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3 Team building exercises with IKEA furniture

3 Team building exercises with IKEA furniture

This week, we're doing something a little different with the Jetlore blog.  

For the past 5 years, the Jetlore team has worked in a cozy little office in Sunnyvale, CA.  It had everything we needed for quite a while - numerous conference rooms, whiteboard walls, ample space for ping-pong, and several coffee shops a short walk away.

But Jetlore experienced tremendous growth in 2016, doubling in both sales and team size, welcoming professionals from all over the Bay Area.  The office that once comfortably fit 8, then 16 people now had to house 35, and although the Jetlore team is one big happy family, we all started to get a bit cramped.  

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(The lack of space caused certain staff members to have problems with their TPS reports - a shout out for all you Office Space fans).

Last week, Jetlore said goodbye to its home of more than 5 years, and said hello to a major office upgrade!  We're now located in San Mateo, CA, in an excellent location and a beautiful, spacious office.  

Take a look HERE!

Using the office move as an opportunity for team building

Here at Jetlore, we take every opportunity to improve as a team, so that we can better serve our customers - the office move was no different.  Throughout the move, we challenged ourselves with unique and important team building exercises.

1: The Desk Deconstruction

IKEA furniture is great, because each item from IKEA has less than 10 parts, the majority of which are 1/1000th of an inch tall and invisible to the naked eye, and it's apparently illegal to keep assembly instructions. Losing a single screw means that your desk, sofa, or bed will fall down, much like this unfortunate furniture fail.

The exercise of breaking down IKEA furniture helps your team learn to be organized and communicate effectively, to make sure you have the right parts when the time comes to re-construct.  

Jetlore's team building strategy: Open communication during the breakdown, each team member specifically labelling each part of their own furniture.  Designated team members collect small parts and tape them to the corresponding table leg.

2: Heavy Lifting

Once broken down, moving furniture to a designated location fosters teamwork, coordination, and spacial planning.

While IKEA furniture is not incredibly heavy by any means, a single person moving 30 desks, couches, and storage racks by one's self will definitely cause injury.  The Jetlore team had to move our deconstructed desks to a centralized location where the moving company could pick them up or risk them getting left behind - or worse, risk getting them moved by this moving company.

Jetlore's team building strategy: At least two team members per desk, freely communicating and coordinating movements.

3: Reassembly

The most challenging exercise of the three; reassembling an entire office creates a unified, collaborative experience for your entire team.

At this point, all the furniture has been moved into the new office, and the moving company has placed every item and box in a seemingly random location.  The Jetlore team came in Monday morning with the task of organizing everything, finding the correct parts, and reassembling each piece of furniture.  Unsurprisingly, we found a significant number of screws missing, which made our desks about as stable as these incredibly uncoordinated puppies.

Jetlore's team building strategy: Embrace the chaos!  In general, moving is exciting, hectic, and strenuous, and it took our entire team most of the morning to get everything in working order.  By coming together as a team, we were able to get everything into working order quickly and efficiently.

Jetlore's new offices (video link here) represent a period of growth that we're all very excited about.  Jetlore uses AI to empower human workflows in retail - just wish it could've empowered our human workflow disassembling and reassembling IKEA desks.  However, with these IKEA team building exercises firmly under our belt, we're more prepared than ever for whatever needs to be assembled next.

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