How to Plan a Retreat Over Weekends
The success of any business directly depends on the quality of the workforce. The quality itself includes many characteristics such as professional skills and knowledge of employees, working conditions and communications inside the workforce. Recently, a new trend named team building retreat or outing came into leisure activities of many companies. Such a weekend retreat is an effective tool for strengthening relationships among the employees, improve cooperation inside the workforce and rallying human resources for the achievement of the established goals. Retreats have become a popular way to bond people, e.g., meditation retreats.
The following guide introduces productive solutions to plan a retreat over weekends in a proper way since any fault can turn retreat into an ineffective meeting outside the office. Be careful and comply with the advice below.
What Is a Team Building Retreat?
This term refers to an informal gathering of employees out of the office. As a rule, such retreats are organized al fresco, i.e. in quiet places far from noisy cities. The main aim of such a retreat is to teach the workforce to cooperate in various activities.
This approach is widely applied by managers to monitor the workforce environment and improve the social climate inside the office. The employees get a chance to reveal themselves in different situations that can disclose some hidden potential and skills.
Identifying Retreat Purposes
Bonding retreats are often used as a remedy for human resources after completion of some projects or significant activity. Management or employers understand that employees need some kind of reload. Hence, a team retreat on the weekend is a great way to boost the energy of any company’s workforce. A retreat can include several purposes. These are important for proper development of the retreat’s activities. It’s advisable to consult with a team leader regarding the retreat’s purposes.
The purposes of a retreat can be the following: creating an effective team or work group, evaluating the progress of a project, triggering creativity and close interactions inside the company, gaining employees’ trust, discussing the key issues of a project and many others.
Why Do You Need a Team Building Retreat?
Human resources are the foundation of a successful business. The effectiveness of your team’s work should be regularly increased to achieve the established objectives. For this reason, an outing provides numerous benefits for both achieving business objectives and bonding employees.
- A retreat can reveal the weaknesses of your team and strengthen the cooperation inside.
- You have an opportunity to see the work of your team in out-of-office conditions and discover new challenges or areas of growth for your team.
- A bonding retreat is a good opportunity to eliminate the distance if you manage different remote teams or experts. Such outdoor activities make people feel more connected.
- Another positive benefit of a retreat is the increase of motivation and job satisfaction. Trust is an important factor for employee satisfaction.
- Boosting team spirit is also an advantage of a properly organized retreat. If you plan it right, your employees will rest from office and learn new skills, which can be useful in the working process.
Deciding on a Retreat Facilitator
Any team building retreat requires a person to manage the entire course of activities. You can do it yourself or by inviting an independent facilitator. If you choose the second option, the outside retreat facilitator should be engaged in the planning of the weekend retreat strategy. The main attribute of a good facilitator is his awareness of the company’s business, purposes of retreat and effective organization of activities that will facilitate the improvement of workforce engagement in the retreat.
It’s important for the facilitator to understand and sense a proper time to discuss a given issue. This person must have the leadership skills and be socialized. The properly chosen facilitator will help you achieve the set objectives and make your bonding retreat a comfortable and convenient activity for your team members.
Best Places for Retreats over Weekends in Singapore
The next essential step of planning a retreat is to choose a venue. It’s not enough to bring your employees to the lake outside the city. You should consider such factors as location, infrastructure, environment, and costs.
Large companies can afford to spend huge sums of money to organize fruitful and effective activities across the ocean or in distant countries. If you want to stay in line with modern trends and decide to arrange a weekend retreat in Singapore, you should pay attention to the following recommended places for a team retreat on the weekend.
- Changi Cove. This is a great solution to arrange your team building activities. It provides a well-developed infrastructure and is surrounded by interesting local attractions.
- Conrad Centennial. This venue provides fitness and spa facilities, as well as other necessary premises for an effective outing.
- Wave House Sentosa. It’s a beachfront venue covering around 70,000 square feet. This place can be easily converted into a water park or private club according to your needs.
- Siloso Beach Resort. This venue is a perfect location, where you and your teammates forget about the hustle and noise of office life.
Planning a Successful Retreat
Organizing a team retreat is not an easy task. In order to keep the balance and get everything in order, you need a strict plan to follow. This plan should be prepared by a group of concerned parties. Such a planning committee will carefully develop each stage of the retreat according to its purposes. By the way, the effectiveness of any retreat depends on the clear description of the agenda and expected outcomes. If you know what you need, you’ll have a broader understanding of what needs to be done. Don’t forget about educational goals. A retreat should not only give relaxation but also have a training bonus.
One important point should be considered. If you involve several representatives of top management, this would increase workforce engagement in the activities and improve the overall attitude at a retreat.
Types of Effective Activities for Retreats
Actually, the number of weekend retreat ideas is endless. Everything depends on the purpose and objectives of the upcoming retreat. A perfect retreat activity should have a fun appeal and be an icebreaker. Nevertheless, you could consider the following most popular activities for a retreat.
This activity comprises dynamic atmosphere along with staying in the wild. Rafting requires teamwork that makes it a productive activity for any retreat.
This type of activity is more unhurried. Your employees will be engaged in sports activities that require patience and interaction with teammates.
This kind of activity is a bit extreme, which also demands peculiar qualities of your workforce. Some situations related to hiking can offer insight into the inner world of a person.
It’s important to engage not only the members of one team who see each other every day. You need fresh blood for the retreat. For this reason, it’s advisable to organize interactive activities with different departments or units of your company. Besides, the presence of top managers or representatives of shareholders or the shareholders themselves can increase the people’s confidence in the importance of such a retreat. Your workforce should be interested in the arranged activities.
It is also recommended to make a video and photos, from the retreat to make it memorable for the attendees.
What You Should Avoid
Planning a bonding retreat is a complex process. Moreover, such activities can be irrelevant for your company during a particular period. For example, if a project deadline looms large, a retreat idea should be postponed until after the completion of the pending project. Team building retreats are not suitable for small companies or teams containing a couple of people.
If you want to create a successful bonding retreat, you should avoid the following:
- Saving money on an organization. The poor organization will not be appreciated by your employees and will not achieve the desired results.
- Boring engagement. The worst thing about any retreat is bored attendees. Make sure that the planned activities are fun and challenging.
It’s recommended to ask for feedback on the retreat right at the end of activities. Do not delay this inquiry, because the best feedback comes in the form of a fresh opinion.
This guide is targeted at assisting you in the creation of a successful outing, or retreat, for your company. This activity is an efficient way to reveal the strengths and weaknesses of your workforce, improve team spirit and increase the productivity of your human resources. Follow the aforementioned recommendations and plan many successful retreats for your teammates.