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XVenture Experience presented by NORTHS

Friday 30 September, 2016

The inaugural Xventure Experience at NORTHS was held on Friday 30 September, 2016 with a total of 28 teams of 6 taking part in this four hour event. Teams came from a wide range of organisations including some heavy hitters such as Westpac, Deloitte and Sydney FC. With participants being given very little information prior to the day about what they will be taking part in, there was a lot of anticipation building up in NORTHS Auditorium. Participants were huddling in groups attempting to de-code this event, however things became a lot clearer once XVenture Founder and CEO Mike Conway turned on the microphone and welcomed everybody to this XVenture experience.

Mike outlined the significance of teamwork and leadership in today’s fast paced business world. He emphasised the importance around Emotional Intelligence (the ability to identify and manage your own emotions and the emotions of others) and how some of the world’s strongest and most respected leaders encompass this quality in their leadership style. Mike showed a video to the teams that had a number of organisational leaders talking about leadership and different factors that make a leader successful. After a quick outline of the XVenture rules it was downstairs for a group shot and from that point on it was GAME ON!

In what is propbably the windiest day Sydney has experience this year, teams carefully opened their envelopes so as not to lose any paper in the wind and they found a local area map and set of 18 challenges located within a 1km radius of NORTHS. Here I personally found my first challenge of the day for you see on a fitness scale of 1 – 10 I would probably fall at 2. Being mathematically inclined I initially was calculating distances between key points, North Sydney Oval – The Greens – North Sydney Council – Cammeray Golf Club… This was going to be tough! But I knew that I was only kidding myself if I came into this with the belief that there was little to no strenuous activities waiting around the corner.

Our team (NORTHS Pink) formed a group huddle and we examined the map and challenges carefully, some challenges required multiple groups to participate whilst others didn’t rely on this factor. This saw the need of keen negotiation skills as you attempt to reason with other teams to form alliances and complete multi team challenges. As a keen viewer of Australian Survivor and a fairly personable individual I took this challenge head on and began to form alliances with other teams. However as the day progressed team priorities changed and alliances broke.

Throughout the experience we found ourselves having to change game plan six or seven times as we arrived at key challenges however a wait time was evident… was it worth waiting? Should we run another km to another challenge? Will it be available? What was the true value of time in this event? Initially we were confident in completing at least 10 challenges out of 18 however it quickly became evident that to complete even 5 of these challenges in the allotted time was going to be challenging.

With an hour left we found ourselves a man down as a key player in the team had to pull out to make a flight, so there we were, down on luck, a man down and we just reached a challenge that required a piece of paper to be completed and ran back to a lockbox location a kilometre away which was going to be closed at 3.30pm (our clocks showed the current time as 3.26pm). The belief of one team member kept our spirits alive as he filled in the form and off he went, managing to successfully drop this off at the location within 3 and a half minutes. This lifted our spirits and as a team we managed to finish on a high with three final challenges.

All teams were back at NORTHS by the 4.30pm cut-off and scores were being tallied. The anticipation in the room could be cut with a knife as Mike began to reveal the all-important scores. You really could feel the disappointment in the 25 teams that didn’t make the top 3. The hard work put in by all teams throughout the experience meant we all truly were winners and everybody came out of the day with a more enriched knowledge of leadership and teamwork.

Robert Lopez – Marketing & Promotions NORTHS

Team NORTHS (Pink)