Sometimes things become stagnant – personnel are sluggish, systems are malfunctioning, and morale is low. What can help? Perhaps it is time to think about setting up a retreat. Hold an event outside of the office that combines work and play. Even if you are a one-man office, you can take a “day” or a few hours for a retreat to work on a project that will help you organize and improve your business.
The response of many business owners is there is no time and it’s too expensive. The excuses can be plentiful. You can make a retreat happen and it can have many benefits.
A team retreat not only allows everyone to relax, it fosters an atmosphere of creativity and involvement in the company. Well-planned and regularly scheduled retreats can provide tremendous benefits.
- Team members feel appreciated.
- Retreats promote team unity and commitment to the common goal.
- Retreats promote easier conflict resolution in a neutral setting.
- Retreats can make better use of the team’s creative potential.
- Retreats provide the opportunity to resolve complicated work issues by removing the normal daily distractions.
- Retreats can raise the level of professionalism.
You need to understand that it can be a risk to hold a retreat if it turns out to be a negative and unproductive event. This is why planning and preparation are so important. Be sure that to clearly state goals and build enthusiasm for the event. Careful planning will produce positive results.
- Do advance planning.
- Make the retreat comfortable.
- Make the retreat relevant.
- Have specific and useful goals.
- Plan the time wisely – avoid planning too many goals or activities for the time allotted.
- Organize productive team activities.
- Create visual aids to aid learning and planning.
- Consider bringing in outside speakers to facilitate learning
Keep the retreat on track and toward the retreat goals.
- Get started with a warm-up activity – i.e. refreshments, an upbeat reading.
- Designate a team member to take minutes of the retreat.
- Review the company and/or team mission.
- Lay out the ground rules as soon as possible; ask for cooperation and discourage negative behavior.
- Encourage brainstorming among team members.
- Take action if the retreat lags – i.e. – take appropriate breaks, go for a walk, have a snack
- Encourage all team members to work toward a positive conclusion.
- Make the retreat fun; plan some social time and introduce one or two upbeat exercises or fun activities.
- Review the entire retreat in a positive light; ask for feedback.
- Ask for suggestions for future team retreats.
You can find more information on retreats, office meetings, and team building exercises in the new LandlordSource product, Building an Effective Property Management Team. There are 22 customizable forms included to help you put together a winning property management team.
Jean Storms, MPM® is the founder/author of LandlordSource and has been a NARPM® member since January 1993.
Disclaimer: LandlordSource does not represent the article content in this website as legal advice. It is shared information only and up to the reader to use this information responsibly, seeking legal advice as necessary to their business.