Corporate Retreats - Why do they add value to a business?
The Value of Corporate Retreats for Business Success
Corporate retreats are often misunderstood and wrongly perceived as management jollies. While the term “corporate retreat” might feature on a management-speak bingo card along with phrases like “deep dive,” “circle back,” and “helicopter view,” our focus is to make corporate retreats effective, inspirational and a way to relax.
So, what is the purpose of a corporate retreat, without using management speak? We believe a corporate retreat is when a group of people who share a common goal and need to work together, come together to identify, agree upon, and develop a plan to achieve success. A successful corporate retreat has several key components, some of which are:
- A clear focus on achieving specific objectives for the event. Attendees should be encouraged to stay away from their phones and only check emails during designated times.
- The event should have a real purpose and be geared towards addressing tangible content.
- The event should have several informal features that encourage communication and the sharing of ideas and viewpoints across different departments.
- The event should offer senior colleagues the opportunity to explain the corporate strategy on a one-on-one or one-on-few basis.
- The event should give front-line employees a chance to share their real-life experiences and day-to-day challenges with senior management.
- The event should be geared towards creating a sense of belonging and common purpose by creating a shared vision for the future and implementing practical plans for achievement.
- The event should also provide an opportunity to identify and celebrate success.
- The event should be scheduled in a way that encourages maximum attendance.
- A corporate retreat does not have to take place in a remote location. It can be held in any setting, such as in the heart of a city. Red Blaze has managed corporate retreats in cities like Barcelona, Prague, Lisbon, and London.
How does Red Blaze add value to a corporate retreat?
We have extensive relationships with both major hotel groups and independents, which allow us to find the perfect spot for a corporate retreat and negotiate the best possible terms to save costs. We bring our expertise and experience in performance improvement solutions to the design of a corporate retreat, ensuring maximum return on investment. We always look for creative ways to explain complex topics in an easy-to-understand way. We help clients identify ways to build effective working teams across organisational, geographic, and cultural divides. Corporate retreats are an excellent way to embed desired values into a group, particularly during times of organisational change. We work with clients to identify, recognise, and celebrate success.
We helped a client to visualise their 3-year strategic plan by having specialist caricature artists working in real time to create a 10m x 2.5m montage of what was discussed and agreed. The final piece was photographed, printed, and framed and sent as a fun, creative reminder of their deliberations, providing a visual recap of what was discussed and agreed
Identify, recognise and celebrate success
Finding ways to recognise and celebrate success lies at the core of what we do. This can take many forms from ‘Oscar’ style awards dinners, creating recognition insignia and trophies. We have some clients who very visibly ‘upgrade’ the rooms of high achievers, ensuring top performers are visibly placed on prominent tables at formal dinners. There is a fine balance between creating a ‘them and us’ culture and showcasing the best practice of high achievers, using our experience we work closely with clients to find that balance. Using a corporate retreat to recognise and celebrate success is a powerful tool to leveraging investment in such an event.
A key aspect of our work at Red Blaze is to help clients to build on their investment in a Corporate Retreat to ensure all the great work achieved when the group are together does not seep away because of the pressures of day-to-day challenges. We work closely with clients to create mechanisms that continue the dialogue, hold all stakeholders, including senior management, to account for any actions agreed.
We ran a series of events dubbed ‘Future Positive’ where participants could write on a ‘graffiti wall’ gripes and issues that were acting as barriers to progress. As part of the programme the CEO would directly address the comments on the ‘graffiti wall’ and any agreed response noted. Critical to the credibility of this process was revisiting each point at the next event and feeding back to the whole group what progress had been made. Red Blaze took the lead in recording what was said and agreed and ensuring during the time between events that visibility was maintained in the client organisation.
How and when else can Corporate Retreats add value?
It has already been mentioned, change can be organisationally disruptive. Corporate Retreats are excellent mechanisms for ensuring there is clarity of messaging across the whole organisation. This is particularly relevant at times re-scaling, either through acquisition or merger and at times of either rapid growth or downsizing. During such occasions it is extremely important there not only is there clarity of messaging, but also that senior management understand and address emerging concerns and questions.
There has been much discussion in the media around the challenges of recruitment and staff retention. Corporate retreats provide an excellent additional tool for senior management to stay in touch with their teams, to dispel rumours, to engage in positive dialogue, to listen and learn and to enthuse and encourage talent to excel. All these aspects of a Corporate Retreat are effective elements of any recruitment and retention strategy.
Corporate retreats are effective mechanisms for clients to achieve both short and more importantly long-term goals. Currently structured and implemented they can add significant value to any organisation.
Red Blaze over the last 20+years have built up considerable experience and expertise in helping organisations to maximise and sustain return on the investments they make.
If you would like to find out more about our services, call Stephen Pope on +44 (0) 7887 794397 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org