Executive Oasis

Inc. Inc.: Breaking Down Silos
Team Building by Executive Oasis International

Survive, Thrive, & Grow Even in the Midst of Turbulence

Inc. Inc. Breaking Down Silos

Cross-functional teamwork, communication, and collaboration are essential for the implementation of many organizational initiatives. Yet, as companies grow and become more complex, there is a tendency for employees to become entrenched in silos.

Lockdowns and work from home orders due to COVID-19 have deepened this entrenchment.

In this highly customizable and scalable simulation, we place participants in roles that are very different from their current organizational roles.

We have facilitated Inc. Inc. Breaking Down Silos for teams as small as 6 and large groups with team members from many departments.

Inc Inc

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Inc. Inc.: Breaking Down Silos was designed out of our founder and President’s experience working at a fast-paced organization that was going through a merger. It is designed for teams that need to clarify roles and expecations or companies that need to improve their ability to work harmoniously across departments and branches.

We have had executives and frontline employees participate in the same session and switch roles. It greatly enhances communication between areas like sales, warehouse, marketing, IT, and adminisration. Engineers have enjoyed the contruction simulation. We have had participants share the fact that, for the first time, they have a clear picture of the roles of other departments.

This simulation is designed for dynamic organizations experiencing a high rate of change. Highly stable organizations with little change and a slow pace may not find this simulation relevant.

Wilderness Survival – Canada Team Building


Through this cross-functional team building simulation, organizations can:

  • break down silos
  • launch cross-functional teams
  • bring teams together after a merger
  • improve cross-functional teamwork and collaboration
  • prepare for a merger, re-organization, or corporate culture shift
  • transform team leader/team member interactions

Some of the companies that have benefited from Inc. Inc.: Breaking Down Silos have included Bell Mobility, CIBC, Dubai World/Nakheel’s IT Center, Goldwell, Ontario Service Centres, and Toronto Children’s Chorus.



After running simulated organizations for 1 1/2 – 3 hours, a professional facilitator will debrief the experience with your team.
Participants will walk away with:

  • a greater understanding of the challenges of other departments
  • an appreciation of the role of team leaders
  • an improved ability to put themselves in the customer’s shoes by playing the role of a
  • client in the simulation
  • new tools and strategies to improve cross-functional team work, and collaboration

Participants will significantly improve their ability to achieve results and execute projects within a short time-frame.

Meeting at the Oasis – Meeting Facilitation


Your facilitator will take you through a 1-hour pre-briefing to ensure that the links between Inc. Inc. Breaking Down Silos and the challenges your team and organization face are clear.

Next, the team leaders who have been selected for this simulation will brief team members about their roles, responsibilities and assignment.

After the simulation, guided by key questions, team leaders and the members of each department will spend time reflecting on their experience. Your facilitator will help you debrief the experience through 3 panels, one for each layer of the organization.

Virtual - Oman

Virtual Team Building

This simulation is now available virtually via any online platform of your choosing (e.g. Zoom, MeetinVR, Virtway, Second Life).

Teams will be moved into virtual breakout rooms to complete their assignment.

A modular format is recommended for virtual delivery.

Face-to-face Agenda

Face-to-Face Agenda

Team Building:

  • 8:30 Session Starter (in trios)
  • 8:45 CEO Briefing (15 min.)
  • 9:00 Group Briefing by Facilitator (45 min)
  • 9:45 Break
  • 10:00 Team Briefing (by team leaders)
  • 10:30 Simulation Begins
  • 1:00 Lunch (in teams
  • 2:00 Debriefing Prep.
  • 2:30 Debriefing Panels
  • 3:15 Break
  • 3:30 Business Application Exercises or Launch of Cross-Functional Teams
Jungle Survival Team Building Simulation

Chocolate Factory

Available in Toronto Only

Suitable for small groups

Guaranteed to please the chocoholics in your group, this highly interactive simulation of a chocolate factory will involve your team in designing a marketing strategy for your chocolate factory and manufacturing chocolate truffles and, if budget permits, other delectable goodies.

A professional facilitator will brief your team and debrief the whole experience to glean valuable take-aways to enhance the ability of your team to work effectively when they return to work.

Please note this is a fully facilitated team building simulation. It is not available for recreation only.

Christmas Shoeboxes

Available only from September to November. Shoeboxes are donated to a charity for children from underprivileged and war torn areas.

Construction Inc.

Uses Lego or 3-D Building puzzles to simulate a construction company.

Virtual - USA

Team Building with Toys

A range of simulations using toys (e.g. assembling puzzles, toy kitchens, workbenches, scooter, model airplanes, remote control cars).

Restaurant Inc.

A cooking team building simulation in which teams develop a theme for a restaurant, develop a menu, prepare presentation plates of signature dishes from their sample menu for judging, and develop a promotional campaign.

Christmas Hampers

Assemble of hampers with toys and non-perishable food for donation to charity

Regional Profile – Europe Team Building

Bike Simulation

Through this simulation of a bicycle factory, team assemble bicycles that are then donated to charity.

The Ice Factory

Teams create ice sculptures in this simulation of an ice factory.

Dollhouse Factory

Teams compete to build dollhouse and furniture. Doll houses are donated to charity. Requires at least 1 1/2 days as glue must dry.

Virtual Cooking Challenges - Cooking



  • Participant profiles & learning surveys distributed a few week before team building.
  • Team leaders and teams selected


  • Pre-con meeting with venue to review set-up requirements. (We handle this.)
  • Day Before Simulation: Pre-Briefing for Team Leaders & Set-up

Pre-Briefing: This simulation works best if team leaders are briefed about their roles the day before the simulation. If they participate in setting up the area for their team, this will save both money and time.




This simulation requires 3 rooms: an executive lounge, a manager’s meeting room, and a large room that can be divide into departments. Each room requires a flip chart and each team requires a flip chart or flip chart paper.

Prep: A colour printer will be needed for the marketing department to produce collateral material and internal department to produce communiques to be distributed during the simulation. (It can be a shared printer for all teams or 2 printers so that each team that requires it has a dedicated printer.)

The best leaders will break out of silos and improve workplace culture

Rosabeth Moss Kanter (Harvard Business School)

What our Clients Say About Us

Inc. Inc.

Maurice Benatar, Vice President Business Development & Marketing, Mayhew (Toronto)

Anne organized a cooking event, meeting, and dinner. She totally nailed the venue choices, presented interesting options, and was instrumental in helping making the event a success. Anne brings unique event ideas and a professional approach to event planning.

Maurice Benatar
Vice President Business Development & Marketing, Mayhew (Toronto)

Doug Wyatt, Director, Novo Nordisk Canada

Very different and unique. A different kind of team building … Excellent team building.

Doug Wyatt
Director, Novo Nordisk Canada

Julie Morgan, EMD Serono Canada

The ambiance was great and the facilitator was helpful and her comments were positive yet constructive.

Julie Morgan
EMD Serono Canada

Inc. Inc.: Breaking Down Silos Team Building Phases

  • Orientation and Team Briefing
  • Simulation
  • Debriefing
  • Business Application
  • Exercises

Orientation and Team Briefing

After a presentation by your CEO or VP to set the organizational context of the simulation, we will provide an orientation focusing on the challenges of our turbulent economy and the importance of cross-functional teamwork. Then, during the team briefing we will prepare your team for the simulation, assign roles and responsibilities, and introduce the toolkit that you will be using.


Your team will dive right in and operate two companies or 1 company with 2 divisions. Over the course of a business cycle (ideally 4 quarters), the company will operate under one of two scenarios (see below). There will be currency and regular customer attitude surveys to measure and track company performance. Your business challenges will be built into the simulation. The terminology and jargon used in the simulation will also reflect your corporate culture.


Each team will have specific deliverables and a set of objectives to meet. The simulation is set up so that no team can achieve its objectives without breaking down silos and collaborating with other groups.


Then, we will debrief the simulation thoroughly and glean key learnings about working in a cross functional environment and overcoming the silo mentality.

Business Application Exercises

In the 2-day version, we will re-configure the teams and assign a specific business issue or challenge that your organization is facing to each team. Each team will analyze the business issue using the simulation toolkit and prepare a mini-presentation to present their findings. Next steps will be developed and a follow-up plan will be formulated for the teams to continue to meet when they return to the office.