Orchestrating a global undertaking

    Case studies | May 2017

    How does one coordinate a teambuilding and CSR event held simultaneously across 42 countries? With flexibilty and precise plans, discovers Barathi Narayan

    Event brief

    Catalyst Global partners – the largest international network of corporate teambuilding professionals – joined in from 42 countries on a 24-hour corporate treasure hunt, an event that is the first of its kind worldwide. Go Give, a corporate social responsibility event, saw 50 teams completing checkpoint activities including video and photo challenges that benefitted projects under Buy1GIVE1, a global business giving initiative.

    The event kicked off at sunrise in Auckland, New Zealand and concluded 24 hours later in Mount Maunganui, New Zealand.


    Given the global scale of the event, deciding on even a date and time when each of Catalyst Global’s 42 partners could participate proved to be difficult.

    “Invariably there would be one team that wouldn’t be able to attend during work hours because of an event,” said Catalyst Global’s spokesperson, Esther Daniel.

    Apart from the four set checkpoint activities, unique tasks had to be created for each team in locations of their choice, with activation codes having to be distributed the night before.

    A further challenge was collating videos streaming in from the different countries where the teams were located, after the event due to delays, which included the Turkey team’s cameras being confiscated by police for safety checks.


    Catalyst Global had to compromise and settle on a date that excluded three partners. The decision was also made to have the event at sunrise in the respective countries, with certain exceptions as “it was far too cold and dark in some countries to do right on sunrise, whereas in others like South Africa, sunrise was at 04.00,” explained Daniel.

    Communication with each of the teams was made easier through the appointment of a ‘Go Give Go To’ person who was also responsible for watching deadlines. The team leaders coordinated activity locations, collaborated with teammates to create a task related to their country that another team would have to go through, and distributed activation codes.

    Each team also appointed videographers who took charge of sending videos back to Daniel and her team of two, who collated and compiled them.

    “I was so tired but the excitement and joy of watching all the videos and photos of the teams coming in kept me going. It was like an addictive online game,” said Daniel.

    Key takeaways

    Looking back on Go Give, Daniel said: “The benefits go beyond the joy of giving. When employees participate in an organised giving programme, there is usually a process of learning and engagement as a group.

    “Appointing key people in each team enabled coordinated communication. (I’m) glad we set strict deadlines, (as) they helped us to complete the project.”.


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