Saturday, September 12, 2009

Building Inspiration

One of my favorite childhood pleasures was to be on my hands and knees in the sand creating something. It was more fun working with a friend. I think it started with cookie cutters, plastic shovels and buckets in the little sandbox in my backyard. From the sandbox we moved to the seashore. Sometimes each of us modeled something on our own and other times we began creating collectively. But inevitably we ended up joining forces to build an extraordinary structure with towers, tunnels and trails, all the while secretly wishing it were possible for us to shrink in scale to the size of our creation.

If you've observed people building sand sculptures at the beach, you've seen teamwork in action.

The World Sand Sculptures Academy conducts training to show groups of people how to work together to sculpt some magnificent pieces of art.

Team members learn to value one another's capabilities and qualities and to implement them. The synergy of collective success creates an enjoyable and productive working environment.

Michael Hyatt, CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishing, has identified 5 ways to energize your team.
  1. Assume others are smart and working hard.
  2. Listen intently and ask thoughtful questions.
  3. Acknowledge the sacrifices others have made on your behalf.
  4. Express gratitude for their effort and their results.
  5. Remind them why their work is so important and the difference they are making.
Whether people are building a sandcastle, interacting in a marriage or working on a project in a job environment, these 5 concepts foster healthy progress. There is a goal and an interactive acknowledgment that things move ahead productively when people give as much as they receive.

Read Michael Hyatt's article on energizing your team at

More information about the World Sandsculpting Academy

Photo: Lars Christenen,