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Should you Host an Off-Site Company Retreat?

We’ve discussed in previous posts (here and here) how to plan and host a successful off-site company meeting or retreat. The topic for today is: should you host an off-site company retreat to begin with? Is it worth the time, effort and cost?

The simple answer to that question is Yes.

If planned and organized smartly, with thoughtful consideration of what you want to accomplish, an off-site company retreat can lead to several positive outcomes. For instance:

Team building and bonding

Here’s the thing—there are team building and bonding activities you can do off-site that you cannot do in your employee break room. Uniting your employees to accomplish a common goal as a team, from a ropes course to a challenging mountain hike, bonds them together as a team. It’s human nature to feel good about winning, and winning as a team is sure strengthen their bond.

Face to face

Often, employees who work in the same building, on the same floor or even in nearby cubicles, don’t actually get that much face to face interaction. By working as a team, those employees become naturally drawn together during problem solving and communication activities. The benefits of people getting to know, and learning to trust, their fellow employees can be far reaching. You may even see leadership qualities emerge in individuals that you didn’t know existed.

Get inspired

We’ve all experienced mind-numbing, hours-long brainstorm sessions that are barely brain drizzles. Staring at the same four walls of the same conference room week after week can really dampen creativity. Thinking outside the box, and actually getting outside the box into a fresh new environment may just jumpstart your employee’s collective creativity. Plan your retreat for somewhere exciting, exhilarating and even transformative. Or, take it in a completely different direction and go for comfy, cozy and life affirming. Whichever you choose, a break in routine can be just the thing to inspire creativity.

Goals and focus

Employees stuck in a rut, working nose to the grindstone, sometimes stop seeing the forest for the trees. They lose the ability to focus on the big picture, and can lose sight of company goals. Plan a retreat that brings your entire group together to re-emphasize existing goals, or set new ones that are attainable with teamwork. By meeting together away from the office, away from ringing phones, cold-calling salesmen and all the small, daily time drains, you’ll refocus energy in a positive direction.

Bonus tip: A little appreciation goes a long way

Give some thought to building an employee appreciation component into your retreat. An excellent group meal can be a bonding experience all by itself, even if it seems to have nothing to do with your business. A thoughtful swag bag for each employee doesn’t have to be expensive to build goodwill. If it’s February in Minnesota and your parking lot is buried in two feet of snow, scheduling the retreat for somewhere warm and sunny might be just the ticket. The point is, an off-site retreat is a great way to say thanks and also net positive goals.

Give Professional Travel a call today, and discover how our travel management services can help you with off-site company retreat planning.

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