In July 2018 MSP worked with Shop Direct to plan and deliver the inaugural Shop Direct Games. The Shop Direct Games allowed employees from across their Liverpool and Greater Manchester based sites to take part in a multi-sport event and a five-a-side football competition in order to improve their employee’s health and wellbeing.
Shop Direct’s ambition is for their team to be the healthiest, happiest and most fulfilled that they can be. They believe that healthy people are happy people, and happy people will deliver for their customers every day. 164 employees came along in teams from Shop Direct’s eight work sites, in addition to them inviting their charity partner for the year (the Whitechapel Centre) to join them in the football competition. The event was inclusive and beginner level, allowing people of all ages and abilities to get involved, with 31% of participants not meeting the minimum physical activity guidelines prior to attending.
MSP worked with local NGBs and sports clubs to invite coaches and volunteers to lead inclusive sports tasters. A variety of multi-sports were selected based on participants being able to develop their communication and teamwork skills, taking part in athletics, dodgeball, rugby, softball, tennis and ultimate frisbee – as a result, 89% of participants tried a new sport for the first time.
Participants were provided with information about how they could carry on playing sports that they had tried in their local community – one employee told us, “My experience of taking part was very enjoyable; it’s made me realise that I must give stuff a go and challenge myself. I loved the feeling of what I’d achieved at the end of the day, taking part in sports I would not normally have even given a go. The celebration at the end where everyone got together was very uplifting; I was buzzing for days I took this feeling back to site, telling everyone what a fabulous day we all had!”
At the end of the event, each participant was presented with a medal and the winning teams from the multi-sports and football competitions with a trophy. Six employees were also picked out with ‘Spirit of the Games’ awards, who were deemed to show great ‘sportsmanship’ and attitude in line with Shop Direct’s core values.
MSP have a long established working relationship with the Shop Direct Group, having previously worked collaboratively with our counterparts in Greater Manchester, Greater Sport, to deliver Physical Activity Champion training to 49 Shop Direct employees and organising various inclusive activity challenges.
Gill Appleby (Group Head of Engagement at Shop Direct) said after the event, “MSP has made a massive contribution to our wellbeing strategy. It’s a real partnership, from ideas and inspiration to event support and practical advice. They’ve helped us with simple and sustainable lifestyle changes that anyone can adopt. Their support to deliver our first ever Shop Direct Games, in particular, was invaluable – we’d recommend MSP to any company looking to put more focus on colleague wellbeing.”
In addition to improving employee health and wellbeing and aligning to their corporate values, Shop Direct also used the Shop Direct Games as an opportunity to promote their corporate social responsibility externally. As a result, photos and videos from the event posted on LinkedIn resulted in their most successful ever campaign with over 19,000 impressions.
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