BNZ Assess Performance in the Situation Room

Published on Jun 1, 2019


The Bank of New Zealand were looking for a business simulation that they could incorporate into a recent assessment centre as part of their internal recruitment process. The Bank of New Zealand is one of New Zealand leading Banking Intuitions since its inception in 1861. The assessment centre is designed to evaluate short listed candidates across several components such as individual interviews, group presentations, and within a team environment. The program needed to give assessors opportunity to observe participants, as well as, give opportunity for discussion, self evaluation and feedback.

The Solution

On the day, 24 delegates participated in experiential learning exercise The Situation Room across two separately facilitated sittings. The Situation Room, developed by Catalyst Global's New Zealand partners Team Up Events, is one of the newest cutting-edge business focused events. Themed around an emerging global situation, teams are challenged to assess and react to real time video link updates in order to provide accurate information on the What, Where, When, and Who of an illicit trade scenario.

Situation Room has been designed to stimulate and challenge thinking in a time limited, high pressure environment around the following key learning objectives :

  • Cross Functional Communication: Enhance beyond individual roles and levels to unite towards a common purpose and achieve success with clear, concise, and coordinated communication.
  • Agile Thinking: Encouraging and appreciating speed and flexibility to not only identify and adapt to more efficient and effective ways of working, but to also understand that the way of “today” may be totally different to the way of “tomorrow”
  • Situational Leadership: Identifying the behaviours required in the context of the group and environment to implement a leadership style which best delivers on the goals and circumstances of the task at hand.

On the countdown of the final program timer, participants were then guided through a team evaluation to reflect on performance before being invited to discuss learnings from their experience with the whole group.


The Situation Room provided an insightful opportunity for BNZ assessors to observe both personal and team traits, characteristics, and of course performance through the form of gamification. The common points of discussion highlighted from participants referred to the need for a coordinated approach in order to manage the many variables within the event. Participants realised that there was too much information for any one team member to comprehend. They also observed that there was limited time to assess the changing landscape of the situation. In order for the whole team to successfully balance speed with accuracy, therefore, they had to allocate roles and tasks swiftly and efficiency. The program was an enormous success for both assessors and participants.

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