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Self-management in the modern workplace

Self-management came back on the agenda when the corona pandemic hit the world. In Denmark, we felt the consequences when the country went into lockdown in March 2020. Many Danish workplaces had to send their employees home, and it was especially employees with a daily life behind a desk who now had to practice self-management. In this blog post on self-management, we'll dive deeper into what self-management is, how Mystery Makers can help create self-managing teams, and also explore whether self-management works in practice in the workplace - and if so, what pitfalls to be aware of. Our skilled team coaches at Mystery Makers have more than 10 years of experience observing top Danish businesses in our Escape Rooms, which is why we know how the strongest and most effective teams work together to solve complex problems.

What is self-management?

Let's start by looking at what self-management actually is and how it is used in Danish workplaces. In general, self-management is an approach where employees take responsibility for their own tasks, make decisions and control their own work process. Self-management involves a high degree of autonomy and independence, where employees are highly motivated to take initiative, show responsibility and be proactive in their work. It also involves the ability to prioritise, organise and evaluate your own performance, as well as being self-motivated and able to work independently with minimal external control. Essentially, it's about creating a work environment where the employee largely "minds their own business" - both in the open plan office and in the home office.

Why is self-management important? 

Self-management has many benefits that can lead to more motivated employees and greater efficiency. That's why we've put together a series of points below to help you learn more about how you can apply and greatly benefit from self-management in your workplace. We want to explore why self-management is important and also why it can be a strength in the workplace. 

How do you create self-management in practice?

Self-management provides increased autonomy and responsibility

Self-management gives employees greater autonomy and responsibility for their own work tasks. This can help increase motivation, engagement and job satisfaction as employees feel more involved and have more influence over their work.

Self-management creates higher productivity and efficiency

When employees are empowered to make decisions and take responsibility for their work, it can lead to increased productivity and efficiency. Self-management allows for faster decision-making, flexibility and adaptability, which can result in better business results.

Self-management gives way to enhanced innovation and creativity

Self-management creates an environment where employees are encouraged to think creatively and also come up with new ideas and solutions. By giving employees the freedom to express their creativity and explore innovative approaches, the organisation can benefit from their unique perspectives and contributions.

Self-management reduces the need for micromanagement

When employees are able to manage themselves, there is less need for micro-management and constant monitoring from the manager. This frees up time and resources for both employees and managers to focus on more strategic tasks and development initiatives.

Self-management creates skills development and growth 

Self-management allows employees to develop and refine their competences. When they take responsibility for their own learning and development, they can acquire new skills, challenge themselves and grow professionally.

How do you create a self-managing team? 

It seems that self-management is in many ways the way forward in modern Danish workplaces, but how can you as a workplace help create a self-managing team? We offer some advice on how to do this below.


Define clear goals and expectations for the team so everyone is on the same page and knows what needs to be achieved. 


Build a trusting work environment where employees feel comfortable making decisions and taking responsibility. 


Create a culture of open communication where team members are encouraged to express their ideas, give feedback and solve problems together. 


Create a learning-orientated culture where employees are encouraged to develop their skills and grow professionally. Offer opportunities for training, mentoring or knowledge sharing within the team. 

Mystery Makers can help you with self-management 

For many, self-management can promote employee engagement, creativity and efficiency. It can also create a more dynamic and flexible workplace where employees can feel more freedom with responsibility. At Mystery Makers, we can identify your team's individual strengths and help you become a self-managing team with our Team Development programme. Contact us today and let's have a no-obligation chat about how a day of Team Development can empower you!

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5 tips for being a winning team

5 tips

Here are 5 tips for being a winning team

What is your superpower when collaborating with your team? And what are your colleagues' superpowers? Read more about this below, where we will give you advice on how to optimise your teamwork and become a high performance team. In addition, at the bottom of the page you can find articles with inspiration for the same.

Just before you and your team step into one of our Mystery Rooms for your team development, you'll be introduced to our 5 tips for being a winning team. These tips are designed to give you an insight into how to become a high-performing team. The purpose of your team development day with us is to turn you into effective teams. On a day like this, there are plenty of development opportunities, and we'll guide you through them to become high performing groups and teams. 

Each of you decide what you think your superpower will be based on the five tips. Are you best at being Curious about the task, thinking out loud, keeping track of the many clues, being a motivating colleague, or keeping the spirit high?

In collaboration with behavioural experts, we have created the 5 tips based on observations of 10,000 professional teams in our Mystery Room game. We compared our observations with research on the collaborative dynamics of high performance teams. It turns out that these five things characterise high performance teams in Mystery Room as well as in real-life workplaces.

The really interesting thing about these 5 tips is that you often misplace yourself. In a Mystery Room, you are put in a setting where the usual workflows and hierarchy break down - it's in these golden minutes that you really get to know each other.

Below we elaborate on our 5 tips to prepare you for your team development day at Mystery Makers.

1: Be curious

This type of person is preoccupied with defining the problem at hand and immediately sets about using reflexivity and thought patterns to search for relevant information to solve the task. This will often be the person who takes the lead and takes the driver's seat. For this person, it's all about gathering as much information as possible from the start, and curiosity is at the top of their list. Every nook and cranny is explored, and then time and resources can be devoted to creating an overview using appreciative process exercises. This type of person pushes a task into action. 


2: Think out loud

This type of person is very concerned with knowledge sharing and focuses on ensuring that all information and knowledge is communicated so that cross-collaboration occurs. This persona will often ask themselves: What is good collaboration? And along the way, will make sure to find the answer to this. This type of person will often keep track of whether the relevant knowledge has been shared, whether everyone has been heard and whether the necessary feedback has been given - this strengthens teamwork. This is often the person who gently lowers their arm towards the handbrake in an attempt to get all challenges and ideas heard. This type of person ensures that everyone is on board with the task at hand and that everyone's challenges and ideas are heard.

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3: Stay organised

This type of person keeps a clear overview to the best of their ability and is keen to ensure that everything that has been found is put in order so that none of the important knowledge is lost. This type of person wants to set the right framework for a self-governing team. This is also the same type of person who makes sure to keep an overview of the entire process and wants to better understand how the team found its way to the goal in order to become a high-performing team. This type of person keeps track of everything and is very concerned about following the definition of team structure.

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4: Keep going

This type of persona is worth its weight in gold when you feel like you've hit a concrete wall, and they help to ensure the retention of all employees. It's in these situations where this persona breaks in and motivates the team to keep going. This person asks themselves: What retains employees? And the answer for this persona is often the right motivation. They don't give up easily and happily throw themselves into the pursuit of the many clues - it's work retention that drives this persona. This persona keeps the team constantly testing ideas and solutions - even when it all seems overwhelming. 

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5: Have fun

This type of person is good at celebrating the small victories and brings a huge fighting spirit. Their high spirits motivate the team to believe in themselves. This persona type is the one who makes the appreciative remarks, a pat on the back or a high-five when you finally solve the puzzle. In addition to the victories, this persona is also aware of reflecting on what went wrong along the way in an attempt to learn from the mistakes. This personality type is mindful of their fellow players' feelings and makes sure that everyone has fun while learning from the experience. It is important for this personality type to remain as well-functioning groups and teams.

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We want to share our knowledge about high performance teams with you

To be best prepared for a day of Team Development at MysteryMakers, we recommend first and foremost that you familiarise yourself with the above 5 tips for being a winning team. In addition, we'd like to share a series of articles with you that you can dive into during the coffee break, at the next team meeting or in the armchair on a homeworking day. They'll be here and we'll update it regularly: 

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Skills development

Skills development in the workplace

Skills development in the workplace is crucial to ensure that employees don't get stuck in the same rut, so it's time to strengthen internal skills development. The trivialities of everyday life are welcome, but if an employee is to maintain their interest in the usual work tasks, it requires that both their professional and personal competences are challenged from time to time - and that's where Mystery Makers can help. In our experience, both personal and professional competences come into play when you come to us for team development. Both are important for a balanced work life, and our Team Development programme is all about developing the skills you already possess. They can be hard to spot, but when you get a fresh and observant pair of eyes, you'll realise that the need for skills development might be exactly what you're missing in your workplace. 

Shift focus from competences with strategic competency development 

What do we mean by that? We'll tell you. At Mystery Makers, we're not results-orientated, and for us, there's no right or wrong answer when it comes to competence development. We're actually more concerned with how you get there. That's why the focus needs to shift away from competences and towards the specific tasks you're given. It's not about learning new competences, it's about strengthening the ones you already have. Our competency development is strategically designed to challenge and strengthen your personal and professional competences. Our strategy is called learning through play, and it almost goes without saying what that means. Play is at the centre of the learning you will receive. 

Skills development for business is an investment in the future 

Employee skills development requires an investment in both time and resources, but it can have a significant positive impact on your organisation, your team and the overall wellbeing of the workplace. With the right skills development, employees will feel more engaged, productive and satisfied in the workplace, which can hopefully lead to better results for the organisation as a whole. Providing space to get to know each other outside the four walls of the office and within four walls that are definitely not what they seem is also a great way to strengthen the social bond.

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Skills clarification

Skills clarification is a key ingredient 

In its simplest form, competency mapping is about identifying the different competences that a group of people in a team possess. This is done in order to assess where there are strengths and weaknesses in the group and where action should be taken. There are many different types of competency mapping. It could be via competency mapping, a competency chart or a competency model. At Mystery Makers, we take a slightly different approach, which you can read more about below. 

A mapping of competences on the back end

We've said it before, but a good point doesn't hurt to be repeated. We're not results-orientated, we're interested in the journey to get there. That's why we haven't prepared a mapping of competences that you need to meet to win the game we're asking you to play. And with that said, it's still a truth with modifications. Prior to your visit, you will be introduced to our Five tips for being a winning team. However, it is not a set of competences that each of you must live up to in order to be successful in our eyes. It is a set of guidelines for a type of team that, in our experience, works very well together. In all likelihood, the five competences will be represented on your team, and it is our joint task to ensure that they are strengthened.

You create your own competence mapping 

As we mentioned earlier, we haven't mapped competency mapping. This is because competency mapping can involve many different methods, and for us, the most important thing is that through this mapping you learn to strengthen your collaboration. You will automatically show us what competences you possess when the game starts, and that's how it should be. That way, your behaviour is not fixed by a schedule or rehearsed in advance. It's raw, and that's how we like it! To best help you, we want you to be completely honest in your behaviour. It's not about exposing your strengths and weaknesses, but rather focusing on the different observations we make to strengthen your internal collaboration. 

We therefore conduct a thorough mapping of the competences you have shown us. The purpose of this competency mapping is to create a clear picture of the competences that are available in your team and that can help you achieve certain goals or tasks. Skills mapping can be useful in many different contexts, and our primary task is to strengthen your skills so that you can take them back to the open office community and strengthen your cross-functional collaboration.

Skills clarification is for everyone 

At Mystery Makers, we are both good at and happy to help companies strengthen their collaboration, and we do this with our customised Team Development. And precisely Development is important to emphasise in this context. We know that for some people it can be a bit overwhelming to have their competences mapped in this way, but it's important for us to emphasise that we don't want to put you on display, nor do we have any expectations that you're perfect. We want you to see a day with Team Development as a special opportunity to Develop yourselves. Everyone has a development potential deep down, and we want to bring it out into the light and show it to you. 

Team development at Mystery Makers

If you want to learn more about team development at Mystery Makers, please contact us. 

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Why team development at MysteryMakers?

Mystery Makers use learning through play 

Fun team exercises are designed to help your team identify and solve problems, improve communication and collaboration, strengthen relationships and increase team motivation and engagement. A day of team development takes place in one of our Mystery Rooms, which you can read more about below.

Achieve better group dynamics in the workplace

At Mystery Makers, we use play as a tool and more specifically gamification as a method to improve group dynamics. We believe that one's true I emerges through play. We want to explore what happens when we put a team into a playful space - our experience shows that it has a pretty good outcome in terms of creating the right team development. Below you'll read much more about why we believe you should choose to come to Mystery Makers for team development. Because it's not what you might think.

We create team dynamics with psychological safety 

Our team coaches have observed thousands of professional teams in our Mystery Room. They are experienced in finding and visualising team superpowers. They work with recognised theories and principles within group dynamics, organisational psychology and collaboration optimisation. The aim is to give you and your team a common starting point and language for good co-operation. Our team coaches are highly inspired by the Big Five, also known as the Five Factor Model. As the name reveals, it consists of five different main factors that help characterise people. They are Robustness, Extroversion, Openness to new things, Friendliness and Conscientiousness. The Big Five model is one of the most recognised and comprehensive theories of personality traits and has been used in research in behaviour, cognition, work and organisational psychology and clinical psychology. You can read more about it by clicking here, where we explain in more detail what it's all about.

Team development should be playful and fun

Play is our first and common language. Play creates a risk-free space where we can test and experiment with wild ideas that are free from the consequences of reality. Play shows us that we can laugh at our mistakes; it's just something we do. Play creates new relationships across everyday hierarchies. Play stimulates our curiosity and makes us wiser about the world and the people around us. Don't worry - you won't be tested on your maths or numeracy skills, and there are no shock effects or physical exertion. To make it a successful day, you just need to be curious and willing to collaborate with your team. We work to reinforce your team culture.

What is team culture? 

First and foremost, team culture refers to the norms, values, behaviours and expectations that exist within a group or team. It's the way the team functions, collaborates, communicates and makes decisions. A healthy and productive team culture encourages collaboration and communication, fosters creativity and innovation, and helps build trust and respect among team members. A strong team culture can help increase productivity, improve work quality and create a positive and supportive workplace. We want to promote all of this with our team development, and it's these things that we observe when we put you in our Mystery Room.

Become a high-performing team with Mystery Makers

If you'd like to learn more about how you can have a team development day at Mystery Makers, please contact us. We're ready to have a no-obligation chat about how we can help you become a high-performing team. Fill out this contact form - and we'll take a look. 

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Mystery Makers
Grønningen 15
1270 Copenhagen K
CVR NO. 36 91 29 01