Outdoor Education R&E Center

Team Building

Outdoor & Adventure Programs for
Team Building, Management Training & Corporate Development

James Neill
Last updated:
25 Oct 2006




What's new?

NOTE: These  terms are often used interchangeably

  • Corporate Adventure Training (CAT)
  • Experience-based Training & Development (EBTD)

  • Outdoor Management Development (OMD)

What is all this hype about adventure-based training?

In the mid-late 1980's and early 1990's there was a boom in the use of adventure-based training for purposes of corporate development.  The novelty and excitement of a zip line and thrill of rappelling stimulated many possibilities for learning.  But there were also the perceived risks, the challenge to get employees to participate, the cost, the time involved, and a lack of conclusive evidence.  There was also no standardization or qualification system for outdoor adventure trainers.  And it only takes a couple of programs to get some bad press to make it difficult to sustain growth for a new field. 

Corporate adventure training was a new field with much promise.  The boom has since plateaud and matured in its professionalism.  The evidence supporting the positive outcomes of outdoor education, including applied to corporate settings has been largely supportive (Read a summary of the effects of outdoor education).  Adventure-based training is perhaps the most underutilized training method with some of the greatest potential.  There are a wide variety of possible application of adventure training.  According to research and theory there are at least 11 major factors that seem to influence the effects of an adventure training program.  Read more about the 11 factors that matter...

Videos about corporate development through outdoor adventure

Outdoor adventure team building (8 mins)

Call of the Wild Adventure Consultants

Adventure race training programs for corporate development (8 mins)
- Corporate Adventure Training

Two basic arguments: Pro & Anti adventure-based training

There are two characteristic schools of thought about the value of outdoor adventure training for corporate and managerial development:

Pro: Outdoor management development programs offer powerful learning and change opportunities for enhancing corporate and management effectiveness

Anti: The corporate adventure training fad has come and gone -- it only offered adventurous hype with little relevant to corporate training, and, largely-speaking, not work the costs and risks associated with it.

In order to better inform these two common viewpoints, there have been several studies worth of note.  Go to research findings...

Tools which can enhance Corporate Adventure Training programs