Ever caught yourself doodling during a team meeting, or zoning out during a conference call? Don't worry, you're not alone. As a one-off, that just means you’re having a bad day. But over time that disengagement starts to look a lot like quiet quitting — something that almost 60% of workers are experiencing, according to Gallup.
So how can you shake off boredom and re-engage your teams? There are lots of tactics to try, and team insights go about this by getting people out of their comfort and daily routines. This lets HR teams give your employees a break from the office, shaking off the cobwebs by having fun in a new environment.
What are Team Offsites?
Team offsites are team get-togethers outside of their normal work environments for the purpose of big-picture and long-term thinking.
Offsites can be powerful engines for change. They break the mold of regular office work, pulling teams out of their usual settings and nestling them into an inspiring environment. These meetings, whether conducted in a quiet countryside cabin or an adventurous outdoor location, provide an environment for brainstorming, strategic planning, team-building, and more. They shed their daily routines, let loose, and charge up for future challenges.
These are more than fun excursions. They're about fostering deeper connections, shaking off old habits, and sparking innovative ideas. Through carefully planned activities and open conversations, offsites can ignite a fire of creativity and collaboration among team members. They pave the way for a more unified, energized, and forward-thinking team.
How to Plan a Team Offsite
If planning a team offsite seems daunting, fear not. Following a few simple steps can empower you to arrange offsite that goes off without a hitch.
- Identify the Purpose
Before you plunge into the planning process, identify what you hope to achieve. Is it team-building? Strategic planning? Celebrating achievements? Tailor your offsite to align with these goals.
- Allocate the Budget
The budget can make or break your event. Understand what funds you have and how best to allocate them. Account for location, food, activities, and any potential unexpected costs. Remember, a great offsite doesn't have to break the bank. Look for cost-effective options and negotiate group discounts if you have a big team.
- Choose the Right Location
The location should amplify your goals. Need brainstorming? Try a serene retreat. Team-building? An adventure park. The location sets the stage for your offsite's success. Don't forget about practical aspects. Is it easily accessible by everyone on your team? Does it have necessary amenities? Ensuring comfort and convenience will keep your participants focused on the goals.
- Plan Activities
Include activities that your team wouldn't experience in a regular work setting. Try to find activities to foster collaboration and camaraderie. To help find activities that are a good fit for your team, gather feedback on activity preferences beforehand.
- Craft the Agenda
Once you’ve got a location and activities sorted, craft an agenda that reflects it. You may want to mix fun activities with work-related ones. Incorporate sessions that foster interaction, creativity, and discussion.
- Collect Feedback
After the offsite, gather feedback. Understand what worked and what didn't. This will help improve future offsites.
Team Offsite Ideas
Gone are the days when team offsites meant stuffy conference rooms and lukewarm coffee. This is your chance to show your team that you truly value them and want to provide a great employee experience! Let's kick it up a notch and plan some offsite activities to inspire innovation and camaraderie.
- Wellness Retreat
A wellness retreat is like hitting the refresh button. Your team swaps stress for calm, allowing them to reconnect with their inner selves. Think of activities that would equip your team for resilience like yoga classes, guided meditation, mindfulness sessions, and nutrition workshops. By the end, your team won’t just be closer — they’ll be healthier, happier, and rejuvenated.
- Adventure Sports
Looking for something with a bit more energy? Let's crank it up a notch with an adrenaline-fueled day. Picture your team zip-lining through forests, white-water rafting, or navigating an obstacle course. These activities challenge the mind and body, stirring courage, trust, and teamwork. It's a perfect way to keep the energy high and morale even higher.
- Creative Workshops
What about something less physical, to get your creative juices flowing? Arts and crafts workshops like pottery classes, painting sessions, or beginner woodworking offer a fun, relaxed atmosphere to learn something new together. These hands-on activities help your team discover hidden talents and nurture their creative sides.
You could customize the workshop to reflect your company’s values or upcoming projects. The crafts could be auctioned for charity or adorn the office. Your team's shared creations serve as enduring testaments to their collaboration and creativity.
- Cooking Classes or Food Tastings
Discover the secret chefs within your team. Take them on a culinary adventure – cooking classes, wine tastings, or food tours. Cooking together strengthens team bonds and encourages collaboration within your team. Plus, the shared meals become memorable stories in your company’s folklore.
- Tech-Free Nature Camp
Sometimes, unplugging is the best way to recharge. A tech-free nature camp could be the detox your team needs. Fresh air, hiking, campfires, and star-gazing — these experiences encourage real conversations and deeper connections. Let your team appreciate the simplicity of nature and the complexity of camaraderie.
- Team Volunteering
You could also use team offsites to support charities or causes in your local community. For example, you could work with your local homeless shelter to cook or put together care packages for people experiencing homelessness. You could also join local cleanup initiatives to clean your local park, beach, or part of your town. Team volunteer days can bring your team together by working towards a shared cause, and give everyone the buzz that comes from knowing they’re doing a good deed too.
Create an Environment That Always Supports Employees
Running team offsites can be an effective way to boost team morale and increase employee engagement. But you can’t run offsites every week (or even every month). Between the logistics and costs, that style of constant rejuvenation isn’t feasible.
A wellbeing program can help foster a culture of consistent revitalization. Seventy percent of workers who take part in a workplace wellness program report higher job satisfaction after enrollment, according to Aflac research. Improved employee satisfaction comes right back around to help the company through higher productivity, tenure, and engagement.
If you want to help employees stay energized and engaged with an employee wellness program, speak with a Gympass wellbeing specialist today.
- Aflac (n.d.) The 2022-2023 Aflac WorkForces Report. Retrieved July 20, 2023 from https://www.aflac.com/business/resources/aflac-workforces-report/default.aspx
- Gallup (n.d.) State of the Global Workplace: 2023 Report. Retrieved July 20, 2023 from https://www.gallup.com/workplace/349484/state-of-the-global-workplace-2022-report.aspx#ite-393248
- Gallup (n.d.) Employee Wellbeing Is Key for Workplace Productivity. Retrieved July 20, 2023 from https://www.gallup.com/workplace/215924/well-being.aspx
The Gympass Editorial Team empowers HR leaders to support worker wellbeing. Our original research, trend analyses, and helpful how-tos provide the tools they need to improve workforce wellness in today's fast-shifting professional landscape.