Picture this. It’s sunrise. The August heat hasn’t fully crept in. Despite the early hour – 7:00 a.m. (just barely) – laughter rings out from the grounds of the golf course. Competition is stiff among golf’s early risers, and there are still at least six holes to go before the game is done.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that this group of golfers is just enjoying a late-in-the-year vacation. But you’re wrong. They’re working, enjoying a corporate retreat, the likes of which you’ve likely never seen before. You’d also be forgiven if you think that, as far as corporate events go, such expenditures fall on the frivolous side of corporate accounting. That’s also not so, even if it used to be.
These hybrid/remote team meetups/ destination corporate retreats came into vogue recently, primarily due to the pressure that COVID-19 put on company culture during the height of the pandemic. Yes, things at the proverbial office are returning to a more normal work state. However, it looks like plenty of people will be working at home for the foreseeable future, making corporate retreats like this a necessity, not just a nicety.
What Makes Corporate Retreats Great
According to The Atlantic, a pre-pandemic study conducted a decade before the 2020 pandemic revealed that nearly 70% of remote workers felt isolated by their work-at-home arrangements.
During the pandemic, things appeared to have worsened for those at home. That is, more remote workers than ever before reported feelings of deep loneliness due to COVID-19 and the remote work situation.
Nowadays, company annual planning meetings must address the loneliness felt by the remote workers if that company wants a thriving and successful workforce. If you’re a corporate events planner, then you probably feel just how disjointed your workforce feels, particularly if you have some workers who got their jobs during the pandemic.
Working in the office is not a thing for those remote workers, and they likely feel the lack of comradeship acutely. While playing golf in the early a.m. with your coworkers was a pipe dream a decade ago, nowadays, such corporate events have a real purpose. They infuse hybrid/ remote teams with a sense of belonging and connection in a way that Zoom meetings and long strings of email just can’t.
Great Corporate Retreats Are Away From The Hustle And Bustle
Additionally, although these teams are technically at play some of the time during these corporate destination retreats, some of the most powerful company production ideation comes from such play. According to an article on Inc.com, our best ideas come during relaxation times. In fact, neuroscientists say that our creative brains work best when we’re relaxed and at play.
This alone makes an argument for destination corporate retreats. Still, while we might be biased about the idyllic conditions and activities you’ll find at places like Pursell Farms, we have observed that the best “away corporate events” have plenty of flexibility built into them.
Ideally, these planned events take much of the stress out of planning. That is, these locations provide everything you need for a comfortable week.
- Office and technical support in the week
- Central lodging
- On-and off-time activities
- On-site food and meal options
Corporate Events And Warm Weather’s Last Hurrah
However, even if you have the option to work and play at an event site like this, if the retreat site is worth its salt, it’s also close enough to nearby towns to allow participants to go out and play in the wide world. After two years or so of being housebound, the last thing corporate events participants want is to be forced to stay somewhere, even if it is 3,200 acres of green goodness as far as the eye can see.
Successful corporate events for your hybrid remote team should include chances for both on- and off-site activities. This is particularly true if you think about context and timing. Although people this time of year are just coming off the long, hot summer, it’s often difficult to get the push they need to make it through ‘til the end of the year.
And for many companies, particularly those in the retail sector, the last quarter of the year is where they make almost half of their profit for the year. If ever a company needed its team to be on its A-game, the fall of the year is it.
The right corporate events can empower your team to give their best work to the office, even into the fall holiday season. There should be enough work to make the corporate event successful and enough fun to make the whole team feel rejuvenated and ready for the work ahead.
Final Words of Hybrid Teams and Corporate Events
In the pre-pandemic days, a corporate retreat usually included a stuffy hotel conference room, thermapots of stale coffee, and an assortment of chocolate bars and muffins on the tables to keep participants awake during the slide show.
Nowadays, events for your hybrid remote team need to do more than just stay awake. They need to help all of your workers, even and maybe especially, the remote ones, feel like they belong to the team. They also need to include a significant element of fun, on- and off-site. If you find the right location for your corporate events, you may just find that your workers come away with more usable and profitable ideas and are pumped for the quarter ahead.
If you’d like to learn more about holding the ideal corporate retreat, contact us today to get a quote.