End of March 2016, Open Society Initiative for Europe invited our Sherpas to facilitate their two-day team retreat in Barcelona, Spain. The main objective of the OSIFE retreat was to create a more cohesive and productive team culture, and a positive and constructive group spirit. This was particularly important following their recent growth and merge of OSIFE and the former Think Tank Fund.

 

THE JOURNEY

 

In co-creation with the OSIFE organising team, we designed a participatory process through a variety of non-formal methodologies in a safe and informal setting. These activities allowed the OSIFE team to better know each other, to exchange experiences and expectations, as well as to enhance collaboration and advance OSIFE’s organisational culture.

 

On the first day, we ran a series of outdoor teambuilding activities aimed at creating a fun experience, enhancing the social relations, trust and level of collaboration within the OSIFE team, thus building effective working relations in the organisation.

 

The second day’s focus was on organisational culture which we approached through a tailor-made Appreciative Inquiry process. We guided the team members throughout a journey in which they discovered and identified the organisational processes that work well within their organisation and envisioned processes that would enhance OSIFE’s organisational culture in the future. These two first phases (Discover and Dream) in the Appreciative Inquiry process prepared the ground for the discussions on the 2017-2020 OSIFE strategy, while defining the success factors of a strong, healthy organisational culture at OSIFE.

 

Building on the results of the Discover and Dream phases, participants further elaborated how the organisation could reach its desired destination (Design). Finally, they discussed the road ahead for a successful implementation of the selected ideas (Destiny).

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