There’s no question about it – our team love a little healthy competition, sport and physical challenges. But for this year’s annual team building event, ‘Camp Survivor’, we rallied against the status quo to keep things a ‘wee bit different’. Rather than being another year of fierce physical challenges to conquer, 2019 was all about overcoming mental obstacles. In the face of adversity, we wanted the team to embrace the notion of a ‘growth mindset’, banding together to conquer the task at hand. 

Coined by Psychology Professor Carol Dweck, a growth mindset “is where people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work…creating a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment.” 

As the highly-anticipated Day One of Camp Survivor dawned, the team had “no idea where they were going,” TwoScots Director Jeremy tells us with a wry grin. The crew were split into teams and catapulted into ‘the unknown’, a 1.5hr drive away from the office into a National Park. 

Severed from the modern comforts of a typical ‘day in the office’, they embarked on an amazing hike, navigating rough terrain on a scorching 40-degree day. (Ouch). After hours of winding their way up and down the mountains of Victorian bush everyone launched into a beautiful cold-water hole – the feeling of both accomplishment and relief from the hike and extreme heat could be felt by everyone’s laughs. 

After drying off, drinking some warm water and eating some dried bugs, the team swiftly encountered the gruelling “Three H’s” that would be the hallmarks of our Bear-Grylls-style boot camp – hunger, hanger and heat. 

Whether it was abseiling or rock-climbing, building your own zip-line, going for hours without any food or walking back to camp under the merciless sun, it took immense mental strength for the TwoScots team to overcome these physical hindrances.  

All TwoScots team building activities ‘raise the bar’ from years gone by, and this year was no exception. Last year we had a basic log cabin with bunk beds and two toilets. This year,  we had wafer thin yoga mats, no pillows, sleeping bags and a field! Thankfully, a few hip-flasks of whiskey somehow made their way in. “We all needed a wee helping hand to try and sleep in these conditions!”, recalls Jeremy. 

Having ‘relaxed’ a little, it was time to camp-out under the stars. As you can imagine, the laughter was heard well into the wee hours of the morning but by 2am, TwoScots campsite was silent.

At 2.15am, the heavens opened with torrential rain. The team were diving into two small tents that were clearly not designed for sleeping 25 adults and a dog. To say there were no thrills and no luxury is a complete understatement and even the guides wet dog was seen spooning a TwoScots team member. Some of the team were laughing, some were angry, some were sleep deprived and some were seen bolting at the presence of a (very) large spider. 

“To top off a very rough night of sleep, we were awoken at 6.30am for an army-style 40 minutes PT session,” Jeremy recalls. “At this stage, I wasn’t sure if I was going to laugh or cry!”

As the TwoScots tight knitted team helped each other through the woes of hunger, discomfort and harsh weather extremes, there was a clear shift in perspective to appreciate the humour and small wins in even the direst of circumstances (and the serious depths of hanger). 

“As the dust settles, it is now clearer than ever before that we are stronger united,” says Jeremy. Taken away from modern comforts and forced to feel the wrath of the Great Outdoors, the TwoScots team demonstrated how a wee bit of humour and an unwavering growth mindset can lead to triumph in life’s toughest moments, both on and off the job.