A 5 Point Plan For A Corporate Away Day To Remember

The corporate away day is now a mainstay of our professional culture - a way for teams to break the cycle of the day-to-day and change how they work together. But as an events manager it can be difficult to come up with innovative ideas that break the mould and keep your colleagues and clients engaged with your event and its end goals.

To help you organise a simple and effective away day, our experienced event managers have set out their five most important considerations so the whole process is a rewarding and worthwhile exercise for everyone.

1. Start with structure

Be sure to understand the three key cornerstones of any effective working day - breakfast, lunch and a trip to the pub! Kick the day off right with a healthy, energising breakfast - light but filling, and lots of coffee. Lunch should be flexible, and offer people the chance to get some fresh air - there’s nothing worse than being cooped up indoors all day.

When choosing your venue, think about your end-of-day plan. One of the primary aims of any away day should be to bring teams closer together and develop relationships that can have a positive impact on how people work with each other - hosting drinks in your venue or taking a trip to a local bar or pub is a great opportunity for this.

2. Listen and build

Shoehorning your team into an experience ill-suited to their talents or interests will hinder rather than help development and learning on an away day.

At the start of each quarter, reflect on your businesses’ ambitions for the year ahead - this will help you to craft an event that reflects and supports these aims. Consult with team leaders to see if there are big decisions, changes or clients that need to be discussed or developed collectively - an away day is the perfect listening exercise.

3. Consider comfort zones

The mission is not to make your colleagues uncomfortable - rather, show them a different way of spending time together as a team. When you talk of corporate team building, many people’s minds immediately jump to treetop assault courses and three-legged races. But this isn’t necessary. It’s often far better to simply book a pleasant new environment - a bright, modern, fully-equipped conference venue in London or elsewhere - to inspire interactions that make a difference to how you work. To keep the day varied, consider both morning and afternoon venues - with one more focused on discussion and the other on activity.

4. Plurality of voices

Whilst it’s obviously key that management see results and cover the topics they regard as important, for a collective result that everybody finds constructive, make sure that the structure of the day offers the opportunity for people from across the company to share their opinions and feedback. That doesn’t mean opening up the floor to questions in an unstructured forum - try something as simple as reversing the power structure for a problem-solving task, or mixing people who wouldn’t normally work together.

5. Takeaways

It may be nominated for ‘Least Popular Corporate Buzzword’ of recent times, but developing an actionable forward plan to take what is shared back to the workplace is fundamental to a successful, worthwhile team building day.

If teams can agree to targets and delivery dates for change, all the better. Hold follow-up discussions with key parties to make sure changes are enacted and the next away day will be just as productive.

For more information about planning a corporate away day with Better Venues, contact us or explore our locations.

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