Sitting in a room with almost 600 people in Orlando, my first Team Management and Leadership Weekend was pretty intimidating yet transformational. The leaders were incredible! They knew just what to say. I remember thinking, “Everybody is sharing and inspiring, everything has a meaning, but, what will my contribution be?” I was blank.
It was not too long ago that I was living in Prince George in Northern British Columbia. My kids and I would spend the entire day in the park playing “hide and seek”, roasting hot dogs on an open fire. The game, “Forest for the World” was played in a real forest with a huge lagoon in the middle. Some days we met black bears and moose – it was a pretty wild place. One day, another family joined us spontaneously to play. Wow! That created memories that I will never forget!
When I came back from Orlando all pumped up, I started enrolling a team for my Game in the World: creating Fun Raisers, a project where kids and their families would discover the fun in simply playing games outside together. My vision was that Fun Raisers would inspire other communities to follow in creating more Fun Raisers all over the world.
My team includes my son Klaus, 17, who came up with the name Fun Raisers. (What a huge contribution to this game!) Another team member is Jennifer, a real estate colleague. There is my friend, Michael, from whom I often seek wisdom and guidance and, my good friend, Raman, with whom we spend great times playing with our kids.
My game quickly picked up momentum as the team created newsletters and invitations and delivered them to thousands of people all over the world. Thanks to the internet, our message was received throughout the United States and Canada, as well as Mexico, South America, South Africa, and Japan.
To my surprise, at our first event, that first weekend of Fun Raisers, only four people showed up: Jennifer, her kids, Samuel and Olivia, and me. I thought, what is this? My friends Michael and Raman aren’t here? I thought I’d been being an “enrollment machine”! With coaching from my team, I realized that I had not been being enrolling at all. I had been doing what I do best: telling people what to do. That was my €˜team concept’. Clearly, it didn’t work!
I looked at where I’d been being inauthentic, the impact on me and on my team, and created the possibility of being vulnerable and open. I can’t believe the difference that made! Now, the project is moving forward. I can’t imagine where I’m going to be at the end of my first year on Team. I wake up every day excited about what it is that I – and my team – will discover.
Fun Raisers inspires me everyday. It is bringing people together around the world. We are making a difference!
— Eduardo Fritis, Team Vancouver