Team-building has become a major part of our business at Swazi Trails and over the years we’ve had the privilege of working with many teams of individuals from companies and organisations, both big and small. Whilst our aim is to facilitate events and insights that are inspiring and boost team performance and morale, we ourselves often come away from these interactions walking taller after being inspired by the very clients we are providing services to.
Just recently we provided a teambuild for the New Hope Centre from Bethany, here in Swaziland. The New Hope Centre was founded in 2002 by Rev. June McKinney and Dr. Elizabeth Hynd. Their mission is to:
provide a permanent home for orphaned and abandoned children in Swaziland, and to raise these children with love, education and a Biblical foundation, so that they are ready to lead Swaziland out of these difficult times and into a bright future.
So we got to spend a full day working with this group, which was made up of both management, teachers and care-givers. We provided a customised version of our favourite teambuild – Communication is the Name of the Game for them. During this time we, as facilitators, got to hear about the extremely valuable work they do within our community. It was a humbling experience.
One thing that stood out was their acceptance and stoical absorption of the results of the various challenges. One of the insights that we like to build into these sessions is the point that “life is not fair” and it doesn’t help to whinge about it. Often we find individuals on teams that are prone to complain about equality or fairness, a tendency brought on by the competitiveness of the challenges. Our ears are always open to catch even the slightest hint of this, as its a point we like to ram home. Life is certainly not fair, your boss might not be fair, your colleagues or competitors may not be fair either, but there ain’t no benefit in whinging about it. Such negativity is a poison to teams that seek a higher level of performance. We keep a dummy (yeah – the type one gives to a baby) handy to pass out as a poignant reminder to the complainers.
Seldom do we reach the end of the day without some opportunity to hand the dummy out. It was therefore a rare occasion that we started summing up in the late afternoon with Team New Hope… and the dummy was still in facilitator Darron Raw’s pocket.
Darron said he came away from the experience pretty certain that this was a team that knew in graphic detail the sad truth that life is REALLY not fair. However, he was also more than certain that they had a steadfast belief that they could do something about it – and to him that was inspiring.
If you would like to hear more about the work that the New Hope Centre does please visit: http://www.newhopeswaziland.com/default.asp