What´s your Drip, Drip?
Imagine living in a house with leaking pipe in the loft. On a day to day basis it probably goes unnoticed and the damage to the house is nugatory. Left unchecked, the innocuous drip, drip can wreck unimaginable damage to the roof of the house. However, in the silence of the night when everyone is asleep you can focus on the gentle drip, drip of the drops of water which allow you to assess the short, medium and long-term damage before you prescribe a solution.
Time to Fix the Leaks
Similarly, when we take those quiet moments for ourselves this is when we can hear our own drip, drip, and take remedial action.
I am convinced that in today´s crazy-paced existence, the best way to speed up is to slow down. It is imperative to take regular pit-stops and assess the leaky pipes in our professional and personal arenas.
September is a month in the corporate cycle when many companies decide to take a pit stop. Teams have come back from their summer recess and typically need to re-focus whilst simultaneously being hit by the realisation that summer is coming to an end, winter is on its way and the next break is Christmas!
If you are planning your company off-site this year consider these 5 points for optimum results:
1. Less is more – An action packed 3-day program that leaves every member of the team totally spent is not always the right answer. I am a fan of creating free time "spaces" in the program. These are carefully planned (but apparently random) gaps in the off-site which leave space for unstructured learnings and journeys of self-discovery among the participants.
2. Get outside – As far as budget and logistics permit, try and include an outdoor element to the program. Nature has a perfect way of soothing our consciousness and generating creativity.
3. Plan way ahead – A well timed, sublimely planned off-site event can have long lasting effects on the team and its individuals. I remember being contacted 9 months in advance by the CEO of a multinational company to organise their event in January (not September) and his words to me were, -“Tony, we hold client facing events all the time, but I get more nervous organising my company off-site because I cannot afford to let my team down.”
4. Know the Team – There are normally at least 3 entities involved in designing an off-site. The Team, the Facilitators, the Organiser. The most important part of the tripod is the TEAM. If the program is set up with a direct focus on how to optimise the experience for the team, the experience will be a success.
5. Coaching is Key – A top coach can make the difference between a fun, jolly and a productive offsite that creates new connections and memorable experiences. Working with a coach that understands your team and the stakeholder concerns is imperative. The coach’s job is to work with you and co-create the learning experience against the back drop of some clearly defined objectives – always leaving room for the unexpected.
Remember, the idea of an off-site is to create moments to tune into the drip, drip and find some creative solutions in a fun, unique environment.