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Time to Celebrate – An Unusual Summer Event!

June 2013

On 5th June we delivered an unusual summer event for a key pet nutrition client. They were so happy that it’s only right to begin this blog with their feedback:

‘The afternoon event went really well, we can’t wait to get the films back … yesterday evening went absolutely great. The magician and mind-reader were amazing – great choices they really added another dimension. The photo booth went down a storm as we knew it would, pictures were being uploaded to Facebook straight away!! LOL. The band were really great getting everyone on the dance floor straight away with their lovely mix of music… ‘

Naturally, when a company hits a milestone they want to celebrate, even more so when they have two milestones in the same year which is why they chose KDM to organise the whole day and create a memorable event for them!

The initial brief was simple; a flexible afternoon teambuilding activity & evening entertainment during which long-lasting mementoes would be created. Pitching against 3 other companies our team put our heads together to create a bespoke solution based around our ‘Animation Innovation’ team event (Wallace and Gromit style film making) followed by a summer BBQ party with film screening. This proved to be a winning combination that ticked all the client’s boxes.

The event took place on site at their office and research centre in Leicester in a lovely Marquee with an open side so staff could enjoy the June weather (which thankfully was perfect!) The Animation Innovation hit four key requirements: Involvement of all guests – everyone had a specific role during the production of the films in addition to participating in outdoor challenges. Celebrating the company history – each animated short film depicted a key milestone in the company’s success. Creating something of lasting value – each of the animations created was designed to be utilised by the client following the event. Allowing staff to perform their work duties –the flexibility of the event allowed guests to come & go so that they could still carry out their critical pet care responsibilities. There was an amazing buzz in the Marquee all afternoon, all guests got stuck into the event; some guests were still working on their projects after home time!

In the evening, our Marquee was transformed to create a celebratory summer ball atmosphere with vibrant lighting, balloons & complimentary table dressing to reflect the company colours. Staff were joined by their partners to be greeted with a classic summer drink of Pimms & Lemonade and entertained by our brilliant mix ‘n’ entertainers – Magician, Caricaturist & Mind Reader.

After the big screen premiere of the animations and the ‘WAFTAs’ had been awarded guests enjoyed a traditional Hog Roast & buffet including a dessert of Mars Cheesecake (a little slice of heaven). Once all the guests were full an informal Wii competition took place; it was a close call on the Dance Stage as they all had ‘moves like Jagger’.

Whilst an amazing local live band were playing guests also enjoyed the unique experience of our Photo Studio, allowing groups of 10-15 people to create their own special memories as a reminder of this amazing celebration with a 6×4 photo to take away with them from a variety of backgrounds including two personalised to the client.

All in all, a perfect day to remember with 20 films to use for their future events…watch this space!

KDM’s Total Events Service

June 2013

A lower cost, saving of time and greater management of risk were the end results when our Hewlett Packard client chose to work with one supplier. One supplier can beat two or even three!

When we took a call in early April from the head of an EMEA Sales team at Hewlett Packard, the client was focused on his goal to improve his team’s communication and working styles – and wanted to hear ideas of how KDM could help via a team building product. However, with the client’s time at a great premium, a tight budget and only 5 weeks to go before the event, it soon became clear that a more valuable solution to the client was to place the organisation of the entire meeting into our hands.

Hence the following day, we sent a shortlist of venues that suited budget, location & meeting requirements – along with a suggested format and itinerary for the full 48 hours on site to include a mixture of presentations, business content and outcome focused team-build activities.

The client selected Easthampstead Park (Wokingham) to host the meeting combined with our Crystal Maze and Country sports events. A keenly negotiated venue rate and specific programme of activities that dovetailed with the business content delivered an extremely successful event that resulted in the client having his “…objectives fully met and within budget!”

KDM provide a total event management service. By working with one supplier the end result is a lower cost, a saving of your time and greater management of risk when organising conferences and meetings. So if you want to keep your business objectives in sight whilst achieving the best value and results possible then call us on 01782 646300 to discuss your event needs.

 

A Bunch of Cast Offs?

February 2013

Fittingly, it was a rainy cold February Monday afternoon when we stepped into the training room to embark upon a voyage into the unknown with our latest team event ‘Cast Away’ – a tabletop based strategy and communication challenge.

We endured the usual comments about our team – “they look like a scurvy crew, I don’t fancy your chances of survival with that mangy bunch of pirates” however we gathered our courage and set to the task at hand. Apparently, the ship we were travelling on had been shipwrecked and we were washed up on an unknown shore with no map, no food or water and basically no clue. Each team member was given a written set of different thoughts and ideas about the situation and having memorised (or taken notes of) the pertinent facts, we had to navigate as a team through the unfolding terrain represented on the tabletop with colourful location squares. Planning, timescales and understanding priorities were key as each decision we made revealed more ‘squares’ of our location and either rewarded us with supplies, information or things that made us die. Apparently, there are a lot of things that can kill you when you’re a cast away.

Gladly, after the 90 minutes we all made it out alive (sort of) with the following insights:
•    Assumption is a dangerous business! Useless information may not be so unimportant after all.
•    Sharing is important if you want to do well in life (my Mum would be proud)
•    Not knowing all the answers when you have to make a decision is quite scary
•    Clear communication is definitely an art
•    Losing your crew in a poisonous swamp and dying is surprisingly heart breaking…
•    But surviving a shipwreck and being rescued is surprisingly rewarding! In fact there were actually shouts of “We made it! Go KDM crew!”
Needless to say, we all thought this was a brilliant way to improve communication and team work within our group! Now that we are safely back on dry land please send us a message in a bottle (or an email if you prefer) to talk about this for your next team experience!

 

Sarah Fitz gets Her Man

November 2012

After years of keeping him waiting, our Venues and Agents Team Account Director Sarah Fitz finally said ‘I Do’ and just two weeks ago Lucky Jim finally got his girl. The happy couple went off on an eagerly awaited honeymoon in the USA and blew into New York just as Super Storm Sandy blew in from the other direction! Sandy soon realised that she’d met her match and moved on leaving Sarah and Jim to have a fabulous holiday and a truly amazing experience. Congratulations to you both from all your friends here at KDM.

Half-way There and All’s Well – Sort Of.

August 2012

Whilst it’s been a great week for the Olympics and Team GB – and I don’t just mean the athletes; everybody in the country has put on a great show for the world and the enthusiastic support from spectators for all the competitors (especially if they’re from Team GB) has been superb. The organisers have been building a great team to put on the Games and the British Olympic Committee have spent the last seven years building a team that wins medals.

And we’ve only got one thing wrong.

Why oh why did we tell everybody to keep out of London – and our good old public servants to ‘work from home’ (i.e. lie in, shop and watch the telly) – in the mistaken belief that London was going to be sooo busy.

London seems to manage ok normally in July/August when it’s rammed with tourists and it manages ok when there’s also a test at Lords, Rugby at Twickenham and a couple of Premier League fixtures taking place happening simultaneously with a gig by some pimply pop star I’ve never heard of. So what’s the big deal?

For months it’s been a source of wonder to me at the fuss being made and why Boris wasn’t serving his electorate by telling one and all that London was open to business and they should ignore the sirens of despair instead of which he was bunging ‘Olympic Bonuses’ to transport workers so that they would do what they were already paid to do.

Now that it’s been shown that additional burdens have not been put upon these heroic workers can we have our money back, please?

Actually, I lied. We actually got two things wrong. We insulted the bunch of psychopathic maniacs that passes for a regime in North Korea by waving the South Korean flag at them. Awesome. A truly inspired insult which deserves a special gold medal all of its own for the person responsible.

Whereas in reality no doubt some jobsworth undoubtedly castigated him/her rather than congratulating them.

KDM are Lead Sponsor for Children’s Hospice Ball

July 2012

It’s harder now for businesses to support charities but we believe that it’s very important for KDM to maintain our part in and contribute towards the wider community in which we live and work. We were therefore delighted once again to be a Lead Sponsor at the Donna Louise Children’s Hospice summer ball where we played our part in raising over £30,000 for this vital local charity. The Hospice provides a range of specialist care and support services for children with a shortened life expectancy and their families and nobody can fail to be moved by the work they do in a venture which is 100% funded by local voluntary fundraising.

Nicky and Kathy from KDM were involved in the early planning right through to fruition where nine of our staff provided audio-visual support and both pre-dinner and after dinner entertainment on a brilliant night which was superbly supported by our local community.

Kevin

Bribery Act – Not Again Please!!

July 2012

The Bribery Act came into force in 2011 and all the event industry talking heads promptly went into overdrive rambling on and on bemoaning the imminent end of the corporate hospitality industry.

Obviously we all know that the purpose of the act was twofold, namely:

1. Discourage dodgy builders from slipping brown envelopes into the sweaty hand of a grasping local authority luminary.

2. Prevent the British Arms Industry from being able to compete with their American and French competitors in generating overseas orders and consequently add to the decline of British manufacturing jobs.

Despite our lords and masters in Whitehall making this blindingly obvious the lawyers saw the £££ signs, the pen-pushers took the opportunity to find another way to hinder their sales force from selling widgets, and the self-proclaimed ‘voices of the events industry’ saw another opportunity to bore the pants off us all by talking complete twaddle.

Surely it’s obvious to anybody with enough nous to be able to work out which end of a toothbrush you clean your teeth with exactly what is and what is not a bribe?

Which brings me to the point. I know they’ve got to write about something but why oh why is the front cover of this month’s Meetings and Incentive Travel magazine trumpeting yet another article on the subject? Don’t ask me what it said as I don’t know. All I do know is that the red mist descended and I threw that highly respected publication at the paper basket. And missed.

Kevin

Fun Outdoors Come Rain Or Shine

May 2012

I don’t have a temperature gauge in my car but my phone is very snazzy and advises me it’s 24 °C today with blue skies and plenty of sun.

Hard to believe that only a few weeks ago we received loads of calls saying something along the lines of “I’ve booked an outdoor team building event, what if it rains?”

Well we provide disposable cagoules and tepees for shelter and if you really think your guests won’t want to go outside if it’s raining we can provide an indoor wet weather contingency.

But, we often find client’s have a great time regardless of the weather. Claire, budding photographer and sales administrator here at KDM, captured a very lively bunch having a whale of a time on a very wet day in Warrington last month.

Just click on the below thumbnails for larger images:

Posted in Team Building Blog

Spotlight On…The Bigger Picture

April 2012

Spotlight On…
This month’s Spotlight is on The Bigger Picture – an indoor collaborative team building event. Here we will give you all the details about this event including timings, guests, learning outcomes and feedback from previous clients.

Overview
The Bigger Picture is an indoor team building event designed to take place in a conference room. This event requires small groups to recreate a work of art from limited available information and resources. Each guest is given a miniaturised section of the artwork comprised of a number of individual tiles. Using only the equipment provided and within a fixed timeframe guests will scale up and produce their contribution to the finished full size masterpiece. At the finale, all guests gather together to assemble the sections of individual tiles within a framework to complete The Bigger Picture!

Guest Numbers and Teams
There aren’t really any minimum and maximum numbers for this event – but 10 to 500 guests are what the guidelines suggest. You don’t need to divide guests into teams because it is a collaborative event.

Timings
The suggested time for the event depends on the number of guests taking part and the number of tiles that have to be completed. As a guideline we’d say between 90 and 180 minutes.

Room Requirements
The room requirements for this event are fairly flexible, though cabaret style would be ideal. We provide table cloths so your chosen venue need not worry about any paint spillages!

Learning Outcomes
The Bigger Picture event mirrors the work environment by highlighting that whilst people take individual roles this impacts upon other people and what they are trying to achieve. As a collaborative event this event focuses on the importance of working together and communication. As pressure mounts, to get the picture completed, towards the event of the event it also demonstrates the need for time management!

Client Testimonial
“We had very positive feedback. Everyone was happy during and after the event. The reveal had a very funny effect on people; everyone just got up from the dining tables and gathered around the paintings!”
Client feedback on The Bigger Picture following their event in January 2012

Interesting Fact
As a refresher the office staff team took part in the Bigger Picture event one afternoon a few weeks ago. Graeme designed a bespoke image which the team then set about drawing and painting. The finished artwork (see image below) will adorn the walls of the KDM offices as a reminder of the event and what we managed to achieve.

For More Information
For more information on The Bigger Picture team building event please give us a call on 01782 646300 and we’ll be happy to help.

Posted in Team Building Blog

BRAND NEW EVENT – Animation Innovation

April 2012

Animation Innovation is a BRAND NEW indoor team building event from KDM.

Following an introduction to stop motion animation teams will be equipped with craft supplies, modelling clay and tools, corner studios and recording equipment before being tasked with creating, filming and editing a movie of their own! The brief sounds challenging and it is but the event is great fun and the results are hilarious.

The KDM team are fully briefed on the event following training last week and even succeeded in creating some films worthy of a BAFTA Short Animation award (even if I do say so myself). You can see the film by clicking on the following link http://vimeo.com/kdmevents/review/38987183/396d120d10.

For more information on this fantastic new indoor team building event please contact us on 01782 646300.

Posted in Team Building Blog

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