be.boosted Team Seoul 2015 first meeting in Heidelberg.
Written by Rima-Maria Rahal
"Oh Heidelberg, you beauty"… there could hardly be any better place to kick-off the be.boosted Team Seoul’s offline training experience than this cozy city nestled into the Neckar valley, packed with history and great visions for the future. Against the backdrop of the castle ruins and the bustling Christmas markets, we spent a highly productive weekend and got to know the team face-to-face.
Although we had already spoken online with the team in weekly training calls for about a month, and met about half the delegation during our recruiting even in Munich already, our hearts beat faster right before seeing them as a group for the very first time. How would they interact, and would they be able to click as a team? As it turned out, we shouldn’t have spent a second’s thought on the matter: only seconds after team Seoul began to assemble in a seminar room at the Heidelberg Institute of Psychology, the air was full with friendly, buzzing chatter. Team cohesion further intensified as we pursued our common desire to get more exposure to all things South Korean: karaoke and original Korean food.
In addition, we took the chance to do some of the training that is really hard to tackle online: working on body language, voice, taking some first steps in negotiating and trying out how to do Model United Nations. To give the training an even bigger scope and a more intense twist, we invited the Heidelberg Model United Nations Society for a joint training session, simulating the United Nations Development Programme and focusing on high-level international solutions to promoting democratic governance and civic engagement. What a debate!
As the backbone of our offline weekend, carrying our training units in core leadership skills, we focused on matters of development assistance and international development collaboration. Working with the ShareHealth! project as a specific example, we developed ideas for managing and leading development projects at a grass-roots level. Taken together with our UNDP simulation providing the high-level perspectives of the north-south rift in development assistance, where we developed solutions to achieve development collaboration on eye-level and in true partnerships, this weekend gave us a holistic picture on what it takes to make development engagement successful.
When leaving Heidelberg, there sure was one thought we took home with us: staying "semper apertus" (always open) to new contacts, challenges, ideas and partnerships!
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