Top 10 Reasons to Retreat for Leaders and Managers

Jun 6 21:00 2004 Gala Gorman Print This Article

“Your business is your BEST client.” Gala ... are so many ... facing business these days that it seems ... ... to slow down long enough to plan for the ... go by

“Your business is your BEST client.” Gala Gorman

There are so many challenges facing business these days that it seems virtually impossible to slow down long enough to plan for the future.

Months go by and you have held your own. You might pause momentarily to celebrate a success never taking the time to reflect on what happened in order to replicate what went right. Problems are treated with a band-aid approach so that everyone involved can just get on to the pressing issues at hand. You can count on the problem reoccurring – possibly with a different face and in a different place – because there was no time made to get to the root cause that made the environment ripe for the problem to surface originally.

There is a different way of managing your business…a way to capture what works making it available for future benefit and a way to mine the opportunity available when problems occur to maximize your return on investment (the involuntary investment you’ve already made through experiencing the problem or mistake). The retreat is a great way to prioritize,Guest Posting and intentionally manage, your business.

The retreat creates the stage for working on your business in contrast to your day to day efforts working in your business. Retreats can be as short as an afternoon or extend for several days. They can focus on a single issue or be structured to address many concerns. Certainly, whether the retreat takes place in the company conference room or at a resort far from the office, it can be an experience that forever alters the way you approach your business.

One of the primary issues of concern in any organization is ensuring that every area or department is working in alignment with the vision, mission and values. Goals and objectives are more easily reached when there is a synergy amongst the organization’s leadership. Participating in a well-planned retreat can help to create that synergy.

I have shared what I believe are the Top 10 reasons to schedule your retreat sooner rather than later. If you’re still wondering if a retreat is worth the investment, consider the following reasons (and feel free to add some of your own).

1.Define your vision.
Most leaders have a vision for their organization. In many cases though, its pretty fuzzy. In order to effectively communicate your vision and get the “buy-in” necessary to realize it, you need to bring it into clear focus. Just scheduling the retreat will guarantee that the vision becomes the mechanism to align the activities of the organization.

2.Commit to goals.
With a clear vision and purpose, goals can be established that provide the road map to be used when implementing plans. The organization’s goals won’t mean much unless the responsibility for achieving them is filtered through to the individual(s) that will be tasked with taking action. Commitment to a goal requires taking ownership and the retreat provides a place for that to happen.

3.Manage your reputation.
Your reputation is one of your organization’s most valuable assets. Effectively managing that reputation requires an understanding of how the reputation was built and how it is best maintained or enhanced. The organization that isn’t prepared to deal with a challenging situation can have their good reputation tarnished beyond repair literally overnight.

4.Replicate your best practices.
Every organization can site experiences where everything seemed to go right. All the planning and training paid off and things fell into place. It is important to capture those moments of brilliance and dissect them so that they can be replicated. Successful organizations know what they do best and focus their efforts where they know they shine.

5.Showcase your disciplines of leadership.
In order to fully benefit from the synergy that can be created when everyone is working on the same game plan, the players must know the talents available to the team and how to use them for maximum results. The retreat provides an opportunity to highlight individuals and share their contributions in a way that promotes solidarity.

6.Demonstrate collaborative management.
The master-mind experience can be very powerful. The process of collaboration transcends the concept of “two heads are better than one”. When an organization’s leadership begins to employ the ideas of people outside of the traditional decision-making track, innovation becomes commonplace.

7.Grow managers into leaders.
An organization’s managers can get bogged down in daily activities and inhibit the growth of the organization. When managers are challenged to become leaders, there is a change in their thought process. It is no longer enough to just get the job done. The leader considers consequential implications of decisions made focusing on what is best for all stakeholders.

8.Recognize individual contributions.
Just receiving an invitation to participate in the organization’s retreat is recognition of an individual’s contribution to past successes. Having their work recognized is cited time and again as the major factor related to satisfaction with a person’s work. When planning the retreat, it is important to consider the recognition factor in venue selection.

9.Inspire independent thinking.
An organization is only as good as the people it employs to deliver its goods and services. Those people must be creative problem-solvers while constantly keeping the vision and goals in focus. In an environment of trust and openness independent thinking is worth the risk. During the retreat, participants increase their knowledge and, consequently, power to think.

10.Realize the full potential of participants.
In every organization there are untapped resources. Those resources exist in human potential more than any other area. There is an invisible “force”, if you will, that is created by bringing the participants together in the retreat experience. Everyone involved wants to be their best and give their all. There are resources that are made available which would otherwise be beyond reach.

YES…a carefully crafted retreat can accomplish all of the above and more.
So, what does it take to have a successful retreat?

From the outset you need to view the retreat as an investment in your business. At a minimum, there will be a significant contribution of time in planning and in taking your leadership out of operations on the day of the retreat. You might decide that it makes sense to hire a professional facilitator or to use a facility that is well-suited to a retreat experience.

To ensure that you reap all the rewards possible from the retreat, there are many things to consider. From the invitation list to the venue and everything in between, the success of the retreat will be a direct reflection of what went into its planning.

What are you waiting for? Start planning your retreat TODAY!

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About Article Author

Gala Gorman
Gala Gorman

According to Gala, “Retreat facilitation is one of the most rewarding things she does.” Gala holds a Master’s Degree in Human Development, is a certified public accountant, certified financial planner, published author, executive development coach and business consultant with over 25 years of experience. She can be reached at (702) 386-4111 or by e-mail at Gala@MetaCommIntl.com.

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