Lead an off-site event that leaves your team energized and focused:
1. Know when a team-building exercise is successful. How will you know if you’ve achieved your goal?
When Timberland Co. executives needed to revamp and add new products, they held an off-site event to jump-start things. They invited designers, engineers and marketers from the company to spend one week hashing it out, a process that normally takes years. Result: They met their goals. Says VP Doug Clark, “Having that concrete goal allowed us to walk the line between exploring creative flights of fancy and remaining results driven.”
2. Make sure the team-building exercise relates to solving a real problem.
During Ford’s off-site event, Carolyn Lantz, executive director of brand imaging, gave executives $50 each and put them on a bus to an Old Navy store. “I told them, ‘You have 20 minutes to find and purchase an outfit that you have to wear tomorrow. You are busy people looking for great design at a great price. Those are Ford’s customers.’” The exercise made a point: Ford’s products need to be well designed, but democratically priced.