Corporate retreats are often intended for purposes of general relaxation, team-building, and brainstorming of new ideas. Members can relax, share experiences encountered throughout the work period, usually a year, in a relaxed and tension-free atmosphere. These are the places where the junior employees can find a chance to interact freely with their superiors.
In most cases, a small group is given the task of coming up with topics, methods, ideas, and activities that would lead to a successful organizational retreat. The activities that eventually see the light of day often depend on what the group agrees on. However, here are some things that are likely to appear in nearly every corporate retreat.
Presentations Over Dinner
Dinner is a healthy time when the day is just coming to an end, everyone has had a series of experiences throughout the day and is all set to rest. People usually find this a quality time to share and talk in the form of short presentations. The no-hurry kind of atmosphere makes it a prime opportunity for general disclosure or self-disclosure.
As most of you have experienced – games are perfect team building tools. There is a whole lot of them that can be played at different times during a company retreat. You could plan for four or five different games to be played by various groups. In most cases, there are no men-women games so that your employees can play together without isolating any gender. The key here is to make the games fun and productive, give everyone a chance to interact with each other, share ideas and even some laughs.
Dice and cards are great for both indoor and outdoor games. If you bring a game along, it will naturally get played. You don’t have to push or influence members; they will typically start and continue playing.
Corporate retreats usually are meant to prepare the people for the coming year or work period. Other than relax their minds and cement relations between them, members are trained on specific relational and essential skills.
This could involve training people to improve their time management, delegation of duties, problem-solving, or situational leadership. Retreats are the best time to offer training on such skills as there is enough space and time free from the distraction of work so people can learn better. You’ll typically give lessons and ask participants to act them out. That’s how adults learn – and yes, I mean role-playing.
The list of activities can be longer. Nonetheless, these activities are highly unlikely to be missing from any corporate retreat.
To learn more about work-life balance I encourage you to pick up a copy of my book Double Double and skip to Chapter 15. Then go back and read the rest (of course)!
And of course – I also recommend becoming part of The COO Alliance, where topics like this are discussed among the tribe. For more information, and to apply, click here.