In the majority of companies, receiving an email from the managers with the subject line “Team-building day” will be met with stifled groans around the office. But imagine if your team-building day involved standing at the top of the Mount Snowdon, looking down over unparalleled mountain views, knowing that you’d ascended 3,500m in a single weekend? That beats a day of strategy planning in your local, cheap hotel conference room, we think.
Corporate challenges and team activities have been given a bad name. This is because managers and corporations make them feel too much like another day at the office. But, rest assured, not all corporate challenges need to involve buzzwords like “strategy”, “progress” and how we can all work “better together”. In fact, corporate challenges should be just one thing: fun. There’s nothing more fun to us than raising money for a good cause and giving back. Read on to find out how you can get out of the board room and make a real difference to the society and to your company through team away-days.
What are the benefits of team-building challenges?
The clue is in the name here: team-building. A happy, tightly-knit workforce is absolutely key to a productive workplace. Nothing in the company will ever be done to the best quality if colleagues aren’t communicating and pulling together to solve common problems. We all know that you feel much happier going into work on a Monday morning when you have made your colleagues into friends and you can’t wait to have a natter about your weekends in the office kitchen.
Sharing the physical and mental demands of a challenge together enables a work team to bond together. It builds lasting friendships through the shared experience. Also, it cements existing relationships between colleagues as well as build brand new ones. Particularly in large companies, corporate challenges provide the opportunity for friendships to bloom across different departments. Team members get the chance to speak to people outside of their immediate, day-to-day team.
But it’s not just about creating memories and making new colleagues, the benefits of corporate team-building really are endless. In fact, last year Forbes called team-building “the most important investment you’ll make”. Many of the skills that colleagues use during a corporate challenge can be directly used in the workplace, too. For example, the ability to:
- Identify objectives and goals
- Problem solve
- Listen to other team members
- Communicate effectively with each other
- Lead a team and build confidence
- Rationalise processes in order to accomplish an objective
- Help others and give back to society
What kind of corporate challenges are best?
In order to reap all of the above benefits, a company needs to pick the right corporate challenge. There’s plenty of research to show that giving back to people in need promotes self-growth and positive feelings. So why not make your away-day all about fundraising? Corporate challenges are a fantastic way for companies to be socially responsible. Also, it builds links with the local community and raises money and awareness for causes that really need it. Everybody in a team can get something out of thinking for others. Moreover, it’s likely that everyone will have a charity which is close to their hearts.
Here’s an idea! Ask all of your team members to write their favourite charity on a piece of paper and put all of the names in a hat. Across the year, each corporate challenge could fundraise money for one or multiple of the chosen charities. Everyone in the team will get maximum value and feel connected to the fundraising.
Physical challenges are a popular way for corporations to fundraise money for charity. It tests your limits – and it’s a known fact that you’re much more likely to receive donations when you’re pushing yourselves and doing something out of the ordinary.
How can you involve your company?
If you’re a manager and you know that organising a team event is something that would fall straight to the bottom of your hectic to-do list, you don’t need to do it alone. Challenge Central is a passionate and enthusiastic company who organise a range of trekking, cycling and bespoke events for a huge number of corporations. Some of their most popular corporate challenges include the London to Paris Cycle, National 3 Peaks Challenge, London to Amsterdam Cycle and Yorkshire 3 Peaks Challenge.
“Completing this challenge means so much for me. I came to exercise late but I feel ready to try everything now. It’s been a hugely empowering experience.” – Catherine, London to Paris Cycle September 2016
Imagine embarking on a weekend adventure with your team and spending three days cycling through glorious French countryside, ending up in one of the world’s most romantic cities. If walking is more your thing, picture walking 24 miles across beautiful Yorkshire countryside to conquer the three highest peaks in the Yorkshire Dales in a single day. If you’re an adventurous team, you can choose to go even further afield and take part in a cycling tour of Thailand; gliding along the quiet roads past plantations, rice fields, temple sites and tropical jungles – in between stopping to sample some authentic Thai food, of course.
These challenges will be fantastic, life-changing experiences for any team. And not only that – raising money for charity at the same time you’ll be making a huge difference to the lives of others. To us, that’s the most fun corporate challenge you could possibly have!
“It was a momentous adventure, the Three Peaks Challenge has given me confidence and motivation.” – Pramila, Three Peaks Challenge September 2016
Also, at Challenge Centrals, you can modify any cycling and trekking adventure to suit your company’s requirements. Just simply get in touch if you’d like a change of itinerary, starting location and duration. For more information about Challenge Central and their events, please visit them at www.challengecentral.co.uk.
What about fundraising?
If you’re keen for your company to raise as much money for charity as possible, then sign up to GoRaise. With GoRaise, you can enjoy free fundraising every time your company and employees shop online. A percentage of every purchase you make will be donated to your cause. The retailer will cover all of the cost. Find out how quick and easy fundraising can be at https://www.goraise.co.uk/for-companies.
Get some inspiration by some of the amazing companies who are already fundraising using GoRaise:
- Ignite100 are raising money for Alzheimer’s Research UK. They book all of their company hotel stays and train tickets online and say they’re “loving the fact we are starting to see the donations rack up”.
- Northstar Ventures are helping Northstar Foundation whenever they shop online. They are supporting entrepreneurship and social enterprises that benefit excluded and deprived communities in the North East of England.
- Agile Pixel are a web design and development agency helping to kick cancer’s butt. And they’re sending a donation to Cancer Research UK every single time the company buys something online.
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