When planning an offsite, it’s important to identify clear goals for the event. Offsites can serve a variety of purposes, from providing space for innovation and decision-making to team-building and socializing. By defining your objectives early on and discussing them with your team, you’ll have a better chance of creating a successful and productive event.
The goals you set for your offsite will help guide the creation of your agenda. Depending on what you want to accomplish, you may include coworking time, team activities, social events, workshops, and more. However, it’s important to avoid getting tunnel vision when it comes to planning your agenda. Creating some level of variation is essential to keeping things engaging and dynamic, so make sure to strike a balance between business and fun.
When creating your agenda, it’s also important to keep in mind that offsites can be tiring for your team. Avoid the instinct to overstuff your event with back-to-back activities or working sessions. Plan in shorter blocks of time, allow for breaks between major activities, and offer choices for more or less participation when you can. A successful offsite should leave your staff feeling recharged, not exhausted.
While the main focus of many offsites is achieving specific business objectives, it’s important not to overlook the value of building relationships. People who report being lonely are twice as likely to miss work due to illness and five times more likely to miss work due to stress, which means even just building better relationships throughout your organization can have tangible, long-term benefits. So, while you’re planning your event, make sure to include plenty of opportunities for your team to connect with one another and have fun.
To help you identify your goals for the offsite, consider asking questions like:
What is the most important thing we're hoping to achieve during this time together?
Is it more important for us to get to know each other better or to make progress on our work?
Is there anything our team or organization is struggling with that we might be able to tackle during this event?
How do you want attendees to feel after the offsite?
By answering these questions and identifying your goals early on, you’ll be well on your way to creating a successful offsite that meets your team’s needs and helps your organization achieve its objectives.
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