Last week on a rainy Tuesday morning, 35 Novo Nordisk employees were gathering for a 2-hour team building event. Ah, team building. It can be like nails on a chalkboard. Some people look at it as a break from their daily routine, while others look at it as a complete waste of time. Together you get a group of people showing up with a filter of predispositions and a word that has ignited them all!
Little did they know, what they were actually going to be doing that day was much more experiential. From the very beginning of this 2 hour escapade there was an immediate nose dive from the expected as participants were challenged to become aware of the small opportunities that surround them on a daily basis.
This limbo had only started as they played a little game we like to call “Who are you?” Participants were challenged to communicate in terms that bypass surface levels of communication and unveil the very core beliefs of who we are. Not only was this a great discovery of the people that surround them on a day to day basis, but this was also a rediscovery of one’s self.
And just when you thought it could not get anymore profound, these 35 individuals were going to receive their greatest challenge yet. Build sandals.
300 million people in this world do not own shoes. We believe that number should be zero. Putting the possibility of change in the hands of these Novo Nordisk employees, they, as teams, built sandals from recycled conveyer belts and nylon lace.
The sandals are designed to be extremely durable, so building them is no easy task. The frustration set in, but it did not discourage anyone from completing their task. Why? Because the challenge that sat right in front of them was going to be on a child’s feet in a few weeks. They were literally transforming the lives of others by transforming this challenge into a positive outcome.
By the end of the event 70 sandals had been assembled. More importantly, the impact these participants created that day also created a touchstone to the awareness of the opportunities that surround us everyday.
What first may seem as a frustration, a challenge, or a problem, could very well be transformed into a means of radical impact.
What opportunities are surrounding you right now?