An effective retreat should build camaraderie among the attendees, provide thought-provoking content, relieve stress, offer healthy food and beverage options, and include fun and motivating activities that are good for the mind, body and soul set in a positive environment. Here are a few tips for hosting an effective retreat:
Purpose The first thing you want to do is determine what the purpose of your retreat is and plan accordingly, whether it’s for problem solving, creative thinking, team building, strategic planning or development of goals and objectives for the organization.
Venue The goal is to pick a venue that is away from the attendees’ day-to-day lives. Don’t be so creative that the venue is too hard to get too. We had a client pick a beautiful location in upstate New York because they received a great deal from the venue but they couldn’t sell any tickets because it was so far out of the way and in the end they had to cancel the retreat. That’s never a good feeling to have to cancel your event so be smart about the location.
Price We have found that attendees generally like the price of a retreat to be all-inclusive. This could include, ground transportation, air travel, lodging, food and beverage and all activities. You can offer upgrades to the activities but try to keep it as inclusive as possible.
Activities The best part of a retreat is the fun activities. Attendees like to have options. Some attendees may not want to go horseback riding so be sure to set up another activity like a yoga class or hiking trip at the same time so the attendees can choose.
Team Building Team building activities are a great way to help attendees learn how to be strong teammates. We planned a citywide scavenger hunt for a client once and it was a huge success. Here is a list of 15 more fun team-building activities that you can incorporate into your retreat.
Facilitator Hire an experienced event planning team like Naif Productions who have experience running a retreat. An experienced event team will create a memorable experience for your attendees, help you meet your goals, and save you time and money. The savings we negotiate will more than offset our fees.
Follow Up Always follow up with the attendees after the retreat. It’s a good way to measure if you met your goals and what worked and didn’t work for the next retreat.
Whether we are in a corporate job or an entrepreneur, we are all busy in the day-to-day grind. A retreat is a great way to get away and rejuvenate to help us sustain increased productivity. These are just a few tips for hosting a retreat. However, as with any type of event, it’s extremely important to focus on the end goal and meet the objectives.
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About Naif Productions:
Naif Productions is a strategic event planning, design and production firm specializing in corporate, live coaching sales events, social, non-profit, and weddings. Based in New York City, we produce events worldwide from Fortune 500 clients and coaches to families and charities. Naif Productions specializes in helping clients attain their goals, realize return on investment, and achieve the most unique, creative experiences.
About Annette Naif:
Since 1986 Annette Naif has been designing and producing custom events, helping clients create their unique style that translates into a memorable and profitable experience. Annette spent 17 years producing events in the motion picture industry where she helped coordinate numerous productions for film and episodic television programs. Since then Annette’s been running her own event production company, coaching other event planners, teaching an event operations and production course at NYU, and now is the CEO & Creative Director of Naif Productions.