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Marketwired’s leadership team builds prosthetic hands for victims of land mines



Marketwired’s leadership team builds prosthetic hands for victims of land mines

Unique challenge combines team-building and humanitarian outreach  

One measure of a successful company is how well its internal teams work together to bring corporate goals to life. To achieve this admirable goal organizations often use team-building exercises to foster collaboration among their various employee teams, but those exercises – like falling backward and trusting your team-mate will catch you –  tend to elicit collective groans because the lessons don’t usually carry over into the workplace.

During its recent quarterly executive summit, Marketwired’s leadership team participated in a team-building exercise unlike any other. That’s because it combined team-building with humanitarian outreach: building prosthetic hands for amputee victims of landmines around the world. This engaging activity left the entire room of 39 participants visibility moved and emotionally invested.

Called the Helping Hands Project,  its run by Helping Hands Canada, an organization dedicated to getting companies involved with a worthwhile cause while super-charging employee engagement. The exercise also supports Marketwired’s community giving initiative.

After an introduction to the program’s goals the group split up into teams of three. Each team received a set of prosthetic parts, a toolkit and an instruction guide and was given only one hour to build a ready-to-use prosthetic hand.

Elaine Ewing, Lina Yu and Dmitry Yastrebov ponder their next move.

Elaine Ewing, Lina Yu and Dmitry Yastrebov ponder their next move.

As each team soon discovered, some vital tools were missing from different toolkits, requiring teams to rely on each other to achieve their goal. In all, the Marketwired teams assembled 13 prosthetic hands and packaged each one in a personalized pouch for delivery to land-mine victims in Vietnam.

At the end of the day Jeff Cann, Marketwired Director of Sysomos Customer Experience, said “I can’t wait to go home and tell my wife and my family about what we did today because it’s the most impactful I’ve ever taken part in. It’s pretty amazing. It says a lot about the company – getting us involved in something like this.”

Brian Quijano, Jim Delaney and Lisa Davis proudly display their almost-completed hand.

Brian Quijano, Jim Delaney and Lisa Davis proudly display their hand.

Conducting the exercise was Montreal-based HR consulting firm Bromelin People Practices, an organization that administers the Helping Hands Project. According to Shelley Brown, Practice Leader at Bromelin, “It was very exciting to introduce the Helping Hands Project to Marketwired’s executive staff and watch team collaboration grow at the same time the prosthetic hands were taking shape. Helping Hands illustrates the power of a lasting, purposeful activity – it connects to who you are, where you are going and how you will get there by engaging your hands, heads and hearts.”

 


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