Do you want to build a caper? Mindshare, Inc. was an award-winning, boutique digital public affairs agency that took the advocacy world by storm.
to assist in an annual event geared toward encouraging problem-solving outside normal parameters.
On the surface, they were team-building games, but on a much deeper level, the events brought out natural leadership, uncovered deficits in loyalty and comprehension, and gave the staff the opportunity to see each other both as freestanding individuals and as partners in success.
Each caper was designed around a real-world crime such as a bank robbery, or an international credit card theft ring. Teams were given a set of locations, clues and background details. They were required to design a team identity, work together to solve the crime and to deliver a final report on the path they took to their conclusion.
While I helped with both the creative and logistical design of the events, my primary responsibilities were to closely observe each team’s process, serve as the honest judge of the outcomes based on team-work, creativity and legitimacy of conclusions (sometimes creativity won over accuracy) and to report on my assessment of individual staff competencies.
All of this was tremendous fun. The outcomes were extremely useful in making decisions about how best to support and grow the staff. And, I was charged to support, and sometimes rein in, unbounded, visionary leadership.