Business runs a little differently in Kitchener-Waterloo. It’s no secret by now that Canada’s “Tech Triangle” is one of the best places in the world for startup technology companies, despite competition from bigger cities outside Silicon Valley like Boston, Toronto, and London. The culture of startups is a little different from traditional businesses. They’re usually focused around a tightly knit staff that spends most of its days in the same open concept room together. When it works, it can be a powerful dynamic for churning out demanding projects with near-impossible deadlines. Sometimes, you have to give your staff some time to breathe together or reward them for pulling off a major win.
When your business is innovation, you can’t settle for the usual when it comes to team building activities. Fortunately, KW is starting to see some original event venues and restaurants opening up as tech workers, entrepreneurs, and a burgeoning student population make the city a more exciting, urban place to live. The tri-cities are changing fast to catch up with the lifestyles of its new workforce and younger residents. From the Kaufman lofts to southern barbeque smokehouses, Kitchener-Waterloo offers more than it ever has. If you’re looking to reward your crew, KW now has a place where you can go to learn how to throw axes and compete against each other in a tournament. It’s a laid-back experience that lets coworkers relax, enjoy themselves, and pick up a few (esoteric) tricks when it comes to axe throwing.
Crews are already pretty close thanks to the collaborative development philosophies many popular with many startups. After struggling through enough sprints together, your crew already works as one and probably breathes as one. You already spend most of your waking hours together, so your office party will have to go a little further than drinks after the workday. Axe throwing combines precision, competition, and physicality to let off steam and unscramble the brain. It can also release competitive dynamics in a positive, healthy way.
The Backyard Axe Throwing League, or BATL, opened in Kitchener in 2015 and has been handling office parties, birthdays, and stag nights ever since. Located at Agnes and Park, it’s walking distance from the Tannery and right between both downtown Kitchener and uptown Waterloo. Their private events run between two and two and a half hours, which includes an instruction period and a wicked competition that will see every member of your group go head-to-head with one another. To treat your startup crew to something different, swing by Batlgrounds.com/team-building/.
Before you book, you should know that this kind of axe throwing isn’t the kind of thing you’d see at a lumberjack competition. The rules have been simplified and the target streamlined. The game offered by BATL isn’t about complications, it’s just about kicking back and devastating some targets. This is a critical early stage for your company, and it should be a memorable one for more than just the long hours and maddening scrum boards. Book a night that’s a little out of the ordinary for your staff soon.