Circle of Rope in the Desert

In 2006 I was fortunate enough to attended a business conference in Dubai.

On one of the days we went out into the desert for some team building. It was March when the temperatures in Dubai were starting to rise, fortunately on this day it was only in the mid thirties!

We were in two teams and each team was transported from site to site in our own very large four wheel drive Land Cruiser.

The Task

“Your task is to go to the top of the sand dune where you will see a heavy rope in a large circle. Within the circle buried in the sand are six eggs, you have a maximum of fifteen minutes to locate all the eggs, the team that returns with all the eggs will win Good luck”

Four guys and one gal, went scampering up the dune and dived into the sand in a very competitive mood to beat the other team.

The Learning

My knees started to burn after about three minutes, roughly the same time it took the team to find our first prize egg. My precious knees must have focused my mind, because I got up and went to stand outside the circle of rope. In that moment one of life’s light bulb moments happened, which I have used at least once a month ever since.

“What are you doing?” One of the other team members shouted. “We have got this all wrong” I replied. “We should have discussed the task and planned our approach first not dive head first into the sand”. More light bulbs came on, we quickly discussed our tactic, found the other five eggs in less than five minutes and won the game.

The Benefit

Don’t rush in, be patient, stand outside the rope, spend valuable time planning and you won’t burn your knees.

T-CUP – Think & Act Clearly Under Pressure