How to prepare colleagues for a Corporate Firewalk
We are often asked “How should I prepare my colleagues for a Corporate Firewalk?” Or it might be more along the lines of, “So how do I tell everyone what I’ve signed them up for?” Or even more common is, “Everyone in the office is going to kill me for organising this!” The thought of how to prepare colleagues for a Corporate Firewalk might seem more daunting that the actual Firewalk!
Our Corporate Firewalks and Team Building Events are booked for all sorts of reasons. In fact, you would be surprised by the diversity of the reasons. However, one constant is that Corporate Firewalks are normally booked by one person. Or a small team or committee within the company.
These people can see the benefits from such a Team Building Event and have usually been empowered to go ahead with what they think will be the most value for their colleagues and the company. As soon as it is booked, they will then wonder how they should prepare their colleagues for a Corporate Firewalk. Managers will often ask us for advice on how to present the Firewalk and how to deal with team members that sceptical or afraid of Firewalking.
How to prepare colleagues for a Corporate Firewalk
When I am asked how to prepare colleagues for a Team Building Firewalk, my answer usually is, don’t say anything about it all. It is much better to just tell your colleagues that they are going to be taking part in a Team Building Event, and it is a surprise. The Event will be indoor and outdoor, and they should wear comfortable clothes and shoes appropriate to the weather and being outside. And that is all you need to say.
The important thing is that you are not lying to them. The truth is that there will be a professional trainer facilitating their experience and leading them through a few different activities. Firewalking will only be one of those activities. When we lead Firewalks, they are more about the physical experience and less about the talking. And at the end of the event, everyone, including those who do not Firewalk, will leave satisfied and pleased with their new experiences.
You should read this post about the benefits of the surprise Firewalk.
“Communication is the windshield wiper in the rain storm of life.”
J. J. Goldwag
This time, saying less is more!
We are all on a spectrum as to how we like to experience life. Some people do not like risk and adventure, and other are thrill seekers or adrenaline junkies. Most of us are in the middle third of this spectrum. Some days we are more than happy to be outside our comfort zone, and other days we would rather stay in it.
When you are considering how to prepare colleagues for a Corporate Firewalk special attention needs to be given to those who are less happy with risk. These people do not like being outside their comfort zone and they find adrenaline and adventure to be stressful. Usually they will have very fixed views on “extreme” pursuits, which complement and support their limiting beliefs.
So, what happen if you tell them that you have booked a Firewalk for this years Team Building Event? Chances are, and it happens, they just won’t show up. Their fears will talk over and they will find an excuse not to be there. We know of times when they have unconsciously sabotaged the event. And I believe that is not something that you want, right?
Word gets out…
If you decide to keep the Firewalk a secret and word somehow gets out, you will need to address this with your Team. We recommend getting your Team together and give them all the information they need about the event. The truth is always better than interpretations or misunderstandings.
Now you will have to prepare colleagues for a Corporate Firewalk. And there are some very important pieces of information that you should share with them.
This information is equally relevant if you have decided not to have a “surprise Firewalk”. That might be because you know your Team do not like surprises. Or, because you know your Team well enough that you can talk openly about what will happen on the day of their Firewalk.
Three important pieces of information
Nobody should feel pressured to walk on fire, and they must feel empowered and free to make the decision to Firewalk for themselves. It’s worth reading that a few times and working out how you communicate that to your Team. On the day of the Firewalk we will reemphasise this at great length. Deciding to Firewalk MUST be an individual’s decision that is free from peer pressure and other influences.
Your choice to Firewalk or not to Firewalk does not define you as a person. Nor should it be interpreted as some sort of test. A Corporate Firewalk is mostly for fun, learning, personal development, entertainment, quality time together and building relationships. Nobody will notice who Firewalks and who doesn’t. People only ever see who is Firewalking, they never see who isn’t. Everyone is too busy dealing with their own emotions and having fun to pay attention as to who is Firewalking.
Even if someone knows that they will not do the Firewalk, it is very important that they are there anyway. They will have a fantastic and memorable time with their Team simply by being around the Fire. Often there are other activities happening for the Team and they will take part in those. There are always enough things happening to make the event interesting and beneficial for everyone, and I mean everyone. And it is worth noting that the Firewalk itself, is the shortest part of the Team Building Event.
Look to the goals
To conclude, take the focus away from the Firewalk. That is only one part of an amazing Team Building Event. Instead, talk about how much you will have together, the atmosphere and energy, the learning, new experiences, and the Team Bonding. The outcomes of the Firewalk are what you are mostly after anyway, so talk about those. You can read about them here – https://firewalkhq.com/hidden-benefits-of-a-corporate-firewalk
And if you need more advice, get in touch. We will gladly help!