Terra Nova™

This event is led by our associate, Mitch Fairrais

A Simulation that…

  • Terra NovaCreates a culture of execution and action.
  • Shows how to align goals, plans, and activities to support implementation.
  • Overcomes people’s focus on their narrower goals and perspective at the expense of the common vision.
  • Fosters accountability at every level: individual, team, and organization.
  • Raises awareness of the high level of performance that is possible when we integrate our efforts.

“We invited Fulcrum Associates to participate in our 2010 annual sales meeting. Their team building exercise, Terra Nova, was one of the highlights of the meeting. The exercise was entertaining, instructional and reinforced the fact that cross functional teamwork is the key to the sustained success of any great organization.”

– Kevin Fiori, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Sunkist Growers Inc.

The Setting…

Three pioneering guilds have been commissioned to develop a new community called Terra Nova. The guilds, each with its own values and priorities and accountable for its own specific goals, have come together to make this vision a reality.

  • Rulers, with their passion for achieving what’s possible.
  • Entrepreneurs, concerned with maximizing cash flow.
  • Builders, the hands-on, operation-focused, pragmatists.

Guilds share a common mission: Make Terra Nova Prosper! Despite this shared mission, however, there is a high probability of friction among guild teams as each labors on its own portion of the project. As a consequence, quality suffers, conflicts surface, and bottlenecks emerge.

If the participants overcome these obstacles, they end up building a three dimensional city that can span a room. Their individual and collective challenge is to align their own goals and activities with those of the other guilds in order to generate remarkable results.

The Learnings…

Terra Nova

Aligning Goals, Plans and Activities

It is not enough that an individual or group has clear goals and achieves them. For consistently superior results, the activities of all stakeholders must be aligned with one another and with the vision of the organization.

Managing Relationships

Aligning goals and activities requires us to work effectively with others. This calls for listening, expressing our own point-of-view and managing perceptions-ours and theirs. The ability to reach common solutions under the pressure of time and performance demands is at the root of effective organizations.

Accountability for the Environment

We are all accountable for a work environment that generates sustained results and long-term profitability. We should first understand how our actions impact the work process and what others need. Then we can dialogue about how, together, we can make the work flow more efficiently.


The bottom-line is the bottom-line! In the end, we must convert our awareness of issues and our strategies for dealing with them into effective action. This includes admitting the reality of a strategy or approach that is no longer working and finding a more effective way to operate.

The Event…

Terra Nova is a fast paced, competitive, and high-energy experience for ten to several hundred participants. The simulation, which includes a series of real-time, quarter-by-quarter debriefs plus a 30-60 minute wrap-up, requires 3 1/2 to 4 hours.

The program works well in a full-day format where there is more time to apply key lessons from the event to your particular challenges. It is easily integrated into a training course, a conference program, or to anchor a departmental planning meeting.

A powerful feature of Terra Nova is the real time debriefs that take place during the event. Participants have an opportunity to take a look at how they are performing, extract valuable insights, and then make immediate adjustments to improve their individual and team effectiveness going forward in the simulation. In other words, they turn awareness into effective action.

Each quarter of play highlights a different stage of team or organizational development: Forming, Storming, Norming, & Performing. Participants experience first the feeling of struggle and then the success that comes from executing brilliantly.

Created by FloWorks


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