It isn’t always easy to feel comfortable in a room full of 5 dozen of your competitors. But with the right atmosphere, competitors become comrades and everything turns out great!
If you were ever an intern, you know that it’s an exciting yet nerve-wracking time of your life. You’re constantly proving yourself, wary of competitors, and feeling tested at every turn. At a big company like Medtronic, it’s a proving ground for the future, and interns love their “jobs” but there’s sometimes a little pressure to “perform”.
Nervous Interns Quickly Loosen Up
So when we were booked for a Wheelcharity™ workshop for 60 interns, it was no surprise that the group entered the room acting a little nervous.
They arrived slowly, and wandered in not knowing what to expect. It didn’t help that the room set aside for our workshop was fairly unknown to most of them (the Metronics facility is huge).
First Order of Business: Icebreakers
Luckily, our facilitator knew just the remedy for a stiff group: icebreakers! They did three of them, then a fourth that also served to determine their teams for the rest of the workshop activities.
Circuit Ball, a new one, proved to be a great icebreaker, and some of the old standards worked their magic, as usual (Say What I Say, for example). Soon these interns, many of whom didn’t know one another, were loosening up and getting into the groove of things.
Group Activities Help Interns Forget the National News for a While
Nationally, this was a day of unrest and conflict so the news was on everyone’s mind. That’s what may have also contributed to the initial subdued mood. However, the icebreakers worked and everyone was soon getting to know one another.
Then, they began creating, connecting, and doing a little bit of friendly competition with the hands-on activities that were planned for the workshop.
The group had fun with “Commercials” – that’s the competitive part of the workshop. Everyone came together and recognized that, in spite of difficult and challenging circumstances, individuals and groups can turn the tide, even if it’s just for one another.
Needless to say, everyone left the event energized and excited, and happy to have made a difference for nine people in desperate need of wheelchairs. Wheelchair donations were managed through Wheels for the World, who distributes the wheelchairs throughout the globe for those in need.