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Get to know your team with some fun in Amsterdam

Getting to know the team. Photo: Fun Amsterdam

According to entrepreneur and Forbes magazine contributor Brian Scudamore, “team building is the most important investment you can make for your people.”

Team building not only builds trust, he says, but helps mitigate conflict, encourages communication and increases both collaboration and productivity, leading to more engaged employees and a better bottom line.

An increasingly popular and effective way do that is via team-building events, which take employees out of the office for some morale-boosting fun and comradery.

Enter FunAmsterdam, a tour and events company that has grown into one of the biggest corporate team-building activity providers in the nation’s capital.

Bilingual hosts

Whether you’re looking for events from 20 to 500 people, FunAmsterdam and its team of young, energetic and bilingual (Dutch and English) tour guides and hosts can accommodate you.

“With over 300 activities, everything is possible,” says FunAmsterdam co-owner Timo Haaker. In fact, “everything is possible” is the company motto.

Cocktail making to plastic fishing

Among the company’s hundreds of team-building activities, the most popular include cocktail-making workshops, murder mystery dinners, big party boats and treasure hunts.

Karaoke nights, cooking classes and pub quizzes also rank high.

Learn to mix your own. Photo: Fun Amsterdam

But there are also luxury private boat tours, which up the typical tourist canal cruise ante with professional hosts and skippers and drinks and food made to order. (Not a bad way to host an executive board meeting!)

Added bonus: All 10 luxury boats used in the city are 100% electric.

Giving back

In addition to maintaining a small carbon footprint, events such as plastic fishing will take you a step further towards your company’s sustainability goals as you and your work mates contribute to keeping the city’s fabled canals clean by fishing for plastic bottles. It’s a unique way to enjoy a canal cruise.

And for those looking to give back, there are charity events such as FunAmsterdam’s bike building donation, where your team will help build bikes under expert guidance that are then  donated to the city’s children.

Private party venue

But one of the biggest draws of FunAmsterdam is The Jungle Club, its private nightclub on the Amstel adjacent to Rembrandtplein in the city’s clubbing quarter. There you can throw your own party, where you can arrange anything from Karaoke to cocktail making to your own personal club night (even arriving by boat to the front door).

And this is where FunAmsterdam has the edge over its competitors.

By owning both the assets – The Jungle Club and its boats, for example – and the activities, FunAmsterdam is able to control every event’s cost and quality.

“We’re a booking agency and tour operator rolled into one,” says Haaker, “so there are no typical middleman fees.” 

Cruise in comfort. Photo: Starboard Boats

Now’s the time

Post-Covid, employees are desperate to reconnect. According to a recent survey, some 9 out of 10 UK workers say they would enjoy their workplace more if team-building events took place more often. (Haaker’s The Fun Group, of which FunAmsterdam is one of seven subsidiaries, also owns a tourism company in London.)

It’s a statistic that holds in Amsterdam, too.

“After Covid, people want to do fun things again,” says Haaker. “We really exploded after Covid.”

This born and bred Amsterdammer, who started his first events company at the age of 16, says Amsterdam is the natural place for him to work and share his love of the city. “We grew up here. It’s our city. It’s the best city in the world.”

So, if you’re looking to put your team-building budget to good use, as both A-list corporations and small businesses do, contact FunAmsterdam for a list of their best activities.

Haaker practices what he preaches. “After every team-building season, we book a party boat for 200 of our own staff and host our own event,” he says. “It’s not only fun, but we see better results for our company.”

An investment well worth it indeed.

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