The company retreat. This can be a wonderful way to team-build, to discuss and troubleshoot issues, and brainstorm new or better ways to do business. They can be fun and rewarding for your team. They can also set your team backwards if not done right.
Check out this letter, How To Retreat From The Company Retreat, written to Dear Prudence, printed on Slate.com. When planning a company retreat, there are a lot of things to consider but always remember that you never want your employees to feel uncomfortable about your upcoming company retreat. When planning activities, things like drinking games may make those who can’t or don’t want to participate feel self-conscious and nervous. “Fun in the hot tub” may not seem like fun to those creeped out at the thought of being in a bathing suit in a hot tub with their co-workers and boss.
When planning a company retreat, take time to carefully plan the event. Plan ahead to find the right venue and activities. Think about your budget. Consider your company objectives. What do you want the retreat to accomplish? Activities should be geared towards specific goals.
How well does your staff work together? Do they get along? Do they trust each other? How’s the morale in your office? Think about whether team building exercises should be included and if so, which ones.
Are there issues you want the group to brainstorm and troubleshoot? A company retreat can be an excellent opportunity to change the regular work environment and land on new ideas to solve problems.
Don’t be afraid to let employees have input. Input can lead to buy-in and better engagement. You can easily survey them about the proposed activities, goals, and agenda. Your staff may give you insight into issues they’d like to see addressed and give you great ideas for dealing with them.
Always consider employees who may be handicapped or challenged in some way. Always think about whether the activities you planned are appropriate for everyone in the group. You don’t want people making up excuses to ditch your event. And you certainly don’t want them writing to a nationally syndicated advice columnist, wondering how they can get out of your inappropriately planned retreat. The well-planned and executed company retreat can not only improve morale and help you run a better company, but it can be a terrific perk for your staff.