Imagine setting off on a cross-country road trip without a map or GPS. You might eventually reach your destination, but the journey would be filled with detours, setbacks and missed opportunities. That’s the risk your business takes when it doesn’t dedicate time for a team planning day!
In today’s fast-paced business world, it’s easy to get caught up in day-to-day operations and lose sight of the bigger picture. That’s why taking time out for a strategic planning day, where your team can step back, refocus and set a clear course for the year ahead, is just so important. It’s a brilliant opportunity to get everyone on board with the company vision and facilitate some good old team bonding, preparing your business (and your team) for a successful year ahead.
Of course, you can’t just wing a planning day… ironically, you need to plan it. Here are some key elements you need to consider when you’re mapping out the day’s activities.
1. Setting the GPS for Success
Your annual planning day is a time to review the past year’s achievements and challenges, identify what worked and what didn’t and chart a course for the year ahead. It provides a rare chance to get everyone on the same page, and help your team align their efforts with the company’s strategic goals.
It’s your chance to help everyone understand the ‘why’ behind their daily tasks, giving them a real sense of purpose and direction. Studies show that 72% of employees are driven by having purpose and meaning in their work, so this plays a huge part in helping engage, motivate and retain your staff.
2. Encouraging Collaboration and Engagement
Your annual planning day isn’t just about executive decisions and strategic direction; it’s a team-building opportunity too. Bringing your entire team together to brainstorm, share ideas and contribute to planning can unleash some fabulously innovative solutions and give everyone a sense of ownership over the company’s goals.
When employees from different areas of your business come together to plan, they naturally gain a deeper understanding of each other’s challenges and needs too, fostering empathy and cooperation that lasts long after the day’s activities have concluded. This collaborative approach promotes a more cohesive and effective work environment and helps break down those tricky departmental silos.
3. Breaking the Routine
Your annual planning day should be FUN, something everyone looks forward to. After all, this is your chance to step away from the rinse-and-repeat office routine and infuse some excitement into your workplace. Consider holding the planning day offsite or in a unique location to shake things up.
Think about incorporating team-building activities, icebreakers and games into the day to keep the atmosphere light and engaging. The goal is to encourage creativity and open dialogue, so think outside the box!
4. Getting Expert Insight
Ever heard the saying, “Sometimes it’s not the message, it’s the messenger?” It’s true. In fact we wrote a whole blog post about how true it is. Having an expert business or sales strategist share their insights can be a game-changer. It’s not about cheesy motivational speeches or empty buzzwords – it’s about tapping into the knowledge and experience of someone who has walked the walk.
An external speaker can provide a fresh perspective, challenge your team’s assumptions and introduce cutting-edge strategies. Input from the right speaker can really light up your team and be a huge catalyst for innovation and growth. Luckily, we have some of the best business and sales minds in the business ready to share their insights and expertise!
5. Accountability and Follow-through
A successful planning day is just the beginning. To ensure your efforts bear fruit, it’s essential to establish clear goals, assign responsibilities and set deadlines. Regular check-ins throughout the year are also important to help you track progress and course-correct as necessary. Your annual planning day sets the stage, but the real magic happens when you put those plans into action!
We understand that planning days require time out of your usual operations, and that costs money. But investing in a dedicated day to reflect, engage and strategise as a team really does set you up for a successful year ahead. In fact, it might just be the best investment you make all year!
We have some of the world’s best Business Speakers and Sales Speakers ready to help you turbocharge your 2024 Planning Day. If you’d like us to introduce you to any of the speakers above, or talk to us about curating a list of speaker options specific to your needs, simply get in touch with us to get the ball rolling!