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Team competence at the assessment center: Applicant cooking with Reinhold Messner & the LinkedIn founder?

Write a job, applyrecruiting is common practice. But there are also exciting, alternative recruiting methods: hiking, cooking and extreme sports. How does this work?

Alternative recruiting - can that work?

When I visited the Zukunft Personal, the largest European trade fair, some time ago Panel on team building in recruiting moderated, one question came up again and again:

Can team building activities such as climbing, skiing or hiking replace time-consuming application processes? Can this even be an alternative to traditional recruiting, because you can test the applicants in advance, so to speak? A fun variant of the assessment center, which is generally perceived as stressful, so to speak?

Walking with the LinkedIn founder

LinkedIn co-founder Konstantin Guericke for example, has been hiking with students for years and states: “Sharing special experiences together creates a bond.” That is why Guericke uses hiking specifically, for example to get to know applicants or start-up founders better. The one known from the Harald Schmidt show also joins the same horn Grimme Award winner Manuel Andrack: For him, hiking has a connecting element: "When hiking, you go deeper and talk about the essentials."

No wonder that many too Company regularly combining events with outdoor activities: For example, years ago I was at the Students on Snow, an event in Austria where corporations like Siemens or Bayer were on the lookout for young talent.

Reinhold Messner: The motivation of the team is decisive for the company's success

Even if it's primarily about fun, such recruiting or team building events are primarily used to bring teams closer together or to get to know applicants, because they encourage them Communication in the group. But the reactions in difficult situations are particularly interesting: for example, who will take over Guidewho is the opponent and who can submit well?

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Because later in the company it is also decisive how well and solution-oriented teams work together. Extreme mountaineer Reinhold Messner also knows the problem of the right team composition from his tours, which are about survival, as he explains in an interview:

"Common objectives are the basic requirement: I basically only went out with people who are the same Motivation like myself. Example of crossing the Antarctic: The leader is chosen by the group that instinctively decides on the strongest personality. There is a power struggle only when the strength of the leading person suffers a slump. "

Cooking as a team building instead of Mount Everest?

Now, not every company can go skiing or even climb Mount Everest, so that it is best to check their teams for joint suitability and the right target motivation even before recruiting. But there are alternatives that are just as challenging and much easier to implement. One of them: cooking.

Because at the desk as well as at the worktop, new, unpredictable situations challenge us every day. In order to be able to solve these together, promptly, inventive and successfully, it is important that all colleagues find their role and become one Team .

Eating as a basic need offers a lot of potential for conflict

Conflicts arise, similar to extreme sports, around very elementary questions: What are we cooking? Who kneads, braises, cuts, turns on the oven and when is it served? After all, food is a basic need that is an elementary and therefore extremely emotionally charged topic for all people. No wonder that stressful situations here can quickly froth the mind. And to moderate the collaboration between different characters and constellations and to reflect on them in stages - this is what it is all about when people are to be brought together to form a team.

Anyone who does not believe how well cooking can work in team building has never cooked a stressful “last minute CEO birthday menu” under the direction of Graciela Cucchiara with a team of individualists - and that is just one of their special tasks. For the native Argentine, known all over Germany from the SAT1 program "The Taste" and personally known to Tim Mälzer, nothing is closer than a metaphor for successful cooperation in the company. Her motto: "There is no problem in a company that I cannot work on in the kitchen."

Coaching by Cooking: This is how team building works in cooking

In their cooking garage, companies can therefore offer their Coaching Book by Cooking: Groups are specifically included in special training situations Konflikt- and improvisation potential and learn as a team to use individual strengths and to find solutions together. The companies define their goals together with the trainer in a preliminary discussion. After each individual training unit, there is a professional reflection on the immediate anchoring of learnings. Finally, you will receive a detailed target comparison and outlook from your trainer.

Even if Cucchiara works with different coaches depending on the objectives, she also brings a lot of life experience with her: At the age of seven, she began to cook in a mini kitchen next to her grandmother's stove in her native San Isidro near Buenos Aires. As a result, she lived in Argentina and Germany as well as in Italy and had several professions, from music therapist and photographer to graphic designer. In 2009 she founded the Kochgarage in Munich to combine all of this and to celebrate the fun of cooking together, cultures and good products.

Bringing teams closer together - does that really work?

And yet the question arises: How useful are team building measures anyway? In fact, there are also doubts about the effectiveness: "Real team building takes place in daily practice, nowhere else," explains the Coach and business economist Jörg Romstötter. Instead of extreme sport, he recommends: "Give your people the opportunity to regularly celebrate successes in their own specialist task."

In fact, as was the result of our discussion on the future of Personal, as mentioned above, team building events can neither replace recruiting nor a sense of achievement, but they do support a sense of community and corporate culture. This is becoming more and more important for companies that want to be successful in the long term. However, such events are more suitable than Employer Branding Measures, because as a full-fledged recruiting replacement.

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