Access Point Management Team Embark On An Arctic Adventure
A team of 10 somewhat nervous explorers from the Management Team headed off to the Arctic at the beginning of February for five days of dog-sledding in the snowy wilderness of Northern Sweden.
Landing on the snowy runway at Kiruna, Sweden’s most northerly airport, the team were instantly greeted with a taste of what was to come; a parking area designed specifically for dogs and over 30 Huskys barking away desperate to get started on the trail to take the visitors to the Mushers Lodge cabin that would be their accommodation for the night, and which kennelled over 250 specially bred Arctic dogs.
The next morning, after meeting their dogs and a brief lesson on how to drive the sled and handle their four strong dog team, the adventurers headed off on their first trek into the icy wonderland towards the wilderness cabin they would call home for the next few days, situated approximately 250km within the Arctic Circle. The cabin was a true rustic experience; heated by wood stoves and lit by candles as it has no running water or electricity.
The wilderness lodge, Camp Vakkarajaarvi
Once there, with a little help from their expert guides, they had to fend for themselves by collecting water, chopping wood and the most important chore of all, feeding, caring and pooper-scooping for the 44 dogs that were their only mode of transport.
After an afternoon of ice-fishing, which included having to drill holes in the frozen lake; there was opportunity to relax in the sauna, even braving an ‘Arctic Roll’ in the snow before a traditional Swedish meal of reindeer stew...good job there was a back-up as the ice-fishing attempt resulted in one small perch, hardly enough to feed everyone!
Drilling the ice to fish
Now more relaxed on the sleds, the following day saw the team heading back through the snowy pine forests and across vast frozen lakes before stopping for a picnic on the trail and a warm up in a traditional Sami tepee.
That evening there was a fantastic opportunity for post dinner drinks and games in a real life igloo, with most of the team even choosing to spend the night in the igloo; sleeping on reindeer skins under the ice for a true Arctic experience.
On the trail dog-sledding through forests and across frozen lakes
MD David Robertshaw says “Over time an idea grew and I thought that to achieve personal growth both within the team and with the rest of the company it would be necessary to remove ourselves from the office, I also wanted the Senior Team to work together more closely and for each to understand what makes up our team – this would not be achieved in a day making rafts in the Lake District!
It was also a chance for everybody to get to know each other on a personal level, living and working in very close proximity, carrying out tasks that require trust in each other. It was also a reward for helping Access Point have a fantastic couple of years.
By removing ALL of the Senior Team it was a great test for everybody left behind to run the ship and deal with any issues that arose. I needn’t have worried as they all performed fantastically well and who knows whose turn it may be next time….Watch this space!”
David’s goal was most definitely achieved with the management team leaving snowy Sweden feeling more connected and ready to push the company forward with the excellent team that got left behind....this time!
The Arctic Adventures in a traditional Sami tepee
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