A teambuilding experience
that includes ropes, lava,
and saving children
There's nothing like surviving a natural disaster to bring people together. That's the concept, anyway, behind Evergreen Escapes' evergreenescapes.com).program “Volcano Eruption,” which brings corporate groups on an imaginary journey where they face the challenge of surviving an erupting volcano and are asked to complete various tasks in order to rescue a fictional group of school children from molten lava. “A big part of the program involves suspending reality in order to overcome metaphorical obstacles,” says Dan Moore, chief outings officer at Evergreen Escapes, Seattle (
The idea intrigued Zoe Fernan-dez, marketing and communications manager at Mettler-Toledo AutoChem Inc., Columbia, Md., who organizes a teambuilding activity each year for the company's U.S.-based sales and service departments. So, for a recent meeting in Seattle, Fernandez brought 42 employees to the Cascade Mountains to take part in the outdoor challenge.
“Our goal was to get the employees — who do not all work together regularly — to communicate, develop leadership skills, and work as a team,” she says. By the time the two-hour program had wrapped, the group had navigated through mountains, crossed over a simulated lava river while blindfolded, and rappelled down a rock wall.
Fernandez says the day was a success. “They were put into groups with people they had never worked with before, and many were surprised by how well they worked together.”