Sideways is soon to turn 5 and I was thinking about the journey and this phrase came to my mind.
I heard this phrase 5 years back from one of the first clients we interacted with. We at sideways were new, excited to start our new journey of ‘theatre based methodologies for behavioral training’ and the only thing we wanted was a client to give us a ‘training brief’ , we to ‘design a workshop’ and ‘client to say yes’ and we to deliver on our promise! But all calls didn’t go like that. Infact a lot of conversations went like this …
Me: yes sir, tell us your requirements
Him: Well… err… you guys do teambuilding?
Me: yes sir, of course!
Him: ya, so we have an offsite. Just do some teambuilding types
Me: ok sir! But why do you want team building sir – what’s the learning objective?
Him: learning? Ohh…No no – we want fun team building…you know Na
Me: yes yes .. we know exactly what you want
Him: actually ya.. we want learning, some new leadership learning, buzz word you know na
Him: arrey – you guys are into training .. some innovation, something ..you give me options , I will choose
Me: yes sir
Him: ya put that also in it
Him: and remember, learning very important, but it should also be fun – remember its an offsite , you know na..
Me: yes, ofcourse
So basically what he meant is “I haven’t thought through this. My HR budget says learning needs to be there, my business lead would feel happy only if some big buzz word was mentioned, but the actual team would like it if they had fun – ‘unadulterated’. So, 2 yrs back it was mountain climbing, last year it was river rafting and this year he wanted theatre for ‘teambuilding types’”
Over the last 5 years, as I look back at the sideways journey, this brief and this type of conversation hasn’t changed. This type of client hasn’t changed, but yes the number of such people calling us – has changed – it has reduced and instead we have more and more clients calling us because they want to have a conversation with us which is about ‘learning through art based methods’.
Not because its new or its buzzword or it’s the fad or its fun but because IT WORKS!!
(And of course it will get the best rating in all your training programs, because its ALSO fun!)
Just want to thank for all those clients (more than 150 of them now) who called us, trusted us and fulfilled our existence by sharing their pains and helping us solve their concerns –treating us as a partner and didn’t just say “ Do some team building “
And if you still want us to do “teambuilding types” ….. of course! Bring it on!
Sunil Vishnu K