Pharma giant’s teams scale Everest online

Pfizer called on Team Building Asia to engage staff working remotely in a bonding effort by organising a virtual climb of the world's highest mountain through Peak Performance Online

MULTINATIONAL pharmaceutical corporation Pfizer engaged Team Building Asia to deliver a remote-working focused activity to their district managers to Asia Pacific.

Result table showing team positions on ‘Everest’

Peak Performance Online has been designed for teams working remotely or in remote locations to engage in a simulation to climb Mount Everest over 20 days. In the online teambuilding simulation, two minutes represents one day of progress.

Pfizer participants joined the Virtual Conference Room in April and opened two proprietary weblinks to the Peak Performance Online system. Ten teams of four to five participants each competed in both the game interface and the leader board.

The Pitch
Team members are encouraged to process information with fellow team members who are connected remotely. They tackle issued such as weather conditions, routing, summiting and returning safely to base.

All this requires agile thinking, attention to process improvement and some innovation managed though a professional digital platform.

After the initial briefing, TBA facilitators visited each team in the special breakout rooms during the Training Mode of the game to observe and give assistance where needed.

The Training Mode was completed successfully, with all teams getting scores on the leader board meaning they understood the basics of the game although it was apparent that some struggled with parts of the game processes.

TBA facilitators observed that some teams were talking all at the same time but after some discussion found their way to communicate more effectively, whereby they could listen better and then make important decisions on how to move in that stage of the game.

Initial strategy planning was low, with teams taking a more agile approach to understand the functionality of the game. As they neared the end of the Training Mode sections, however, most teams had found their way and made sure to clarify and verify what each team role needed to do for the team to work in harmony.

Big Moments
The Q&A session after the Training Mode let teams confirm any points of the game they were unsure about. TBA facilitators were impressed with the depth of questioning.

For example, questions about where and when to place tents to take advantage of acclimatisation showed great insight.

More… Team Building Asia’s David Simpson on how to engage team members working from home

TBA facilitators felt these conversations showed courage and enabled people to achieve success when their organisation faced real-life challenges.

Facilitators also found that “situational leadership” was ever present as teams kept reminding each other of the overall objective and to reshape strategy when needed.

The Upshot
Ricardo T. Morales, Pfizer’s cluster lead for Philippines and Pakistan, global commercial operations, said: “Team Building Asia did an awesome job in engaging our team and participation was outstanding.

“We were thoroughly impressed by the performance of all the teams and the linkage to our objectives of situational leadership and courageous conversations. The effectiveness of the programme has scored highly and we thoroughly recommend this innovative remote activity.”

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