Steps challenges for companies, first presented during the quarantine in the spring of 2020, became a global phenomenon of an active lifestyle. In the last 6 months alone, the app has created over 400 private step challenges for companies with tens of thousands of participants from almost 40 countries, the most active of which were Sweden, the United Kingdom, Norway, the USA, Germany, Latvia, and, of course, Lithuania. However, perhaps most surprising is the fact that challenges have become a tool that allows companies to travel virtually when they can’t do it live.
The seemingly simple functionality that encourages fun steps competition, has become a way to foster the values of healthiness, sustainability, and ecology within the community, enliven the work atmosphere and unite colleagues who have distanced themselves in the context of quarantine. According to Vlada Musvydaite, the founder and CEO of the mobile app #walk15, the most active and successful are those challenges whose goals and ideas are familiar to the whole team.
“Private challenges have become a proven tool for many companies to foster community, company values , and health. We find that in order for a challenge to involve the majority of the team, it must be acceptable to all. In other words, everyone has to get involved and compete – from the top-level manager to the company’s newcomers, while the goal of the challenge must correspond to the company’s internal communication culture and atmosphere,” says V. Musvydaitė.
Where do companies travel?
The primary function of private-step challenges allows companies to pursue two main goals. First, encourage employees to walk and to take care of their physical and emotional health. Second, swap your car for walking, grow virtual trees in the #walk15 app, reduce your CO2 footprint, promote sustainability and ecology.
What is more, with more and more companies joining the app, challenges have also become fun virtual team trips. In the face of challenging travel conditions, companies invite their employees to reach the most exotic countries or the most ambitious challenges virtually, measuring them all in steps.
• Travel around the world. Large, ambitious companies tend to embark on a month-long or longer virtual step-trip with the goal of walking around the world. And sometimes – not once or twice! Achieving this goal together is not as difficult as it may seem at first glance – in total, the teams need to beat 50 million steps.
• Visits to company offices in different countries. A popular trend of step challenges in the lines of international companies is virtual step trips to the company’s offices in other countries. In this way, during the quarantine, communication is maintained not only within the team but also with colleagues abroad. As an additional tool, mobile app developers provide an opportunity for challenge participants to send informational messages informing them about the attractions of cities or company offices reached in virtual steps.
• Extreme challenges. Strong challenges – unite. This team logic is also perfectly applicable to the goal of the company’s steps challenge. The more ambitious it becomes, the more interesting it is for the team to step in and pursue it. Among the most popular in the app so far is a virtual climb to mountain Everest.
• Exotic, distant countries. It is not uncommon for companies to choose holiday destinations that create pleasant associations for their challenge. Unable to travel live, virtually teams walk up to Paris, Hawaii, Australia, or even the Far East. The selected direction is calculated by the step distance that falls in the challenge table of the mobile app.
• Work directions. Many companies operating in the international market often choose the work directions that create fun associations within the team. For example, a virtual trip to the company’s main suppliers in China, with the witty expectation that it will be faster than waiting for shipments to arrive in the usual way.
No matter what direction or the goal is set by the company, the developers of the mobile app motivate them to take steps by additional means. It is common to gather the most active walker of the challenge each week, and at the end of the challenge – the most active participants or teams.
The average number of steps per day is growing
V. Musvydaite, the founder of the app #walk15, notices that the challenges of the steps become not only an important tool for internal communication and team building but also an effective tool in shaping daily walking habits.
“During this period, we are also seeing a significant increase in the average number of daily steps taken by app users. Before quarantine, it reached about 4,000 steps, and today one user on average walks 4,500 thousand steps per day. We believe that one of the main reasons for this growth is the motivation created by the challenges of the steps,” says V. Musvydaite.
An unlimited number of team members can participate in the private challenge of the company – from just a few to several hundred or even thousands. Depending on the structure of the company and the purpose of the challenge, the company’s representatives can join it individually, taking steps each for themselves, or by going in teams – for their department or division.
International and Lithuanian companies such as Vinted, Adform, Paysera, Iki, Mitnija, Drogas, Girteka, Lietuvos geležinkeliai, Transunion, Bitė, Regitra, and hundreds of others have already used the functionality of private steps challenge for companies.
In the context of the challenges, the use of the app in the international market has also increased significantly. Today #walk15 is in active use in nearly half a hundred countries around the world, and app developers count an average of 5,000 user growth each week.
For companies looking to create their steps challenge, it is enough to fill in a short e-form located HERE.