Why Geocaching in Texas is an Ideal Team Building Exercise
Geocaching – an outdoor treasure hunt enjoyed by millions of people across the world – is a revered activity in Texas, since natural landscapes abound and great weather means that you can participate in this activity for most months of the year. The activity is simple: it involves picking a treasure to discover from Geocaching.com, or through an app you can download onto your phone. You then use GPS technology to find the treasure, with many levels to choose from, so you can work your way up to expert level. Geocaching is more than just a fun activity for scouts and nature lovers; it is also the ideal team building activity, for many reasons.
Geocaching Brings Teams out into Nature
Experts are continually warning us of the dangers of the sedentary lifestyle, and of spending too much time indoors. On the one hand, sitting for too many hours contributes to obesity, cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes and many other physical and mental conditions.
On the other hand, many people have lost their essential connection to nature, and we suffer for it by losing our ability to focus and missing out on the documented stress-busting benefits of simply being in the Great Outdoors.
Geocaching Teaches Teams About Each Other
Not all team building activities are equal. Some managers confuse team building with socializing, thinking that a weekend away or having fun together, is all the ultimate aim. Activities such as geocaching have a unique ability to bring teams together, because in essence, they call upon us to solve problems. When you work on a geocaching challenge, it is symbolic of how you approach tasks in the workplace. One person may tend to take the lead; some may just go along with the activity, providing less input. Still others may may few but pertinent observations that reveal a deeper knowledge of nature (or other subject matter), sometimes contributing more than those who are more vocal.
Geocaching allows us to analyze and discuss how each member of a team prefers to process and share information. Many top management teams follow up geocaching activities with a learning style type test, whose aim is to discover crucial differences between team members.
The Kolb Learning Style Test is one widely used tool which reveals that some of us are ‘hands on’ learners who like to learn by doing. Others are more reflective; they like studying maps and information before making a move. Still others are intuitive; they like to go with their gut feeling and value human interaction the most. Finally, some are generators of ideas; they are creative and often dream up creative solutions to problems.
It is important, in geocaching and in a normal work scenario, to understand the value that each team member brings. By taking time to talk about the fun we had and how each of us contributed, we can analyse how each team member likes to work and identify ways to ensure that they have the time and conditions they need to help the team reach common goals. Geocaching brings us out into nature and is a fun outdoorsy activity whose consequences are considerably more profound than many initially imagine.
Country Line Contributor: Sally Writes
Photo By: Jason Blackeye