Monday, 10 October 2011

Corporate Team Building events in the Lake District. Tuesday October 4th 2011.

On Tuesday October 4th, Kendal Mountaineering Services ran a corporate team building event for clients from GEN II Training Ltd.

GEN II work in partnership with a number of UK industries to recruit and train apprentices for those industries. Kendal Mountaineering Services has already been involved with the induction programmes for the Nucleargraduates Scheme run by GEN II and pretty much everyone in photo one has attended one of our ghyll scrambling & canyoning session as part of their induction.

We were asked by GEN II to put together a one day corporate event to focus on teamwork, leadership and communication skills where there would be three separate teams with an element of competition between those teams. Iain put together a proposal which involved a lake cluefind session on Derwentwater (the client had specified a water activity as part of the proposal), standalones, rock climbing and the building of a Tyrolean traverse. Each team would be required to complete all four tasks during the course of the day starting with the lake canoe cluefind.

So, starting at 10am, the teams headed out on to Derwentwater to commence the first task - basically a water based orienteering event. Each team consisted of a pair of rafted canadian canoes carrying 12 people. Each group had a map showing locations of clues which they then had to find and bring back a pair of letters located at each point to gain points. Penalties were incurred for clues not found and for being late back - we were on a tight schedule!

After lunch at 12 each team set off on the afternoon "round robin" of team tasks that had been set out for them on the area. Photo two shows one team engaged with problem solving at the standalones. There were five tasks set up here for each team to choose three from these. Each task involved a brief outlining what was to be achieved and what equipment was available. There were constraints and penalties for failure to comply with the brief and failure to keep to time.

These tasks were designed to get people working together as part of a team, to actively partake in discussions intended to arrive at a shared understanding of what was to be achieved at each task with individuals understanding their part in achieving success. At the end of each task there was a short review from which indiviuals were intended to "take way" learning points from that task in order that they could be applied to the next task and within their workplace. Each task was expected to take no more than 20 minutes (an hour for three) and points gained from here were added towards each groups final total.

Photo three shows one of the teams at the site of the Tyrolean Traverse over Watendlath Beck. The Tyrolean had been part rigged by the attendant technician who was in charge of safety during this task. With the aid of a diagram, each team was expected to tension the tyrolean ropes to a stage where all team members could be successfully transported across the gorge which the Tyrolean spanned.

In this photo, a team member crosses the gorge suspended from the Tyrolean whilst the rest of the team look on. Points were gained for each team member successfully completing a crossing. As well as having to work together to rig the Tyrolean there was certainly an element of reacting to challenge here as the ropeway spanned a precipitous secion of the gorge with a large waterfall crashing down a drop directly below.

Photo four shows one delegate attached to the Tyrolean rig prior to crossing the gorge and the photo was taken to show the complexity of the rigging and equipment required to make it all work.

The chap in the picture has joined the GEN II Nucleargraduate programme and so has already reached a high standard in their education. At the end of the two year apprenticeship with GEN II all apprentices will be taking up posts within the UK nuclear industry and may well find themselves in situations where they are presented with instructions and a range of unfamiliar equipment - and then be expected to build something or make something work.

This task involved the use of pulleys, Jumars and various other bits of equipment and systems that would be unfamilair to most of these graduate apprentices. However, with minimal assistance from the technician, each team managed to rig and run a successful Tyrolean session. Well done!

The fourth photograph from the GEN II Corporate teambuilding event shows a team at Upper Shepherds crag not far from the location of the Tyrolean venue.

Here, each team member was required to attempt rock climbing in order to gain further points for their team and the higher they climbed, the more points they earned. Other team members were expected to support, encourage and maintain the safety of those climbing whilst learning the new ropework skill of belaying.

For the rock climbing, each team of twelve was subdivided into teams of four - one person climbing, one person belaying and two people tailing ie holding on to the dead rope whilst the climber climbed.

Climbing was very challenging for some members of each team and being lowered back down in the abseiling position by their colleagues more challenging still!

At the end of the afternoon all teams reconvened at our venue - the Lodore Falls Hotel where they were expected to give a five minute presentation with regards to what they had learned during the day with respect to teamwork, leadership, communication, trust and support.

Everyone thoroughly enjoyed their teambuilding event with us. It had been a physically demanding day and undoubtedly challenging for every team member at some point throughout the day, However, everyone will go away with a better understanding of the value of efficient team work and how communication and good planning can go together to make for the successful completion of a task within or outwith the workplace.

We would like to thank GEN II for the opportunity to organise and run this corporate event for them. Also worthy of a mention are John & Sarah of Platty+ who provided the canoes & safety cover for the lake cluefind and the Lodore Falls Hotel for providing an excellent venue on Borrowdale in The Lake District from where we were able to run this event.

If you are looking for a teambuilding event or an event with a difference then we at Kendal Mountaineering services can organise this for you. As well as the many outdoor activities and skills training courses we offer we are more than happy to put together a corporate package if you would like a well organised and challenging day out for your clients or staff that will be fun but may have an educational or teambuilding theme. Contact us to arrange your bespoke event.

Other photographs from the GEN II Teambuilding Event can be viewed here.

No comments: