Posts Tagged ‘National Business Tourism Company of the Year’

Getting the Edge in Management Training

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

Do UK Companies Lag Behind?

UK companies lag behind their European counterparts when it comes to staff training, the Chartered Institute of Managment says.

In the early 1990s a plethora of management philosophies and buzzwords were born. International business media from Fortune to the Harvard Business Review published précis and analysis on hip topics such as emotional intelligence and the habits of highly successful people.

And then there was upskilling, the idea that no matter how successful you are, you should never stop the formal learning process. Upskilling took the business world by storm – particularly MBA providers – as companies introduced big training budgets and incentives to encourage employees to embrace continuous development.

But here’s the rub; upskilling was a great idea but in the UK, according the Chartered Institute of Management, no one really did anything apart from talk about it.

Results of 2 Year Study by Brunel School of Business and Management

In a two-year study done in conjunction with Birkbeck College and the Brunel School of Business and Management that was completed in May 2006, the institute found that UK organisations spend significantly less on training and development than all the other European countries studied bar Romania.

Despite a wealth of evidence that shows management development and business performance are integrally linked, UK companies do not appear to be acknowledging this connection, says CMI Chief Executive Mary Chapman.

“Unless business priorities are linked to training policies and practices for current – and future – leaders, there is a real danger that other European countries will leave the UK standing still,” Ms Chapman says.
Vocational Training

But it’s not just conventional academic or skill-based vocational training for individuals that’s important. Companies also need to address how more group training can enhance organisational dynamics to improve productivity and efficiencies.

A local company leading the way this area is the Brecon Beacons based Call of the Wild. The organisation provides tailor-made leadership and team development courses for a variety of clients, including several major UK blue-chips such as Orange and Vodaphone. Vodafone

Established in 1998, its three directors, Kevin Gould, Mark Soanes and Geraint Lewis, were all local lads who worked in senior management in a variety of professions throughout the UK and Europe before identifying a an opportunity to establish their own company in Wales.

In a nutshell, on the corporate side of its business, the company offers customised outdoor and indoor management development programmes based on clearly identified client needs.

“The types of areas they commonly want to look at are basic team building through to personal development and organisational change -sharing common goals, common purpose, open and frank communication – basically the structure and purpose of a good team,” Soanes explains.

Companies often go to Call of the Wild when there are problems with a dysfunctional team or they need to get a new team working efficiently.

The structure of the in-house training sessions – which usually run across three days – begins with theoretical modules that are then reinforced by experiential indoor or outdoor sessions, a review and then a follow-up in the workplace to check to see the learning has been applied.

Gould and Soanes say spend in corporate training is currently “by far” led by telecommunications industry, followed by software developers. They add that in their experience, when companies need to tighten their budgets, training is the first spending to be cut.

Indoor and Outdoor experiential training programmes are essential in order to highlight leadership skills and for the MD to see their team in action displaying those skills in an environment they weren’t used to and to illustrate how flexible they were in adapting their own particular leadership style.
Case Studies

One of Call of the Wild’s many satisfied repeat customers is Orbis Technology Ltd, which designs interactive gaming systems for clients including Ladbrookes, Ladbrokes BlueSquare and the Hard Rock Casino.

Based in Chiswick, West London, Orbis has just over 100 employees. Orbis’ training budget is work-specific, but the company recognises the bottom-line advantages of team-building training and leadership development.

“We used to have whole company-wide team building events in the past. Our MD wanted to introduce smaller groups to identify potential leaders within the company and Call of the Wild had the best range of scenarios,” says Tamara O’Sullivan, Orbis marketing and events coordinator.
“They created a search and rescue scenario for us where we had a mission to be achieved, to rescue a colleague who had been shot – a bit like from the movie ‘Behind Enemy Lines’, “O’Sullivan says.

The scenario combined navigation and orienteering skills, problem solving to earn the right to use particular pieces of equipment so they were able to rescue the survivor. Each participant took turns at being the group’s leader – an aspect of the training carefully managed by Call of the Wild’s facilitator to ensure no strong personalities dominated the exercise.

“It was very successful. We had very positive feedback from all those who participated and everyone obviously seemed to gain something from it – they appeared to come back more integrated. I do definitely think it brings a form of bonding into the team and the company,” O’Sullivan says.

“We did it for a specific business purpose and to see how people react in different surroundings, and that was achieved. But we also did it to give people the opportunity to get out of the office and enjoy themselves, to let them get to know other people in the company.”

“Training definitely increases productivity – without providing change and stimulus people become restless. As the company evolves we have to help our people evolve. This type of training revitalises them, which has ongoing benefits for the company. If the company is a happy one that’s got to give you an edge.”

For more information on our outdoor team building programmes visit this web page

If any of the above interest you, contact us now!

Awards and Accreditation

Monday, September 5th, 2011

Call of the Wild have the pedigree, experience, aptitude and above all a personable way of doing business with you. This is aptly demonstrated by the awards and accreditation the Company holds. This will provide reassurance for our customers that they are dealing with a unique company recognised for its outstanding performance and quality of service.


Leading Wales Awards 2010 Double Winners

Geraint Lewis from Call of the Wild has been named, not once but twice, as one of Wales’ top leaders. Geraint at Call of the Wild was recognised for his outstanding leadership in the Business Leadership Initiative in the Community and Leading Management and Leadership Skills Development for the Leading Wales Awards 2010. We were the only company to win two awards at the event which is unique.

SMARTA 100 Listed Company 2010 – Top Small Companies in the UK

Call of the Wild Ltd has been chosen by a judging panel including Deborah Meaden, of the BBC’s Dragon’s Den fame, and other leading entrepreneurs such as Bebo Founder Michael Birch as a winner of’s inaugural ‘Smarta 100’. Not only did Call of the Wild make the Top 100 Small Companies in the UK it was also voted in the Top 5 for its Business Ethics. The Smarta 100 is the ultimate business accolade, recognizing the UK’s smartest small businesses.

National Team Building Company of the Year 2008/09

In recognition of the quality of Call of the Wild’s work we are the current National Team Building Company of the Year 2008/09. This illustrates, as holders of this prestigious award, that our work in the fields of management training, team building, outdoor team building and leadership development is recognised as some of the best in the country.

Welsh Small Business of the Year 2008/09

This year, the final adjudication was carried out by an independent panel of judges including representatives from the Federation of Small Businesses, KPMG and the University of Glamorgan Business School. The award continues to honour and acknowledge the very best in Welsh Business. This award is to recognise the achievement of outstanding business performance in recent years. The company’s potential for growth, innovation and commitment to Wales was key to winning this much sought-after award.

Outstanding Training Organisation (Finalist) Barclays Finance Academy Suppliers Awards 2008

Named as one of the Outstanding Training Organisations in this must sought after prestigious awards from Barclays Bank. This was for our creative and innovative work with Barclays graduates. Our blended learning approach was commended for its fresh approach to gradutae development. This was a particularly pleasing acccolade given that it is recognition from one the World’ s foremost financial institutions.


Institute of Leadership and Management Accredited Centre

This accreditation further reinforces the quality and resources that Call of the Wild can offer our clients. This adds to our existing portfolio of programmes and allows us offer bespoke accredited ILM courses for our clients. ILM is the largest qualification awarding and professional membership body in Europe for management and leadership vocational qualifications. In 2006 around 80,000 managers registered for ILM Management qualifications and awards. The content of ILM programmes is linked to the latest management & leadership standards, ensuring relevant, current content and thinking.

Investors in People

Call of the Wild have almost completed our work towards obtaining the prestigious Investors In People Standard. The Investors in People Standard is a business improvement tool designed to advance an organisation’s performance through its people. Developed in 1990 by a partnership of leading businesses and national organisations, the Standard helps organisations to improve performance and realise objectives through the management and development of their people. Call of the Wild, being one the foremost training companies in the UK already provide innovative solutions for Companies to develop their people.

Visit Wales

Our training centre is accredited with Visit Wales (formerly known as the Wales Tourist Board)

The Environment Sustainability – Green Dragon Environmental Award

We are also keen to promote sustainable use of the environment so our programmes won’t cost the earth. The Company have already obtained a Level 2 Green Dragon Award for our commitment to sustainability and are working towards obtaining carbon neutrality status. Living Environment Call of the Wild are also keen to promote sustainable use of the environment, this means that our programmes won’t cost the earth. Amongst the solutions we have introduced include:

  •  Eco Showers
  •  Drinking water from our spring
  • Electricity from renewable sources
  • Recycling Facilities
  • Planting of 2,000 deciduous trees
  • Use of bio-fuel for vehicles

Adventure Activities Licensing Service

We are also licensed with the Adventure Activities Licensing Service.

Institute For Outdoor Learning

Call of the Wild are also members of the Institute For Outdoor Learning . This organisation seeks to promote and further the cause of learning utilising an outdoor environment.

Swansea Bay Regional Business Award

Saturday, November 27th, 2010

Call of the Wild Excel at Business Awards 2010

The Swansea Bay Regional Business Awards gala evening was held on 26th November 2010 at the Brangwyn Hall, Swansea. Call of the Wild were delighted to be named by judges as the winner of the Leadership & Management in Business Award.

These prestigious awards seek to recognise success, innovation and excellence across all industry sectors. (more…)

Winner Visit Wales National Tourism Awards 2010

Monday, October 25th, 2010

Winner of the Business Tourism Award

The National Tourism Awards for Wales gala evening was held on 21 October at the Vale Resort, Cardiff . Almost 400 applications were received and 53 organisations made it to the final competing for 16 awards . The winners were announced by TV presenter, Sarra Elgan.

The awards are about showcasing the very best that Wales has to offer and showing what can be achieved through hard work, ingenuity and commitment. (more…)

Leading Wales Awards 2010 Winners

Monday, March 8th, 2010

A Real Leader from Call of the Wild is Making a Difference in Wales

Geraint Lewis from Call of the Wild was last week named, not once but twice, as one of Wales’ top leaders at a prestigious ceremony at Cardiff’s Hilton Hotel.

Geraint at Call of the Wild was recognised for his outstanding leadership in the Business Leadership Initiative in the Community and Leading Management and Leadership Skills Development for the Leading Wales Awards 2010. We were the only company to win two awards at the event which is unique. (more…)