PictureEffective Team Building
Several times lately I have been asked, by people who have gone through the Canvas Creek experience, if I could go to Washington, D.C., and get our representatives to act like a team.  Sometimes the question is presented with a bit of a laugh and sometimes with a wistful, ‘how could we pull that off?’ tone.   

I generally laugh at this question and yet part of me wants to scream from the rooftops “YES! By all means lets get those fine people to stand in front of a canvas, make them create art, and see just exactly what would happen when they experience truly effective team building.”   Okay, that sentence is a bit long for roof top exclamations, but my heart still means it.  Yes!  Let’s team build in DC for America!

You see to have effective team building you need a couple of really good things,  a crazy, powerful, shock the system and make people look at things differently, experience.   An experience that is kind of like a powerful storm, things are different afterwards and participants realize that only by relying on each other could they have weathered it.   Secondly you need good people, people who are willing to try to make things better, people who want to work together for a common cause, even if at the moment they aren’t doing that very well. 

I do think that every person who goes to D.C. goes with the best of objectives, the loftiest goals.  They want to work with others to accomplish great things.    No-one says “I want to go through the life altering drama that is a campaign so I can go to Washington and make things really suck for others. “ No, on the contrary, they want to help.  They have ideas, ideals and the very best of intentions, but, and I never thought I’d do this, to quote Ozzy Osbourne,  they sometimes are “going off the wheels on a crazy train.”  

So, would I go to DC to get our elected officials to play nice, to remember that they are all on the same team, the team of keeping America great?   “YES!” 

And you know what?  I’m confident I could do it.  All I need is a blank canvas, a lot of paint brushes and the opportunity to say “hush up for a minute so you can actually hear, see and feel, what is happening, and what you can create.  Together. “   I might have to tell them twice, or maybe even three times, to be silent so they can be heard, but in the end they would get it.  They would realize that it takes every element to make a whole, and that no-one creates this thing called community alone.   And that, my friends, is the hallmark of effective teambuilding.  Creating something together that cannot be created alone.      



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