When it came to building their teams, people at Bilfinger were determined to not just improve themselves but to also do something for others. They soon found the right project: “Helping Hands,” a charitable initiative that benefits the victims of land mines and accidents. The idea behind “Helping Hands” is to provide injured persons with a hand prosthesis, free of charge. “We were looking for a project where we could make a direct contribution to society and where we could be sure that what we do reaches the right people,” explains Julia Schäfer of the Talent Management Team at Bilfinger.
During the team-building process, small groups of people work together to assemble their very own “helping hand,” using a simple instruction manual and basic materials consisting of roughly 30 individual parts. Given that many of the assembly steps require three people to execute the work, the colleagues must rely on one another. What is more, each member of the team works with one hand only. “This is when it really hits you: the challenges people face in daily life who have only one hand,” comments Ciara Glen, HR Administrator at Bilfinger Tebodin.
After the team event, each individual helping hand prosthesis is shipped for quality inspection and functional testing to the United States, where the Helping Hands parent organization is headquartered. The organization’s end-to-end strategy encompasses the entire production cycle required for the devices, from research and development to fabrication and quality control; it also organizes their distribution through Rotary International, so as to prevent them from being sold on the black-market or otherwise misused.
So far, Bilfinger’s “Helping Hands” campaign has turned out 16 hand prostheses. But this is just the beginning. The team-building event has been going so well that it will be rolled out internationally!