Is is that time of year again? Time to organise the team away day or strategy day. To be successful Strategy Days need to generate ideas, be done in an environment that stimulates freedom of thought and involve the right people. Without a clear plan and enough structure you cannot have a successful strategy day.
There is a risk the strategy day could become a pointless talking shop where the loudest voice wins or where eventually the accountant begins to hyperventilate and forces everyone to come up with a “realistic” budget to ensure you get something tangible out the day. Don’t let this happen to you. Armed with these top tips for planning and facilitating a business away day of any kind, you can be confident of success.
Get your outcomes clear.
Don’t try and tackle every business issue you have in one day. Being clear on why you are having the day will allow you to communicate that message before hand so that everyone knows, or should know, why they are coming along and what they are expecting to contribute. Taking time over the ‘why’ will save you time, energy and possibly money later in the process.
Have someone responsible for managing boundaries.
Bad group dynamics can render a Strategy Day as a waste of time and have a major impact on morale. If you are using a facilitator then they should set and maintain boundaries and if not whoever is leading the day should. It is not enough to say - people need to be allowed to speak, all ideas welcome and we want people to be open. These boundaries need to be maintained. If someone speaks over someone else, they need to be reminded. If someone is open they should not be attacked, ridiculed or put down in any way. Spend a short amount of time on it at the start and have someone make sure they are maintained throughout the day.
Download Karen & John’s guide to Successful Strategy Days.
Founder of Monkey Puzzle and an INLPTA NLP Master Trainer, Karen is also a UKCP registered Psychotherapist and author of the award winning book Real Leaders for the Real World. Her new book Time Mastery; Banish Time Management Forever is out now.