Are your employees “Team Yay, a Company Retreat!” or “Team Oh, No, Not Another Team-Building Event”? If most of your staff fall into the second category, chances are you need a few creative ideas before you schedule your next getaway.
Gone are the days when building company morale meant revealing embarrassing secrets or sitting around in small groups all day. Now, employers schedule bleisure events, mixing business with leisure in a way everyone can enjoy.
Whether you’re trying to relieve some company-wide overwhelm or reward your team for their hard work, consider these outdoor retreats for your next business getaway.
Table of Contents
1. A No-Tech Weekend of Relaxation
Much of today’s stress comes from technology. We’re always at the beck and call of our digital devices as they bombard us with texts, emails, and social media notifications. The endless list of to-dos never goes away — until you get rid of the technology.
At first, these types of retreats receive serious resistance. No one wants to willingly give up their main line of communication, especially for a few days. But when they do it, it can completely change their mental state for the better.
To counter some of that expected resistance, plan a method to send and receive emergency messages. If you’re in the woods or deep in a canyon, you’ll need to find out how to get service and medical help if necessary. Some of the worries of a no-tech weekend will be taken care of with that necessity out of the way. Your staff will likely be more receptive to the getaway.
Plan ways to keep them busy so they don’t spend the whole time thinking about what they’re missing on social media. This is a great time to indulge in spa services or get back to the basics with some tent camping and survival skills.
2. A Meditation Camp
Similar to a no-tech getaway, a meditation retreat helps your staff regain their mental balance. The main difference is that a meditation retreat is strategically planned for attendees to bring their results back to the “real world.”
Depending on your retreat type, your staff will participate in classes where they’ll learn how to relax and quiet their thoughts. This might sound simple. but in reality, studies have shown that many people would rather go through electric shock than be in their heads!
We live in an age where distractions are easily found everywhere, and silence is so rare that we don’t know what to do when we’re forced into it. Meditation retreats help your employees learn the benefits of thinking, such as better cognition and memory, increased communication, and reduced stress.
3. A Walking Tour
Walking outside is great exercise and an excellent stress reliever. So why not plan an event in a new, unknown city, and schedule a walking tour to learn about the area?
City-wide walking tours are structured enough to keep your workers busy. But relaxed enough to give them a chance to connect and get to know each other better. They’re also easily adjustable for everyone’s physical abilities.
Let your teams choose whether they want to walk, Segway, bike, or use other forms of available transportation.
4. Nature Explorations
Getting out and hands-on in nature is rejuvenating. There’s something about the great outdoors that gets our hearts and minds back in alignment and free from the stress of the rat race of our daily routines.
Unlike the immersive, no-tech experiences, nature explorations can be scheduled for a block of a few hours of your retreat. Your staff can enjoy their hotel, lounge in the pool, relax with creature comforts, and then head out to the wild blue yonder for your nature exploration.
Some examples of team-building nature activities include horseback riding, botanical garden walks, volunteer gardening, hiking, white water rafting, and team sports.
Designing this activity is best if you know the physical abilities of your staff. Before doing any outdoor activity, ask about allergies and any phobias. Adjust your plans according to the health of your team members, and make sure everyone feels included.
Decide on your goal for any of these outdoor company retreats and align your activities with the purpose of improving team morale. Remember to stay flexible. If things aren’t working as planned and your staff seems to be more stressed than relaxed, you’ll need to adjust the activities.
By the time your retreat is over, everyone should be firmly on “Team Yay,” happily returning to work with a refreshed mental state and positive outlook.
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