How we delivered the perfect team building event
Case Study: Faculty-Focused Fun
THE MISSION: Andy S., a department chair at the Head-Royce School, was planning a faculty retreat for the English department’s 16 teachers. With a limited budget and staying close to home, he wanted the teachers to participate in a fun and lively activity that would reference the school curriculum.
OUR GAMEPLAN: The Wise Guys customized our popular FUNCYCLOPEDIA puzzle-hunt to fit in Oakland’s Jack London Square. We incorporated books from the school’s curriculum in our challenges: players staged photo re-enactments of literary moments from works like Macbeth (washing off bloody hands in the bathroom of a bar) and the Odyssey (PICTURED: Odysseus tied to the mast of his ship to avoid the song of the Sirens).
“We loved the game. LOVED it. Folks are still raving. You made me look like a freakin’ genius for hiring you two… Really, truly, you guys are masters — the wit and the damned cleverness in the clues is pretty stunning. And it was just the ideal game for a group like our bookish selves.” -Andy S.
Case Study: Food For Thought
THE MISSION: A noted destination management company in Los Angeles asked for a custom dinner game: a brain-bending puzzle suite for 200+ attendees. The game had to be difficult enough that it would challenge the high-IQ attendees, it had to fit in a ballroom, it had to incorporate technology, and it had to be playable over dinner.
OUR GAMEPLAN: We created an interconnected array of visual and word puzzles – some inspired by the challenging MIT Mystery Hunt, others entirely our own invention – that included video clues, an armada of iPads, and a rogues gallery of A-list celebrity suspects. The game began with physical puzzles in the centerpieces on every table and the second phase began after dinner when the plasma screen TVs on every wall flickered to life with the rest of the puzzles. Players submitted answers with our game moderators via iPad, earning points and bonuses with a custom scoring system we created especially for the occasion. We updated the standings in real time to a projection in the center of the ballroom and awarded trophies to the top 3 solvers.
“This team came up with a fun and challenging activity for an audience that is truly brilliant…which is not an easy task.” – Kari L.
Case Study: Building From Scratch
THE MISSION: USC’s Keck School of Medicine resolved to reboot their orientation program. Whereas the program used to begin immediately with instruction, the committee now wanted the focus on incoming students and faculty members telling their story and building camaraderie within the groups of 6 who will work together throughout their entire med school career – even dissecting a cadaver together! (But not on the first day.)
OUR GAMEPLAN: We created “The Med School Olympics,” a custom game with a melange of challenges giving all the team members a chance to show off their variegated and diverse talents, while developing a method for navigating unfamiliar circumstances as a group. We tested the team’s puzzle solving abilities and creative thinking, and spiced the game up with inter-team competitions that got the (oftentimes nervous) 1st year students meeting, interacting, and laughing with new friends and colleagues, sweeping away first-day-of-school jitters and forming enduring bonds of friendship and esteem.
“We learned about each other and the way each one of us thinks through things and works together with team members. I could not have been more satisfied with this part of the retreat!” – USC student / future doctor