Outdoor adventure training is a new experiential training that is becoming a topic for research. This training is a development technique for leadership and team-building that is set in an outdoor setting involving mental and physical exercises for the trainees (Williams, Graham, & Baker, 2003). The objectives of outdoor adventure training include team-building and increasing trust, as well as improving of leadership skills, problem solving skills, and communication. These abilities are considered to be highly beneficial to organizational and employee success. The focus of training like outdoor adventure training is to develop the person as a whole, not only the behavior of the person (Dranitsaris & Hilliard, 2013).
The use of outdoor adventure training is being shown to be an excellent leadership and team building training program. This training is more interesting than traditional methods like observational learning techniques. Adults have been shown to be more likely to learn new things when they are able to link learning to personal experiences (Williams et al, 2003). Outdoor adventure training can be helpful in enhancing self-awareness, improving interpersonal skills, building teams, and changing attitudes in regards to teamwork. Trainees should be able to become more aware of teammates and personal strengths and weaknesses, increase self-esteem and self-efficacy, improve management of conflict, and build a stronger organizational commitment (Williams et al, 2003).
Some of the many advantages of using training like outdoor adventure training are the experience the trainee can build, observe, and reflect upon. Also, the trainee may be able to conceptualize and generalize the new experiences as well as use the generalizations in new situations (Williams et al, 2003). The skills that many leadership and team-building developmental programs aim for are able to be accomplished with this type of training. Challenges in these programs require risk taking and decisiveness which strengthens leadership skills. Also, the novelty and variety of these challenges enhance problem-solving skills. Lastly, team-building skills are enhanced through challenges that exact team members to learn how to rely on one another in order to succeed (Williams et al, 2003).
In order to be a successful training program, the programs will need to be evaluated for effectiveness and relevance. Kirkpatrick’s taxonomy is a useful evaluation technique for training program measurements. Kirkpatrick believed that training is an endeavor which is multifaceted (Levy, 2013). In this approach, there are four criteria that are evaluated: reaction, learning, behavioral, and results. The reaction criteria focus on the trainee’s attitudinal reactions to the training program. Learning criteria looks at the amount of material that is actually learned in the program. These criterion can be measured in terms of cognitive outcomes, which is how much knowledge has been learned, skill-based,...