Joel Gascoigne, CEO of software application company Buffer, says “I see our retreats as an essential part of the work we do together. I firmly believe that if we operated the company without these regular face-to-face gatherings, we would be less effective and feel less connected.” While you might not have a remote team or be the CEO of a multi-million-dollar company and voted by INC one of the best workplaces for 2018, a leadership retreat can act as a catalyst for bonding, learning, training and a change in perspective for the leadership team. A few strategies for retreats include determining what you want to achieve, what would people be doing differently after the retreat, who should be involved in the planning and should there be a facilitator.
What are you trying to achieve? The best retreats have a clearly stated purpose which you can work with the team to determine. What are the outcomes and what do you want people to do differently after the retreat? Is the purpose for team building, training, assessing progress or strategic direction?
Often having someone facilitate the retreat can be beneficial. There are several occasions when it’s best for you to consider outside help. A facilitator can act as a catalyst for stimulating and assessing progress with follow-up activities and can be an objective observer. It also allows the leader to be an active participant. The facilitator is there to help the business achieve their wanted results.
Here at The Brooks Group we offer Revolutionize Your Business: The Lessons of George Washington & The Largest Battle of the American Revolution. A flexible curriculum to building on the skills identified for business leadership, The Brooks Group has designed a two-day skill enhancement program that enables participants to understand their individual leadership strengths and weaknesses, assess their ability to forge and utilize a team to achieve their business objectives, establish performance expectations of themselves as well as their team, and practice these skills in a customized business simulation (that the participants actually build) which encourages them to think at the next level of management.