Most of us have participated in some form of team building during our professional careers. You know how it works… You go off for a day or even a weekend with a group of fellow employees. You perform an assignment or two that will challenge your ability to work together. You all remember your favorite. One friend remembered his team building a boat that never did float. Well, you leave the team building event a little fatter, a little closer to your contemporaries, and you leave behind, the product of your endeavors, a boat that won’t float.
Now, envision this Cargill team building exercise… Twenty-five up-and-coming Cargill junior executives arrived in the middle of nowhere; in a place we call the PromiseLand located in northwest Poland. They didn’t know each other, and hailed from homes in China, Switzerland, Brazil, Spain, Russia, Egypt, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, UK, South Africa, Hungary and Denmark. They were joined by a work group of 10 Polish Cargill employees from Warsaw.
The new arrivals were first introduced to each other, given 20,000 PLN to work with, and told to remodel 4 elementary school classrooms in two different schools located 20 km apart. Now, for the best part, they were given 30 hours to complete their projects and prepare two hand-over ribbon-cutting ceremonies, complete with refreshments, for the PromiseKids, teachers and parents. They had to fend for themselves in this unfamiliar country without the help of our Foundation’s staff or consulting mechanical engineers. They had to find their own supplies, raw materials, carpets, lighting fixtures, tools and paint. They had to arrange for their own transportation, meals, and schedules all from the money they were provided. They built their teams and succeeded in their tasks.
The first ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Nielep PromiseLand School was held on time at 1300 on Thursday afternoon. The second ribbon-cutting ceremony was held just on time at 1500 at the Nowe Worowo PromiseLand School. The team building experience meant so much to the Cargill trainees, the schools, teachers or kids.