Powerful team learning through strategic challenges

INSEAD | Fondation Des Amis L’Atelier

Where there is a will there is a way. In just one day a team of 18 on an executive programme with INSEAD created a walkway and bridge to assist with the physiotherapy of disabled residents being cared for at Fondation Des Amis L’Atelier in Fontainbleau, France.

“As always, the brief was for the team to have the opportunity to make an impact in their community,” said Splash MD Simon Poole who was the programme manager for the project. “The  learning outcome was very specifically for the individuals to work better together as a team.

“We split the team into three groups of six, purposely giving them too much work, knowing they wouldn’t have time to complete all their tasks within their groupings,” Simon explained.

“The team with the largest task realised shortly after starting that there was no way they would be able to finish their section, so asked for some from the other two teams to join them.

“But then those teams realised that they wouldn’t be able to finish their tasks. So, they all had to make a decision, in consultation with the charity, about adapting the designs in order to achieve as much as they could with the time and resources available.

“Conversations about the project build later translated into discussions about their workplace culture and how they could work more effectively together.

“It was a pretty powerful learning experience for them.”

Loïc Sadoulet, Affiliate Professor of Economics at INSEAD, added: “The Splash Project was exactly to our specifications – it was really important that we had a design that they could not deliver in silos.

“Indeed, one team had to give up on its silo objectives to make the project succeed, and it worked, thanks to the trust and hard work of the Splash team.”