With summer quickly coming to a close, business owners, executives, and managers will look to re-focus their employees on the task at hand. For many, this means planning a team building retreat to get your employees out of the office and engaged.
How to Plan an Effective Team Building Retreat
“Team building retreats can be an incredibly powerful way to increase your workforce’s camaraderie, develop more productive relationships and improve levels of communication and cooperation,” says Michael Henman. “However, to ensure your team building retreat is effective, it’s essential to plan it carefully – otherwise it can quickly turn into an unproductive offsite meeting.”
What’s Your Objective?
According to Kate Nasser, president of CAS, Inc., it is important to take a step back and think about your overall objective for this team building retreat. Do you want to rally the troops and improve teamwork? Do you see a specific deficiency within your team, such as lack of communication? Perhaps, you just want to have some fun and boost morale.
“You must be clear on what you want to accomplish to get the most benefit from your day,” says Matt Baker, Terrapin Adventures. “This way your facilitator can design exercises to help participants address those concerns.”
Get Input from Your Team
“Once goals have been established, planners should pick a teambuilding event based on the company—not the latest trend,” says Michele Laufik, BizBash.
If you want your retreat to be a success, it is important to consult your team. While you certainly cannot make everyone happy all the time, asking your employees for advice will both show them that you value their opinion, and help you shape your retreat.
“Expect that you will get diverse views, but know that they will be more engaged if the activity represents their definition of fun,” says Nasser.
Going Over Logistics
Once you’ve determined the what and why of your team building retreat, it is time to get down to business. However, there is one more important consideration to make before picking up the phone. How much are you willing to spend? Will your retreat last multiple days, a single day, or maybe just for an afternoon? Are you staying on-site, or are you taking your employees off-site?
By establishing a budget, you will better be able to determine retreat specifics, such as the when and where of the event. And while it may seem like a good idea to go the do-it-yourself route to save some money, the outcomes may not be as meaningful as you’d like. Afterall, team building professionals are professionals for a reason. They know what they’re doing.
Choosing a Facilitator
Who is going to facilitate this corporate retreat? “Remember, you’ll only get value from a team building experience if it’s well executed,” says Billy Kirsch, Kidbilly Music. An experienced facilitator is the backbone of any successful team building program. They not only lead the individual exercises, but also hold debriefing sessions to help reinforce the lessons learned during those exercises.
Custom Team Building Retreats in Maryland
“Team building is the most important investment you can make for your people,” says Brian Scudamore, O2E Brands CEO and founder.
Conveniently located between Baltimore and Washington DC, Terrapin Adventures is well-positioned to meet your needs. We offer custom on-site and off-site, indoor and outdoor team building programs designed to break down barriers and help your staff work more efficiently and cohesively. Our custom programs provide for exciting activities that bridge gaps in communication, improve collaboration, and expand your group’s problem solving skills.
Get in touch with a Guest Relations Specialist today and ask about how we can help you plan your team building event.
If you have any questions, please call Terrapin Adventure at 301.725.1313, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.
- Henman, Michael. “How To Plan A Team Building Retreat: The Complete Guide.” Team Building Activities, Challenges, Venture Team Building, 8 May 2016, www.ventureteambuilding.co.uk/how-to-plan-team-building-retreat-complete-guide/.
- Laufik, Michele. “4 Tips for Planning Your Next Teambuilding Event.” BizBash, 12 June 2015, www.bizbash.com/4-tips-for-planning-your-next-teambuilding-event/new-york/story/30562/#.W2s5udJKiUk.
- Morrell, Katie. “How to Plan a Team Building Event Everyone Will Enjoy.” OPEN Forum, American Express Foreign Exchange Services, 4 Mar. 2011, www.americanexpress.com/us/small-business/openforum/articles/how-to-plan-a-team-building-event-everyone-will-enjoy-1/.