Here are the benefits of having company offsites — and some ideas you can use for your workforce.
As vaccinations and boosters increase while Omicron decreases, this spring of 2022 is looking like life might just return to as close to normal as any of us can remember from the pre-2020 days.
Working remotely has been great for many, especially those who have been using it to travel the country or the world. But at the same time, it’s been a struggle — not just for individuals, but for teams and small businesses employees in particular who were used to working face-to-face with their coworkers.
It’s too soon to call everyone back to the office, but — depending on your particular business, employees, and location — it might not be too soon to start coming together as teams or even as companies again.
Why not get everyone together if you can to make up for some of what has been lost during the remote working era of the pandemic? Whether you’re looking for ideas about how to organize a company offsite this year or hadn’t really thought of it until now but are curious about how it could work, here’s how to bring back the company offsite in 2022.
The benefits of a company offsite
There’s no single way to organize or utilize a company offsite. Every company uses offsites differently. The goal can be team building. A company offsite can also be about employee recognition or an opportunity to come together to create long-term visions and plans for the future.
These days though, one of the central benefits is an opportunity for all of your employees to come together — some, perhaps, for the first time if they were hired during the pandemic.
“Managers are betting that off-sites will help their workers feel invested even when a remote job can feel like little more than an abstracted paycheck,” reads a New York Times article. Especially for those in computer-based, remote-friendly jobs.
According to Bureau of Labor Statistics data, “in January, nearly half of workers employed in the computer and math fields said they had worked from home at some point because of the pandemic,” the article continues. Further, “bosses with growing teams and a lot of their plates have landed on off-sites as [a] way to build culture and retain workers.”
There’s a lot that comes from coming together. It makes company-wide communication more direct and effective. This is thanks in part to the ability of employees to ask questions and spend time with leadership during an offsite — an opportunity that can be hard to come by otherwise.
Especially after the Zoom fatigue that so many have suffered from since the pandemic took hold, even using an offsite to simply refresh from years of meeting virtually can be a benefit by itself.
Every company uses offsites differently. The goal can be team building. A company offsite can also be about employee recognition or an opportunity to come together to create long-term visions and plans for the future.
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Ideas for company offsites in 2022
The key to a successful offsite is organizing a day that employees won’t want to miss. Of course, that’s going to look different at every company thanks to its unique crop of employees.
This is definitely a time when an employee survey can come in handy. You don’t have to struggle to guess at what your employees want — you can just ask them. It’s impossible to please everyone, but an employee survey can help give you an idea of what will make your offsite day unmissable.
One way to make a company offsite unmissable can be to make it hardly work-focused at all. Especially if what your employees have been missing is simply the face-to-face time they used to have, why not keep it casual? An offsite in 2022 can simply mean not online.
If you still have office space, why not host a movie night along with a dinner, happy hour, or ice cream and popcorn social so that everyone can just have a chance to spend time together again. If you have employees who aren’t ready to travel yet, this can be a particularly fitting option.
Another option for a casual offsite can be a game night. Offer up a bunch of board games or get creative by getting a blank Cards Against Humanity set and design the questions and answers to be all about your company and the people in it. You could also do something of a DIY Amazing Race around your neighborhood or city.
Then there’s the more traditional activities like a mirror maze, an escape room, or a Topgolf session. For companies with bigger budgets, you can plan an activity filled day like bringing in a chef or yoga teacher for private cooking or yoga classes (or both!).
Plan it yourself — or hire someone to take care of it for you
Because of the break that the pandemic created in offsites, once mundane company offsites like can have a fresh, new feel to them than they did before.
Maybe you’re just not into the chaos that can come with event planning. There’s always the option of letting someone else do it for you. Businesses like The Offsite Co. are there to do exactly that — take all the planning and stress off of you.
Remember, there’s no right or wrong way to go about hosting an offsite for your company. It’s about understanding your employees, their needs, and your company’s goals and planning accordingly (or hiring someone else to!). As long as you ensure that nothing gets out of hand, you’re probably on the right track.