team cohesion. Organize a haka team building workshop where your team learns and performs a haka together. This experience, rooted in deep respect for Maori culture, emphasizes unity, strength, and collective power, making it a potent team-building exercise.


3. Use War Cry for Celebrations and Milestones

Mark team achievements, milestones, or celebrations with your war cry. This reinforces a sense of achievement and collective success. Whether it’s completing a challenging project, reaching a sales target, or celebrating a team member’s achievement, rallying together with your war cry strengthens bonds and enhances a sense of shared accomplishment.

4. Begin Meetings with Your War Cry

Kick off meetings or team sessions with your war cry to energize the group and reinforce unity. This ritual can help shift mindsets from individual concerns to a team-focused perspective, ensuring everyone is aligned and motivated for the agenda ahead. It’s a powerful reminder of your shared goals and the collective strength available to achieve them.

5. Embrace the Spirit of the War Cry in Daily Operations

Beyond formal rituals or celebrations, integrate the spirit of your war cry and haka into daily operations. Encourage team members to support one another actively, work collaboratively, and face challenges with the collective strength and unity embodied in your war cry. This continuous reinforcement of team spirit and unity can transform your workplace culture, leading to higher engagement, better collaboration, and improved performance.

How do we create an activity to generate a war cry for team building?

haka war cry for team building in India

Gather Inspiration for the Slogan

We start by sharing examples of powerful chants, like the haka performed by New Zealand’s sports teams. Encourage our participants to think about words, phrases, or themes that resonate with them and reflect the team’s goals or spirit.

Brainstorm Together

We divide the conference attendees into small groups to brainstorm ideas for their war cry. Prompt them to consider their team’s identity, core values, and what they aim to achieve together. Each group should come up with a list of powerful, motivational words and phrases.

Craft the War Cry

We get each group select their favourite ideas and phrases from the brainstorming session to form the skeleton of their war cry. We guide them to create a short, rhythmic chant that’s easy to remember and repeat. Encouraging creativity in combining words to evoke emotion and unity of teamwork, or getting the team together. The slogans to motivate can also be crafted from famous team building quotes. 

Add Movements

We then introduce the concept of incorporating simple movements or gestures that complement the war cry. These movements should enhance the words, help convey the message, and encourage physical engagement. Each group practices their chant with the movements until it feels cohesive and energizing. 

In large group settings, we get straight to the movements rather than having teams come up with their own. 

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Perform and Share

We then conclude the session by having each group perform their war cry in front of the other attendees. Again, this battle cry is sometimes crafted in advance and therefore it is not an individual team performance but instead a common group performance.

This not only acts as a practice run but also fosters a sense of camaraderie and competition. Encourage applause, feedback, and possibly a friendly contest to vote for the most inspiring or energetic team building war cry.

Does this really help teams?

As a Conference Energizer

The haka or war cry is more of a conference energiser than real team building. This is not going to be a substitute for a VR based team building activity or a cricket team building activity. But you need to know that this is powerful as a way to get a rally together for a common cause. Start the financial year with a war cry or a battle cry to motivate your teams. 

As a Rally Call

Rather than for an organization, the haka or war cry is great for an entire division. For example, get your sales team to have their own haka or war cry. This becomes the call to action for everyone in the team. Celebrate milestones, wins and achievements by doing the war cry together. 

It will infuse great energy. 

War Cry As Team Building?

Only if you’re getting teams to craft their own haka, incorporate company phrases, perform as a team and compete with others . Anyone who tells you otherwise is just muddying the waters. But that doesn’t mean that having a war cry during a large conference is not a good idea. In fact, conferences with theatre seating, limited space and packed with agendas will benefit most with a haka styled team activity to liven things up.  

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Rupert Picardo Co-Founder
Rupert Picardo is a TEDx Speaker, Serial Entrepreneur and creator of Gamified Digital Experiences for Employee Engagement and Employee Onboarding.
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