5 Reasons Small Businesses Need to Get the Team Out of the Office

I have been around strategic planning and off-sites for the better part of 20 years. There’s a misconception that these concepts are created by and for the exclusive benefit of large corporations. I believe, however, that no matter the size of your organization, having a business plan is critical.  As Benjamin Franklin said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” 

So let’s talk about the value of getting out of the office for a few days to spend time ON the business!

As Mantralogix approaches its Fiscal 2015 year-end, we are embarking on reflection and celebration and at the same time on setting goals for ourselves for Fiscal 2016. We have done this with great rigour now for five years straight, engaging all MantraTeam members in the process. Each year the structure changes slightly – sometimes we use the SWOT framework (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats), sometimes Start, Stop, Continue. We have set our BHAG (big, hairy, audacious goal), and even used the time to formulate our Mission, Vision, Values.


Yet despite all of this value, many companies (I daresay most companies) don’t give themselves this gift of time. The first two years we took a total of 1 day to be away with our full team; last week we evolved our investment to 3 FULL DAYS. What, you ask, could we possibly talk about for 3 FULL DAYS? Well, the time flew by and at the end of the 3 days our teams asked if they could have one more day to flush out divisional goals!

Here are the 5 major benefits we achieved by being out of the office:

  1. Set the roadmap for the year ahead. You know the adage – if you don’t know where you are going, how will you know when you get there? All team members had input into the roadmap and hence are vested in achieving it. It’s OUR plan, and now that we know where the organization needs to end up, everyone can go about setting individual goals to get us there.
  2. We are inspired. By talking about the end goal, we can ALL see it. By openly talking about the future we have a common vision of it – and we can share this with our partners and vendors and they too can be more effective in helping us get there.
  3. Team Building. The team articulated that working together, away from the office, on one common goal, brought us closer together. Despite best intentions, there is never enough time in our day-to-day schedule to allow us to dream together.
  4. Skill Development. Most people haven’t been formally exposed to goal planning and strategic thinking in their education and careers. Each year when we get together, we help raise the bar on strategic planning as a team and as individuals; we also take the time to address the most common item on employee development plans. This year it was time management and prioritization.
  5. We let the Universe know what we collectively want. There’s a caution here – be careful what you ask for! Be very clear about what you want, articulate it, revisit it quarterly, and then watch it unfold!

We are passionate in our beliefs around planning. Trust the process – it will never fail you!

Interested in doing the same for your organization?  We are happy to help!  Contact us at 1-866-320-8922 and let’s talk about investing in your human capital.


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