A beautiful spring day in northern California proved to be a good omen when 106 Essex Property Trust accountants met at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport for a Bike-a-Thon Charity Workshop. The weather also provided a suitable backdrop for the joy of coming together as a team and donating to a great organization like the San Francisco Firefighters Toy Program. Here’s a quick look at how all the magic happened.
A Big Group Proves Easy to Manage
The accountants came in with a lot of energy and enthusiasm, just as management had told us they would when we consulted with them beforehand. Taking advantage of this influx of energy, we divided the group into several teams and got the workshop started quickly with a few of custom designed warm up activities.
The teams participated in these activities with the perfect blend of competitive spirit and camaraderie. And even though they came in pretty hyped up, you could watch them come together in a different sort of way as the workshop continued. By the time we reached the bike assembly phase, our facilitators could tell they’d planted a seed that would continue to grow.
The San Francisco Firefighters Toy Program Provided Extra Incentive
The Essex Property Trust management team had given us a very clear picture of the goals they wanted to achieve during their workshop. Among other things, they wanted us to help their team harness the group’s highly competitive spirit and transform into a more unified effort. We did this by devising a reward system for winning individual events and emphasizing the end goal of donating bikes to the San Francisco Firefighter’s Toy Program. We also structured the morning activities in a way that rewarded teamwork as opposed to individual efforts.
It was a combination of techniques that proved very successful. The ribbons we awarded for team victories during the warm up activities seemed to calm the group’s competitive juices into something more instructive while working toward the common good reinforced the importance of big picture thinking. In fact, it’s this very combination (albeit in a different form for each client) that makes our Charity Workshops effective for so many companies. They’re custom designed to be instructive and inspiring for the long term.
Needless to say, this was a wonderful day for everyone. Management was pleased with the progress they saw, the accountants had a lot of fun, and there were even two fire fighters on hand to accept 16 beautiful new bicycles on behalf of their organization and the children of the communities they never tire of serving.