Remember that feeling when you went to your best friend’s house, played all day, and then -Hallelujah!- You got permission to sleep over?
That old magic can still happen, in grown-up ways. Taking your group, department, team, leadership, or your entire staff to an overnight getaway to high quality meeting space can add a touch of anticipation that not only improves morale, but actually allows you to get more done.
Sponsoring a multi-day meeting away sets you apart. After all, your enterprise is made up of people with hopes, dreams and gripes. Read any of the best-practice literature on leadership and most will tell you to take seriously the interplay of relationships in the people doing the work.
For you die-hard pragmatists out there, consider this: a few days spent investing in the health of your team can actually save on efficiencies in the long run. How much does it cost to onboard new employees? How many hours of re-learning the same processes does turnover cost you? Your employees do talk about their work environment, affecting attitudes and work habits. How many of their most difficult challenges are company-inflicted?
Companies who have made the move to regular, multi-day getaway meetings can vouch for the fact that a retreat that allows for some focused work time and extended down time can work wonders. Ask your people this question, “Would you rather work in a place with healthy, enjoyable relationships, or… anywhere else?”
Another benefit of time away is simply: perspective. Microsoft founder Bill Gates famously holes up for a week away once a year for the purpose of getting a different view of his and Microsoft’s place in the world.
“By actively disconnecting and looking at everything from 50,000 feet, I [Gates] am able to effectively reflect, reset, and clearly rethink my goals and aspirations.”
Some other benefits? Consider these:
Breaking the Silos
A silo by definition keeps one thing in and everything else out, whether its missiles or millet. Your organization has them- they tend to form on their own as people focus on their own work every day in the office. They can be great for focus and eliminating distractions, but their usefulness is limited when it comes to big-picture progress.
Rapid, accurate and robust communication between every moving part of your organization keeps regression away and influence high. When your team members are giving ideas, being listened to, making suggestions and learning from every other part of the operation, some amazingly creative solutions arise.
While plenary sessions with guest speakers in a large meeting space can help, it’s often the informal information exchange at dinner or over a cup of coffee that the sparks fly. Building the relational trust and credibility for this to happen just takes time. Like fast food, when time and effort are missing from your meetings, you sit down to poor excuses for dinner.
Ignoring the clock
What a refreshing change to disregard deadlines, time limits, and due dates. It’s not often we have the chance to allow things to emerge organically from discussion and debate. Also, human beings are not simply units of data storage. It takes time to understand, ruminate upon and use information. After all, your goal is not really to simply download data, but to allow intelligently processed, creative responses to grow as a result.
Simply driving to a conference center can be productive in developing the camaraderie that underpins the success of your multi-day meeting. Physical distance can provide the necessary separation from the norm that gives people permission to be more open about discussion items.
Here at MIT’s Endicott House, you’ll find everything you need to get away with purpose. Taking the next step as an organization can be difficult, so start out on the right foot! Our Complete Meeting Package Boston is a customizable program of offerings that you don’t have to think about. We’ll take care of all the hospitality- you handle the inspiration and team building. Here’s a basic rundown of what we do for our clients when they arrive for a retreat or meeting:
- Lovely well-appointed guest rooms in our mansion or conference center
- Ongoing morning and afternoon refreshments for break times
- Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner prepared onsite with fresh ingredients
- Meeting room with an effective and comfortable environment for communication and learning Essential Audio-Video Equipment and Meeting Supplies
- Professional Meeting Specialists to guarantee your program’s success
Visit our Multi-day Meeting Package Boston page for more details.
Our landscaped grounds and beautifully decorated 1930’s-era mansion has supplied the backdrop for countless meaningful and productive meetings in a stress- and distraction-free environment since 1955. Join us for a tour and complimentary luncheon!