You already have a lot on your to-do list! Workspaces evolving from in-person to fully remote to hybrid, team restructuring, new products, redefined company goals... the list goes on. None of this makes managing new projects any easier. However, planning your next company off-site doesn't have to make your list even more complicated. With unique turnkey options, planning can be easy AND fun.
Everyone wants to make sure their company off-site meetings, retreats, and marketing events stand out while enhancing attendee engagement. This takes some time, some planning, and some forethought.
48% of event planners begin planning for their event 6-12 months in advance.
46% of event planners say that creating content and building their event agenda are the most time-consuming aspects of event planning. (Bizzabo)
Turnkey activities offer a lot of ease where the logistics and details are all included. They can be a snap to orchestrate; however, they can also feel impersonal and generic. But that doesn't have to be the case! Through storytelling, immersive content, hybrid experiences, and authenticity, you can explore many original ideas that make any company off-site an engaging event, keeping it exciting while keeping it simple.
Are you holding a meeting to make specific decisions? Will you be entertaining clients? Do you need your team engaged in that process? Are you looking to build stronger bonds internally throughout the year? Do you have a theme in mind? Asking yourself these questions will help you determine where to look for options.
In terms of event planning professionals and corporate leadership teams, 91% measure the success of an event based on attendee satisfaction; 61% measure according to their specific event objectives; and 60% determine results based on staying within budget (EventMB, 2018).
Attendee priorities are:
Though these stats are based on all types of corporate events, the trends apply equally to team building and internal team meetings. In 2019, team building events were the most commonly planned internal event. While formats have since changed, finding ways to connect employees remains as important as ever, especially as people continue to work from home or have hybrid work schedules (EventMB, 2019). Even with the impacts of COVID-19, internal team meetings and trainings are the most common meeting activity type (Global Meetings & Events Forecast, 2021).
- 19% of the market in 2020 in Europe and Central/South America
- 17% in North America
- 16% in Asia Pacific
No matter your goals, 57% of attendees believe that they can conduct most of their event objectives online (Reed Exhibitions, 2020). As a bonus, streaming experiences can reduce total climate pollution from events by 60-98% (Eventcellany, 2020). In 2019, 39% of event professionals agree that ‘engaging attendees’ is the most crucial element of any live event (EventMB, 2019) and 34% of planners consider increased attendance the most positive result of pivoting to virtual, followed by lower overhead costs. While 66.5% of eventprofs plan to use hybrid as their go-to format once in-person events resume (EventMB, 2020).
Given attendee priorities, consider how you can facilitate these types of objectives virtually, in-person, AND in hybrid settings:
Business Networking: virtual breakout rooms, progressive dinners, or programs like Skip the Small Talk (optional for all settings)
Learning Something New: cook or make food (personal skill development tends to have more appeal than workforce development), host a hackathon
Entertainment & Self-Improvement: for best results, make this immersive and combine with learning something new e.g. Improv, cooking, board breaking
Time Out of the Office: even if you event is virtual, hybrid, or hosted partially on-site, giving folks a break from “the grind” is key, so don’t make your entire meeting about work-places speeches and give everyone something fun to do
Many of these options can be included in turnkey event solutions if you know where to look.
Location, location, location is everything.
As vaccinations increase and COVID-19 restrictions decrease, in=person meetings and events are already on the rise. Approximately 21% of eventprofs believe small and simple meetings will be the most common type of meeting held in 2021, in all formats (in-person, hybrid, and virtual), followed by internal meetings at 18% (Global Meetings & Events Forecast, 2021). Additionally, most eventprofs believe that in-person events will return in the second half of 2021 — 30% are betting on Q3, while 27.5% believe they'll return in Q2 (EventMB, 2020).
In 2019, 76% of corporate planners used their own space to host events. This means that they had an easier time securing low-risk, socially distant spaces for speakers and presenters or simply facilitating these events from home. In a post-Covid era, planners have little interest in what destinations normally have to offer – less than 2% consider attractions to be the most important factor when selecting an event destination while 56% of planners value safety standards above all else when it comes to choosing a venue for their next event, vs 37% for destinations themselves. This suggests planners expect venues to carry more weight than the cities or countries selected for events when it comes to safeguarding their attendees (EventMB, 2020).
This also means that venues are already experiencing these trends and expect to deliver what you need. Turnkey locations that offer a full range of services (e.g. catering, seating, wait staff, and event design) when planning your company off-site event or meeting. Luxury hotel resorts offer full-service solutions for these types of off-site gatherings. They offer both the event space for lectures, presentations, and banquets and room accommodations for multi-day events. Country Clubs and resorts can provide both complete turnkey services and offer flexibility in the style of event you want to have. They can provide meeting spaces, spas, tennis and golf lessons, and indoor and outdoor event spaces.
These are some luxurious options if you have the budget. Since budget is one of the most important factors while planning a company off-site, you may want to consider other turnkey options that deliver the fun without breaking your wallet.
Hire some help!
The biggest challenge for corporate planners is staying on budget (44%), and budgets into 2020 and beyond are going to be severely impacted by COVID-19. No matter your approach, 45.9% of event planners rely on in-house production for the production aspect of their hybrid and virtual events, while 32.5% are outsourcing this aspect to external production companies and 21.6% rely on their virtual event tech providers (EventMB, 2020).
If you are concerned that you don’t have the knowledge or time needed to stage a successful company off-site, an event planning service or destination manager can help. Large event planning services can be indispensable in organizing and staging bigger, multi-day events, helping you provide an easy-to-navigate gathering with various activities to entertain your guests. In contrast, more local event coordinators may offer you better insight into regional vendors and activities that would suit your needs. Large or small, event planners tend to have networks to offer unique options and lots of potential discounts. This can compensate for the additional expense of an event planner or save you even more money than planning on your own entirely.
If your company has multiple locations in different cities, or if you are interested in other options like ticketed events and customized event websites, companies like EventStub offer packages and consultation to suit all your creative ideas. There are myriad options for you to find the perfect fit for your company off-site event. These days, venues and event planners know that top priorities are flexibility and versatility. Providing an event that is accessible both virtually and in-person is key, and having activities with broad appeal is paramount, so no one feels left out.
Using easy tools like Doodle Polls can help you get input from your employees on what they think will make a great company off-site. You can poll them on their favorite activities, the best times of their workweeks to schedule your retreat, and what they'd like to take away from their time at your event. Putting that information together with the right turnkey vendor can help you put on a fun and rewarding event. A successful company off-site event will help recharge your team, make them feel appreciated and engaged in their work and their fellow team members. Recent Gallup polls on the global workplace show companies with a highly engaged workforce are 21% more profitable. All these resources will give you the tools to stage an exciting company event with ease.
With tinyB Chocolates, your event is hosted by an expert chocolatier that will discuss your team’s specific needs and culture before your team building experience. You can also order customized boxes of Brazilian Brigadeiros Truffles, complete with your company logo and branding.
With our virtual, hybrid, AND in-person options, each of your team members receive a chocolate kit, complete with everything they will need to make beautiful, delicious truffles. Everyone is then invited to participate in a live chocolate-making class. With chocolate-themed games and competitions, your employees will be laughing with delight.
Best of all, this is an event which can be enjoyed from any location with internet access. If you have a team working both on-site at your offices and online from home, this is a great way to include everyone. Hybrid workplaces are more common than ever, so hosting a versatile and flexible company off-site that can be participated in both in-person and virtually is a great choice. With options available for under $50 per participant, there's simply no virtual team-building event on the market that employees love so much for such a small investment.