I was blessed to be invited to a team building/professional development offsite meeting with a missions driven Edtech company a while back.
It was in Bali, Indonesia and so of course I HAD to go….but while I was certainly excited about the prospect of enjoying this beautiful beach destination, I was also pleasantly surprised about the wonderful revelations that I received there.
I have attended a lot of conferences in my lifetime and I always walk away from them feeling motivated on some level but this offsite conference really stood out for me. In my opinion, it really nailed the heart of what an offsite conference should be and I want to share a few of my key take-aways.
Time spent getting to really know and build relationships with people is hands down one of the best time and money investments there is.
We were paired up in rooms which is not something that is typically done in a corporate setting but there is no better way to get to know someone…fast. It reminded me of missions trips that I have been on. The close quarters and commitment to the mission really knits people together like nothing else can. I talked on a personal level to people all across the company and across the world. It was truly the highlight of the event. I feel like I expanded and grew because of the people that I now know. I already know this investment is going to pay off for me personally but I am also convinced it will pay off in the company’s bottom line as well.
Getting to know yourself is the highest and best priority for your life.
We are so used to refining our elevator speeches and biographies in corporate settings, however, in this setting, the majority of the programming was self-reflection, introspection and sharing. This was powerful on so many levels. I am a very strong advocate and a personal practitioner of self-work because I know that once you are aware of and understand yourself, you can make better choices and those choices typically not only enhance you personally but tend to enhance people/teams around you. I love being transparent because I have seen first hand how it helps people and during this offsite, I got to do that on a larger scale and also to hear from others about things that really impact and/or challenge them. I felt like I got to know people’s hearts and not just their images.
And my third take-away was that we are our best as people, companies and in the world when we are sharing our gifts, talents and knowledge with one another.
In some settings, I got to be the expert and in some settings I was the student. It was a beautiful exchange, with no pressure to perform, just a natural exchange and sharing that enhanced me both personally and professionally.