How can you make your next real estate company retreat even more awesome?
While company getaways may have been neglected by newer real estate startups, they remain a powerful tool for team building, and getting more of the talent on hand. Via the Ignite Your Sales Team podcast, Rich Cohen names company retreats as one of the best tools for retaining top sales talent. Regardless of whether you are bootstrapping a new real estate startup or running a major brand, there are ways to make retreats even better. Here is how you can use real estate company retreats to boost your team’s productivity:
1. Destinations: Picking a great destination is certainly a good idea for getting more out of your corporate retreats. Whether you are planning day trips, or week long escapes, there are plenty of places to choose from. The deciding factor should be what you want out of the event. Do you currently need to drive in more business opportunities? Spark more creative thinking and inspiration? Or just let the team completely unwind and rejuvenate? Perhaps a non-tourist-centric city may uncover more deals during the process, get the crew acquainted with a destination you are doing business in, or just make them more appreciative of the location where you are selling properties. If they are sold on that value, they’ll make better sales people. Then there are cruises, sun-kissed beaches, mountain cabins, and trendy international tech cities. What will be unique for them?
2. Create Experiences: Even a well-traveled team may not have engaged in the experiences available in different destinations. Give them something memorable to anchor the event and your brand with. How about scuba diving, zip lining, or hiking up a mountain?
3. Buy the Place: Assuming that these retreats will be an annual occurrence, why not buy the place? Buy a cabin, ranch, regal waterfront estate, or small apartment building as a corporate investment and asset. Perhaps you can even lease it out to other real estate companies for their getaways when your firm isn’t using it. Perhaps you’ll even want to go as far as giving your team fractional shares in it.
4. Create Some Social Buzz: Don’t just enjoy the experience: maximize it. Document the event with pictures, quotes, and video. Get everyone involved in posting and conversing on social media. This will improve external engagement in a passive way, help draw others to your real estate brand, bond the team, and in the case of Facebook, can create automatic annual reminders of the awesome experience.
5. Invite Significant Others: Real estate companies that really want to strengthen bonds and increase participation may go as far as allowing staff to bring their significant others, and kids. When these partners don’t want your team members to leave your company, it is far less likely they will.
6. Unite the Team with Purpose: Don’t just send everyone on their way to find their own entertainment and activities. There should be time for individual exploration and pursuits, but have a plan to unite the team on the business mission, while developing your unique culture and team identity at the same time.
7. Engage the Team in Planning: It can be really disappointing when you plan any type of reward, only for it to feel like you wasted your time. Be proactive, maximize your time, and increase employee engagement by enrolling the team in planning your retreat, and giving them ownership of it.
8. Awards & Recognition: This is a great time to announce awards and recognize top performers. Give the rest something to strive for, without discouraging them.
9. Include Everyone: The structure of real estate companies and teams has changed dramatically over the last decade. Even the biggest corporations may only have a small core of in-house staff, augmented by many remote workers. These are key members of your team too. This may be one of the few occasions for really bringing them in and building the fabric of your organization.
10. Speakers & Sponsors
Inviting speakers to pump up the team during this time can be a great way to elevate and anchor the experience, while adding more value. Note that this, and the entire expense, can potentially be offset using sponsors. This can apply to everything from the venue to food.
Corporate retreats and company getaways can be very powerful for real estate organizations of all sizes. Just make sure you take a moment to really maximize the opportunity, and put your best people on it.