Innovative Experience Sparks Meaningful Change

  • The Challenge Begins
    The Challenge Begins  Getting final instructions during team planning  
  • Teamwork
    Teamwork  Everyone gets involved in creating the meal  
  • Customizing the Entree
    Customizing the Entree  A team uses the professional kitchen  
  • Oversight by Chef
    Oversight by Chef  Observing collaboration and ensuring safety  
  • Anticipating Feedback
    Anticipating Feedback  Critique of the finished product  
  • All Dished Up!
    All Dished Up!  Masterpieces of variety and creativity  
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The Center for Corporate Education recently offered their inaugural William & Mary Restaurant Cooking Challenge as a new component in their custom leadership training programs.  In this time sensitive exercise, collaboration and team work were put to the challenge as teams decided a recipe and cooked a plated meal.  After a timed planning segment, cooking began and was interrupted with a “curveball” – a new unplanned ingredient had to be incorporated into the finished product.  How the team handled this unexpected complication was similar to problems encountered in real-world work environments.

Participants worked together in different ways outside their everyday work environment.  Potential new leaders, thinkers, decision makers and problem solvers may have emerged.  The goal was for participants to discover a new understanding of their own skill set in a non-traditional environment and apply these newly discovered team building strategies and leadership skills to the problems and challenges they meet each day at work.

This three-hour experience can be incorporated into any custom program for those clients looking for an innovative and exciting way to spark meaningful change and to build strategic thinking skills among teams.  The Restaurant Cooking Challenge can be easily modified to fit the size of small and large groups of up to 25 participants.  By design, this behavioral exercise will challenge your existing paradigms and stimulate new and innovative ways of engaging other team members through communication, building networks, delegation and problem solving.  One recent participant noted that it facilitated networking across organizational divisions of his company. Contact the CCE to discuss innovative training opportunities for your company.

“The restaurant challenge was a big hit.  It was a very important part of making the program as successful as it was.  It helped also to reinforce the leadership concepts we covered in class.”    - NNSB, a division of Huntington Ingalls, Inc.