A busy summer…

Autumn seems to have arrived with some force and it’s prompted reflection on what’s been a very busy summer for us.

It’s mostly been about our Property Trading Game which we’ve run six times with the teams from Crossrail – everyone from Senior Managers to the Apprentices (that said it does help one of our partners is in the OD team!), once with the global marketing team from Dollar Financial (thanks to VP Digital Marketing David Henry for that one) and finally our ‘there is such a thing as a free lunch’ open day – where 15 brave volunteers came and played on what must have been one of the hottest days of the summer.

A good time was had by all it seemed and apart from some tired feet there’s been some superb reflection and discussion in the post-game sessions we’ve been part of.

So apart from a little light trumpet blowing that’s it apart from sharing two of our favourite pictures from our busy summer. The first from the Open Day where the team chose the ‘Ascent of Man’ for their inventive team picture



And the second from early September where one of the teams from Dollar Financial invented a new performance art – tube ballet, which they demonstrated to a packed rush hour metropolitan line tube. Our only challenge after that event is the lady from Finland who wants to play the game with her team – may have to be our portable version ‘Bid the Grid’!



Hope you all had a good summer and remember to give us a shout if you have a team build at risk of being boring!


They came, they saw, they played…

So we planned a demo day. The idea was to get a group of people out to play our Property Trading Game and get some fun and networking thrown in too. The original invite is here so feel free to read it.

The demo day was yesterday and 8 brave souls duly turned up in London without much idea of what the day would hold and thanks to them all for playing with such enthusiasm and commitment.

Without going into step by step detail the day seemed to really work – taking a group of people some of whom knew each other in real life, some through Twitter and some not at all and letting them play was such a great experience and one dare we say it we may repeat. We finished at 4.15pm in a pub in the West End and when dinner finished at 7pm people were still talking about the day and the game which has to be said left smiles on faces.

Some great feedback for us on the game itself, how we could sell it better and differently and hopefully a few interested parties who can now see how a product like our Property Trading Game could fit into what they do but all in all a great fun day which left people seemingly knackered but energised. We think that’s job done!

Some photos from the ‘car’ team below, ‘boot’ team to follow when someone sends them over

The car team do their “inventive team picture” (we think they were inventing bikes)

Next came the artistic team picture (spot the ass)

and not forgetting a picture of the team in a phone box (business cards were NOT collected!)

And as for the ‘boot’ team, they crammed into a phone box too….

Attempted an artistic picture (not sure if they saw no evil!!)

and even accosted a celebrity for 300 points (although we may need reminded who he is…)

One of the participants (@Changecontinuum) has written 4 blog posts following his reflections on the day that can be found here:

The one where the “Boot” was on the other foot – Part 1 “The Roles we Play”

The one where the “Boot” was on the other foot – Part2 “The Way we think”

The one where the “Boot” was on the other foot – Part 3 “The Way we Act”

The one where the “Boot was on the other foot – Part 4 “The Art of Giving”

Another (@kateGL) has written another post you can find here:

Winning Ways

Gaming with the Gamers

On Friday we had a great day. A great day that required a weekend of recovery but a great day none the less.

We’d been asked by the Director of Gaming for Betfair to run a team day for his senior team and the day started in the most civilized way with breakfast at Soho House:

(We recommend the sausage sandwiches)

We then spent the morning doing Belbin with some interesting and entertaining results before jumping in taxis to get to the start positions for an afternoon spent playing our Property Trading Game…

Without giving the game away we felt we had to share this photo of one of the teams attempting to gain some points with their inventive photo that involved them all planking (well kind of) on the bollards at Trafalgar Square:

The team seemed to have a great day (we are fingers crossed for some great feedback and you never know maybe a testamonial) and they ended up drinking cocktails and having dinner whilst we snuck off for tea and peppermint foot lotion!!

It was certainly interesting being the people running a game with a team who manage games for a living and we didn’t have the knowledge to argue when one team member predicted (rightly) that they were 1.64 odds on to win…

Despite the November weather the day was a blast and one group definitely benefitted and that was the British Legion as the poppies were out with pride and more than one collection box felt the benefit of the team’s exuberance. This scene in one of the pools at Trafalgar Square seemed worthy of capture whilst the team recovered from their inventiveness

If you can’t stand the heat….

Don’t run an exercise in Hong Kong in August…

The week so far has been very different from normal in that we’ve been running our Property Trading game for a corporate client in Hong Kong. Without giving too much away the game is designed to get everyone running around a location (we have London, HK & New York) absorbing them in an activity that helps them forget to “perform” for the sake of the training and stimulates them get stuck in and “behave” in a way to help them, their colleagues and the facilitators understand how they play as part of a team.

As the person facilitating the game it’s a blast, you get to be observer and occasional prompt to one of the teams whilst keeping in contact (through surruptitious texts to your fellow facilitator) with the other team and their progress. This game is without doubt our most popular (so far) and having had the opportunity to run it hands on several occasions is a great experience for all involved. Unless….

Unless, it’s 32 degrees celsius, about 80% humidity and the power of right guard is not holding. It’s safe to say that were we to run this again in similar climate then the brief would expand to include at least 1 spare t-shirt per person and an earlier start with a longer lunch (possibly including showers!). I am relieved to report that aside from the heat, it all went off well and 12 people from across Asia now have a better knowledge of Hong Kong but more importantly of each other!

A few pictures taken on the day….with an effort not to give any of the game away!

The Bank of China Tower, Central HK

The International Finance Centre, HK

The team on the Mid Level Escalators

Trying to keep the team out of this was the biggest challenge!