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THE COUNTDOWN IS ON FOR BEEZEE FEST 2021

Right from the very beginning of launching BeeZee Bodies, I knew that training and personal development for the team would always be really important. Despite having limited resources in the early days, we have always strived to get creative with fun ways for the team to learn as much as possible in a fun, team-building environment.

In 2013, we teamed up with a DPC (Dialogue for Peaceful Change), a renowned conflict meditation organisation to run a long weekend of conflict resolution training which was a great chance to connect as a team, learn and develop together.

It is a sad fact that our industry is under-funded, making it difficult for us to rival the big commercial outfits. But what we can do is leverage what we do have:

  1. The fact we really care about the people we work with and their development
  2. That we are passionate about training people widely in order to help them grow as professionals
  3. That we love creating an environment where people get to do meaningful work AND have fun whilst doing it!

By getting our creative brains together, we have run a fun, yet thrifty annual week-long training for everyone at BeeZee Bodies for the past 8 years (with only a couple of exceptions), which often becomes the topic of conversation amongst the team for the following year!

Despite being put together on a budget, it is always a spectacle! I wrote a blog some time ago called ‘Creativity loves Constraint’; well, training week is a great example of this.

The team get together to provide personalised training, networking opportunities, team building activities, healthy food and fun experiences.

This is what we can do!

PREVIOUS YEARS

Each year, we have worked to capture the BeeZee Zeitgeist, or the ‘spirit of the times’ within the organisation for our training week. Imaginatively named ‘Training Week’(!), we always cover behavioural economics and how to apply these to the real world, discuss the BeeZee Bodies culture and solve any challenging issues we may be facing as a group.

Some examples include:

  • Turning Point: exploring as an organisation how to ‘grow well’. How to retain quality and bring the team along on the journey so they feel personally involved and invested in company growth and success.

  • Thrive: as our company grew, so too did our teams. And as some of our teams started to specialise, we developed training topics to evolve targeted areas (safeguarding in the real world, health and safety for real people etc) and introduced the team to our new term – Habit before the habit.
  • Connect: As we expanded geographically, it became clear that we needed better ways to stay connected as a team. Planning ‘Connect’ shifted the onus of training from solely the management team, and placed it in the hands of everyone so that all of the BeeZee Bodies team could have their say in the direction of their training and the topics of interest, be it psychological principles, conflict training, mental health first aid etc…

  • Reflect: In 2020, due to the global pandemic, the team couldn’t get together, but we did still do an amazing job of running ‘Reflect’, covering how to deliver meaningful services online and with vulnerable people going through a pandemic.
  • And here we are…. 2021 and BEEZEE FEST Training Week

BeeZeeFest is the celebration none of us got to have in the past 18 months. Missed Glastonbury? No problem, we have got you covered.

All of the training itself will be delivered by that very same team of experts that delivered training to Helen and I in 2010, to our small team in 2012, and our growing team in 2014, before the larger ‘training weeks’ took off.

Colin Craig and Shaunagh Craig (an Ex BeeZee Body herself!) will provide the full DPC course to all staff, allowing them to practice using different conflict resolution skills, explore conflict styles and apply it directly in all areas of their work and lives. This is a big part of supporting sustainable behaviour change as well as being a useful skill in life!

As if that wasn’t good enough, there will also be street food served throughout the week, welly wanging, hamster zorbing, lots of physical activity opportunities, decade themes dressing up, quizzes, pizza making, a disco and enjoying some of the most legendary festival performances of the ages. There are also a lot of secrets that aren’t yet known to the teams, so I won’t spoil any surprises here.

The theme is ‘festival’ because we value being together and experiencing great things together. In reality, it is a way to switch off from the immediacy of the everyday grind and get some new perspective on our important work. Whether this comes from some training, a quiet moment of reflection, an insight from a silly game, or a moment of connection and exploration with people you don’t get to see much; it is a great opportunity to grow and connect.

The countdown is on. The team are busy digging out their wellies, body glitter and floral crowns so keep an eye on social media for updates and this blog for a full post-event review 😀

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