Negosentro|How to Inspire Company Culture with a Retreat|Fostering a positive company culture and one that attracts the budding workforce can be a challenge. Often talked about, seldom with tangible action items, employee culture and engagement can mystify business owners. In this post, we share Fundera’s tips for planning a company retreat. With these tips, you’ll have steps to take action today to encourage a company culture people will want to be a part of tomorrow.
Why a Company Retreat?
The benefits of a company retreat go beyond smiling employee faces, although that’s a perk in itself. See the direct and indirect benefits that executing a successful retreat can do for your organization below:
- Marketing Materials: Hire a professional photographer to take stills of the event to use for future recruiting events, the website, and social media.
- Morale Boost: Plan a retreat after busy season, as a reward to employee’s hard work to boost morale and help them de-stress.
- New Perspectives: Company retreats can foster creativity and cross-team collaboration.
- Find Hidden Talents: Hosting a retreat outside of the office allows team members to showcase what they can’t in a cubicle, which may lead to the discovery of a few hidden talents.
- Team Building: Beyond the standard ice breakers, real connections can happen when your team is able to see one another as a person instead of a coworker.
- Eliminate Hierarchy: A retreat can humanize upper-leadership and inspire each level to think big picture.
Things to Consider
Now that you’ve decided to host a company retreat, it’s time to think about the details. Use the list below to create a checklist for the planning stage for optimal results.
- Time: Your hard-working employees are most likely already stress. Don’t add to that by scheduling this event over busy season.
- Place: Is the retreat hosted locally? Will flights need to be booked? How about hotels for each employee and their significant other?
- Attendees: Make sure that your upper-leadership is invested in the retreat. Management level and above should all be attending the retreat for the best overall outcome.
- Cost: Consider asking for a discount from each vendor. You’ll be bringing in a large group that will likely give them repeat business, and likely, you won’t want all of your startup funding going to a single retreat.
- Transportation: Especially if you’re serving alcohol, it’s a good idea to provide transportation to and from the event for each employee. This can be a bus, a cab, or even a limo.
- Catering: Does your location provide food and beverages for your team? Will you serve alcohol at your event?
- Goals: Create tangible written goals for your retreat. These can range from merely improving communication between teams or go as in-depth as getting feedback on a new product.
- Moderator: If you’re covering touchy subjects at the retreat, it may be a good idea to hire a neutral, third-party moderator to make sure things stay on topic.
- Activities: Make sure there is enough planned throughout the retreat. Whether that be networking events, ice breakers, or team building, you’ll want to have a full agenda so your employees know where to go and when during the event.
You’ve done the hard part with planning and executing, however, your work is not over if you want to get the most out of the event. Take some time post-retreat to reflect on what was successful. Did you hit the goals you set initially? If so, what were the successful elements that helped reach that goal?
The more you document after the fact, the easier it will be to plan the next company retreat in the future. Get feedback from your employees about what they liked and what they didn’t. Each year you host, the event should improve. Whether that be location, activities, or food, make sure you strive to please the employees every step of the way—after all, you’re working to build a positive company culture with this retreat.
Find out more about how to plan a mindful company retreat with the infographic below.