Conference Venue Spotlight – Noonaweena

Some conference venues offer outstanding facilities. Others, a quiet setting so you can get down to business. But what other unique conference venue gives you both at the same time? Noonaweena offers you the best of both worlds – and much more.

From Day-Only Conferences for larger groups to unique tailor-made Conference Packages that include overnight stays, Noonaweena offers exclusive private use of the venue for the duration of your stay. We can now accommodate up to 30 delegates on-site.

Audio-visual equipment can be easily booked and ranges from professional quality overhead projectors and screens to videos, DVD’s, lecterns and microphones. In fact, you name it, and we’ll either have it – or specifically obtain it for your conference!

And after you’ve worked hard, where else but Noonaweena offers such a wide range of activities? You’ll find horse riding, paintball, bush walking and golf all within easy driving distance. Closer to home, you can also enjoy team building activities, our undercover BBQ area and of course, our inviting pool that overlooks the stunning Yengo National Park.

Conference capacity overnight: 32

Day conference capacity: 50

Rooms: 16

Testimonials:

“Loved the balance between professional service and friendly informality. It is a beautiful facility staffed by fantastic people.”
– Jeff Mann

“Last week we held a small conference at Noonaweena and I have to say that our staff loved the “Noonaweena” experience. Many thanks for making their time out of the office so enjoyable.”
– SANITARIUM

Contact:

P. 02 4376 1290
E. [email protected]

Take 5 With Pinnacle – Amanda

If you’ve ever wondered what makes a Pinnacle Team Events facilitator tick then you have come to the right place! Each month we will be taking 5 minutes to chat with each of our facilitators about their lives both inside and outside of work.

How long I have been working for Pinnacle:
3 months and counting.

My favourite Pinnacle team event to facilitate:
The Amazing Race was the first event I did with Pinnacle so it’s the closest to my heart.

Most embarrassing moment as a Pinnacle facilitator:
When a participant drew me as a stick figure with spaghetti hair and told me it was a spitting image of me! Ummm no haha!

My favourite hobbies are:
Dancing, going for long drives, hikes and just being outdoors in amongst nature but also hanging out with friends.

Band I’m listening to at the moment/podcast recommendation:
I really enjoy most genres of music so it’s hard to pick just 1 band, but Boyce Avenue are a good one.

What was the last book you read?:
I’ve often got more than 1 book going at the same time and they’re all very different…at the moment it’s Spiral Dynamics Integral, Barefoot Investor and The Real Christ.

Favourite holiday?:
My trip to the USA a few years back when I got to see many places that I often see in the movies I watch. 

Have you ever had a nickname?:
Sooo many!! Manda, Mandy, Mandoo, Zak, A-man-dahh, Amanda-hug-n-kiss, Dudie, Dude, Alien and the list goes on…

I am frightened by _____ :
The seagulls in Sydney!!! They’re crazy and they have no fear!! 

Favourite movie of all time:
The Lion King…gets me every time! But also, Cool Runnings! Can still quote the whole movie.

First concert I went to:
There’s been so many I can’t remember the first one I went to. 

If you could live anywhere, where would it be?:
I’m still on the hunt to find my forever home but at this stage I’m pretty happy in Sydney. It has the best of everything, beaches, bush, suburbia, city, snow or mountain ranges only a few hours away…it’s got it all!!

What makes you angry:
When the people I love get treated badly by others. 

What makes you laugh the most:
Dad jokes! Or veryyy lame jokes.

What song would you sing at karaoke night?:
Can’t go wrong with the old 90’s and 00’s boy bands…e.g. Backstreet boys, Hanson, Nsync, Boyz II Men etc.

Adapting To & Embracing Change

We’ve all heard the old saying “the only thing constant in life is change”. And we know to be resilient, both personally and professionally, we have to adapt, innovate and face change head on. Change affects us all and we each deal with change differently. It’s only natural for people to fear the unknown and become stressed in a time of change, however it’s important that you try & keep an open mind & see change as an opportunity for growth.

Here is some practical advice on adapting to change in the workplace according to Bob Miglani, bestselling author of “Embrace the Chaos”:

1.  Accept the new normal.

Most people tend to idealise the past, however, holding on to the memory of how things once were is counterproductive when in a state of change. As our favourite song from the movie Frozen goes, “let it go!”. Miglani states, “Let it all go. Let go of the old promises, the way we used to work, the people we used to work with, and the kind of workplace we originally signed up for. Let it go because it doesn’t exist anymore”.

2.  Maintain a positive inner dialogue.

“Think more about the possibility than the impossibility”. It’s easy to feel negative towards a new procedure, particularly when we didn’t have an issue with the way things were already being done. Accepting a new point of view is not something that happens overnight, but maintaining the ability to view any potential change with a positive attitude is certainly integral to one’s capacity to adjust to new situations.

3.  Rework your goals and set out to achieve them.

By setting a clear goal for ourselves, we can bring about a wonderful new mind shift that helps to direct our energy that is often wasted in so much workplace change.

4.  Take charge of your own actions.

As in all aspects of life, there will always be factors within our careers which are not within our control. So, in a time of change we should focus on the tasks we can do.

5.  Avoid isolating yourself.

During times of change you should reach out to your support network. Not only will this help you remain plugged in to your evolving work environment, but it will also expose you to other perspectives, opinions, and even advice. Often, circumstances aren’t quite as dismal (or as unmanageable) as we envision them to be.

Everyone will face change at some point in their career whether it be a shift in technology, employment of a new staff member or a merger of teams. Any change, whether it’s positive or negative, can be stressful because it involves the unknown, and we tend to fear the unknown. Finding ways to not just ‘deal’ or ‘cope’ with change but EMBRACE this new challenge is the key to success!

Our top team building activities for embracing change include:

Bridge to Unity

A collaborative construction challenge! Teams must work against the clock to build a bridge whilst overcoming a shortage of resources and communication barriers. The real test sees ‘drivers’ assessing the bridge with remote controlled cars, will they succeed in creating the Bridge to Unity?

bridge

Escape the Room

Can your team escape? This exciting Escape the Room challenge is the ultimate team building event that will test the sharpest minds. Each team is “locked” in a room with a set time frame in which to escape before the world as we know it ceases to exist. Teams must follow the clues, solve the puzzles, unlock the secrets to ESCAPE! Teams race to uncover the 8 digit code that will ultimately set them free – will they do it in time?

Coded padlock with escape heading in the middle

Project Pipeline

In Project Pipeline, teams or ‘countries’ delegates must work together to build a Pipeline that stretches from one side of their country to the other, only using the materials provided. The catch – in order to do so they must barter and trade with neighbouring countries to obtain the materials needed. The aim is to build a complete Pipeline to transport a resource (a metal ball bearing) down the line. Countries will then be asked to join their Pipelines together for transportation of the resource across all countries.

Team Building Activity Debrief

Hosting a team building activity debrief provides an invaluable platform for the members of your team to acknowledge what they’ve learned about themselves, about others and their interactions with one another. Perhaps even more importantly, a debrief allows teams to identify the lessons that can be implemented to improve the way in which they work, whether that is in their communication, leadership or collaboration with others.

Team sitting around table solving a jigsaw puzzle

A study conducted by the Harvard Business Review showed that teams who host even an unstructured debrief have a 22% higher chance of succeeding than a team that didn’t do one. So, we can see that even a quick, informal debrief can have such a greatly positive impact on the way we do work. So why is it that most of our clients do not request a team building activity debrief?

First, consider the ‘WHY’

There are many reasons for wanting to organise a team building event. Some of the more popular reasons include: just have fun, getting to know each other & as a reward. For these outcomes, a team building activity debrief may feel out of place. There’s no particular need to debrief after an Amazing Race on what everyone learned as the lessons of collaboration, problem solving & communication are already embedded within the activity itself. Going over everyone’s experiences within the activity with a fine-toothed comb may feel like overkill for your delegates – especially when the overall goal was simply to have some fun & network.

On the other hand, if you have clear, defined outcomes for the team building activity such as building trust, coping with change, working as one team, leadership, effective communication etc. a debrief is vital in ensuring the team building activity is both meaningful & lasting.

The Debrief

An experienced facilitator will lead your team through more than just a play-by-play of what happened in the activity. Safe & productive discussions can be harnessed through well devised questions that connect your delegates experiences to your outcomes & goals for the activity. Generally, a debrief can be split into 3 main areas: what, so what and now what.

1: What? = Objective facts, the truth
You can begin with this style of questioning for any team building activity.

Describe your experience, what happened?
Who did what? (roles & responsibilities)
What did you see/feel?

2: So what? = Effects & subjective interpretation
After discussing ‘what happened’ you can move on to interpreting the effect certain actions had.

Why were you successful (or not)?
What did you discover about yourself?
How were differences in opinion handled?
Which behaviours/actions had the most effect on the team?

3: Now What? = Transfer of agreed learning & shared understanding
Following the ‘so what’ discussion you will move into discussing what can be learned from this experience & how it can be applied to future interactions.

How does this relate to something that occurs in our workplace?
What would we do differently next time?
What good practice can we take with us?
Where do we need to pay increased focus/attention?

If you’re interested in incorporating a team building activity debrief talk to us! We can link your set outcomes to the best activity and tailor the debrief questions to suit. We will help you find the lessons that will help your team be more productive & successful in the future.