A wheelie good team build
Charitable giving is a large part of the Simplyhealth ethos, so it was no surprise when the whole of our marketing team recently gathered for a team building day that our activity would be to the benefit of a charity.
Led by the team at O3e a company that specialises in charitable team building activities, we were set with the task of building bicycles. From the get go it was clear that very few of us had any actual experience building bikes, and our
excitement for the project was also tinged with a hint of trepidation. Especially when we learned that the bikes we'd be building were being donated to children. We were quickly put at ease, however, when we were told that the bikes would be
thoroughly inspected and need to pass an MOT (similar to that of a car) before being given away. Additionally O3e's engineers would be on hand to help us along the way.
We were divided into eight groups of 6-8 members and set about naming our teams. There were some real gems among the team names such as Wheel be Fine, Bumpy Road, Five Alive, and Cylcopaths.
Once the important naming business was out of the way we assembled ourselves around tables containing various components of the bikes we'd be putting together. It was clear that it wouldn't be as simple as clicking a few parts in place.
Before we could start assembling anything we each had to attend a different knowledge session pertaining to a different section of the bike, ie wheels or brakes. Once we'd attended our sessions we reconvened to share our knowledge and agree a project plan. From there we began putting our bikes together. As everyone had a different area of expertise, it gave us all a chance to contribute equally and work alongside the others.
One of the best parts of this activity was the lack of competition. The reward in the activity was not to beat another team, but to create something of value for someone who needs it. About halfway through the day we were visited by Kate from the NSPCC who told that the bikes would be supporting the `Help' campaign, an initiative from Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board (BSCB) and the NSPCC to help prevent child neglect in Birmingham. The campaign encourages people to put aside their concerns that they might be making a mistake and seek help and advice straight away if they are worried about a child, before the situation becomes serious.
The bikes were to be given away during a number of free prize draws taking play at `Family Fun Days' in deprived communities across Birmingham. As well as giving families the opportunity to take part in an exciting day out where they could engage in family friendly activities, the Fun Days also allowed professionals to engage with parents about the issue of neglect.
After three hours of work the bikes were complete and all of them passed their MOT tests (well done us!). In addition to building the bikes we also took part in various challenges that gave us the chance to win `money' that we could spend kitting out the bikes with various accessories, from helmets and bags to colourful pedals and wheel spoke decorations. By the time we were done the bikes looked fantastic.
It was clear as we wound down for the day that the activity had been an all-around success. Many members of our marketing team expressed how much they enjoyed both the activity and the purpose behind it. Being able to come together and create something while doing good for the community was an exceptional way to spend the day.
To learn more about O3e and their charitable team building programs please visit: http://www.o3e.co.uk/
To learn more about the Help campaign and the NSPCC vist: http://www.nspcc.org.uk/fighting-for-childhood/news-opinion/neglect-campaign-birmingham/