So you’re finally getting ready to plan your company’s first corporate retreat. This can be an exciting process, but can also cause financial strain on the company if improperly planned. A lot of planning should go into your first retreat, and you’ll want to be sure you pay close attention to any mistakes, so the next retreat is more streamlined and flawless. Here are six essential finance tips you’ll need for going on your first corporate retreat.
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1. Plan Ahead of Time
This is the most important component of a successful first retreat. If you don’t plan ahead of time, you won’t be able to navigate any issues that could arise, and you’ll be “stuck in the mud” so to speak when it comes to the financial burden of such an event.
Retreats are going to be costly, there’s simply no way around it. A three day Hudson Valley retreat can cost anywhere from $100 per person to $400 per person per night if you need lodging. This can add up quickly, and when combined with other costs like travel expenses and activities, the cost will likely exceed what you’d originally thought.
This is why planning is absolutely vital to your retreat. Finding the right venue at the right price can take months; sifting through endless ads, websites, and promotional emails to find that perfect destination. Give yourself ample time to plan, so you’ll be able to adjust your plan for any unforeseen circumstances and maximize the money you save by comparing venue prices and packages.
2. Hire an Event Planner
Not sure you’re up to the task of planning the retreat by yourself? No worries! Event planners are professionals who…well, plant events! Their entire expertise is on planning, booking, and managing large events like weddings, retreats, conferences, and more. These experts can help you find the best deals on venues and even help reduce the stress of planning everything by yourself.
If you’re unfamiliar with retreat venues and pricing, an event planner is probably your best bet. They’ll help you find that perfect venue that exists within your price range, so you’ll be able to easily stick to the budget while still booking a great venue for the retreat.
If you’re unsure whether or not your business’s finances will even allow for a retreat, you can hire a financial advisor to help grant you some perspective into what you can actually afford. Financial advisors are well-versed in personal and business finances and can help you identify a budget and savings plan to meet the financial burden of your retreat. You can compare the best financial advisors on Carefulcents.com.
3. Create an RSVP List
You’ll likely be charged on a per-person basis by your venue, so you’ll want to have an accurate RSVP list to go off of when planning your event. Give your team the RSVP details many months beforehand, and allow them a few weeks or up to a month to respond. It’s best to keep things stringent with this list and make a strict due-by date for the team to RSVP by.
With an accurate RSVP list, you’ll know exactly how many people are attending your retreat. From there, you can better plan for the venue, activities, and overall cost of the trip.
4. Choose the Right Venue
Choosing the best venue for your retreat will ensure you’re within budget, while also providing a memorable location for the event. While a retreat should certainly be productive, you also want to include downtime for your employees to relax. The venue you choose should uphold both of these factors, providing both a focused and relaxed environment for maximum productivity and relaxation.
The right venue can make all the difference in what gets accomplished and how memorable the retreat is. Company retreats don’t have to be boring or uneventful; with so many venues to choose from, you can find extra-curricular activities that will be fun for everyone. Many retreats include such recreational activities as hiking, canoeing, kayaking, and more.
5. Only Make it as Long as it Needs to Be
You probably don’t need your retreat to be longer than a few days. Any longer than that, and the price will skyrocket, and employee retention will plummet. Not to mention, the longer your employees spend away from their posts, the less work gets done.
Three days is a pretty standard time limit for company retreats. It’s just enough time to feel like a mini-vacation, without causing too much conflict in scheduling or productivity. Of course, you can plan your retreats to be as long as you like; just remember, the longer the retreat, the higher the cost.
6. Compare Prices-Always!
Anytime you’re shopping around for a retreat venue, you should always be comparing prices. This is where an event planner can really shine, as they’ll have insider knowledge of venues and when the best prices are available. Prices will vary based on demand and time of year, so it’s important to compare and contrast the amenities and prices of each venue you’re considering.
Your first retreat should be memorable and cost-effective, while still achieving the overall goal that you set out to accomplish in the first place. By hiring expert help, planning ahead of time, and gaining a realistic perspective on the company’s finances, you can choose the right venues and activities to guarantee your first retreat is one that will be talked about for years to come.