Our team of four has worked together closely and effectively for over 10 years and we have an abundance of respect for each other. More than that, we enjoy spending time together. We are compatible in our work and when we disagree we do it respectfully. When one of us succeeds the others are genuinely thrilled. So why did we need a corporate retreat? Seemingly not for team-building.
We agreed on an agenda for our retreat. An important part of it focused on identifying and defining the values that would guide our work, and we also needed to make some important decisions related to our business strategy and organizational structure. We packed our bags and headed to Lion’s Head on beautiful Georgian Bay. (If you look closely at the photo below, you might just find the Lion's Head!)
Much of our discussion and decision-making happened organically, sometimes while preparing a meal, hiking, or laying on a stone beach and gazing at the stars. I think this is in part because we are all natural facilitators. We knew exactly which questions to ask of each other to get down to the important decisions we needed to make. And finally being in a room together with our flipchart paper, markers, and sticky notes after working apart for so long during COVID didn’t hurt either. We had moments of laughing so hard that it hurt. And yet we were incredibly productive. Our ideas were flowing and we were confident in our decisions.
We also learned even more about each other. Ishan really likes garlic, Jennifer gets dangerously close to cliff edges, Liz enjoys a swinging couch, and Amy is a fearless trail guide.
We all see a bright future for Collective Results and we are a little concerned that as we grow, it will be more challenging to capture the same kind of experience in future retreats. But we believe we can do it as long as we continue to propagate trust, respect and fun in our working relationships. (More on that when we announce our values...)
Has your senior leadership team ever taken a corporate retreat? Why or why not? If you have taken a retreat, what were some of the key elements that made your retreats memorable and worthwhile? Drop us a line!