BTI360 Leadership Training – The Catapult Challenge

/ September 28, 2016 in 

At BTI360, we believe in an approach to training that doesn’t have to be dull and boring. In fact, the more fun that comes along with it the better! Hence why we chose the Catapult Challenge as our most recent leadership training on Friday, September 9th.

Catapult Challenge…what’s that?

What is the Catapult Challenge you may be wondering? Well, it’s two rounds of competition, both requiring teams to work together and build a working catapult from various unlikely objects like, PVC pipe, a cardboard box, a spatula, a colander, an ice scoop, masking tape, and bungee cords all within a half hour. The first round of competition is distance only, while the second is distance + accuracy, requiring team members to catch projectile koosh balls in varying sized buckets for points. πŸ™‚

Catapult Challenge + Leadership Training

Being able to get out of the office and work with teammates on new and unexpected challenges can be very beneficial. Here’s a few teammate takeaways from after catapulting all afternoon.

We are not defined by our past failures.”

Don’t be wedded to your past design.”

Trust and humility go hand and hand when two teams with a working prototype are combined and needing to move forward with only one design. Everyone has a role to play and their own strengths. You can’t do it all, you must trust your team to help out and do their part.”

Testing phase of design was huge in helping us go the furthest distance. We reinforced during testing which helped make our catapult more durable during competition, ultimately leading to victory!

Cadence is key. We focused on consistency but didn’t focus on cadence which in the end slowed us down and we couldn’t keep up with the team that had both.”

Transitioning to software development

Since we don’t build catapults for a professional living :'(, it’s important to understand how some of these same leadership principles apply to working on software development teams. Today we’ll just look at one. Trust. Trust is one of the most important aspects of any successful team.

So think about what the trust gaps are on your projects. One of the best ways to build trust is by having open and candid conversations and communication between teammates. When you have low trust on a software team the cost of delivery goes way up and the speed goes way down. But when there’s trust and open communication the opposite becomes true. You find you’re team is able to deliver much faster and the cost of delivery decreases.

Some food for thought…who on your team do you need to work on building more trust with?

And the winner is…

It wouldn’t truly be competition without a winner and this picture says it all..

Bragging rights

Photo Gallery

A quick thank you to TeamBonding for helping us create this awesome experience! Here’s a few pictures to capture the rest of the fun had as orange became the dominant color at Potomack Lakes Sportsplex that day…

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An Engineering Culture: BTI360’s Orange Slice – October 2016

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