“Football is, literally, a level playing field,” said
Designed to promote co-operation and collaboration across the entire
Rather than the savage contest we’re likely to see between teams in Brazil, Ben emphasised the co-operative nature of the game. An experienced player who had previously competed in premier league level in the local competition, Ben wanted to impart some of his skills to the rest of his team. “I wanted to make sure that people in my team really enjoyed the experience, and that we didn’t take it so seriously that we forgot about why we were doing it,” he said.
It was an approach that saw Ben named Best and Fairest. “I was actually surprised by that, because I wasn’t the best player by a long shot,” he said. “I think that, at least within my team, I made an effort to make sure that everyone felt included. It was nice to be recognised for that.”
Apart from reinforcing social ties with colleagues, Ben believed that the relaxed nature of the games improved his performance back at work. “I got to meet people from other parts of the business that I don’t have direct day-to-day contact with,” said Ben. “It created friendships, and beyond the tournament, those friendships now are evolving into better relationships in the business.”
The tournament’s organiser, public relations manager Bobbie Crothers, agrees. “I’m really amazed at how it helped to build stronger relationships between the associates,” she said.
Despite their best efforts, the Aussie teams were beaten out by a team from