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In a world going increasingly virtual, sometimes it’s necessary to get everyone together in the same place. It could be a corporate event halfway across the country, a long-term temporary job, or a refreshing bonding session outside of the daily grind.
Whatever the reason for your upcoming get-together, a business trip is on the agenda, and it’s your job to plan it.
Just because you have to pull off a corporate meeting doesn’t mean it has to be boring and stuffy. Use these four tips to provide your team with an exceptional time mixing business with leisure, and you’ll all get more out of the trip.
1. Choose a Popular Destination
If the target city is up to you, make it one that most people will enjoy.
You probably won’t please everyone, no matter where you book the trip. Some people are more at home on a mountain top resort, while others prefer a tropical paradise.
You know your team best, so aim for a place that serves your business purposes and offers perks most everyone will enjoy, too.
Keep in mind things like travel time, mask and vaccine mandates, and hotel accommodations. Since you’re probably paying for the lodging, this part is up to you. Look for hotels that allow extended stays if the trip is going to be longer than one week.
2. Set A Structured, But Flexible Itinerary
Every business trip needs at least a little structure. Unless you’re sending your team out for a straight-up vacation, there’s a purpose for the traveling.
However, you don’t have to single-handedly account for every minute of their 9 to 5 daily agenda. Let them have some time to sightsee and relax.
Ideally, the first day after traveling shouldn’t be spent cooped up in a meeting room for hours. Some of your team will be jet-lagged, chomping at the bit to explore, or tired from the previous day’s travel journey.
If you have to meet that day, keep it short and to the point. Then, give everyone time to get their bearings. Save the heavy stuff for the next day.
3. Put Safety First
Not everyone is comfortable traveling alone, especially now that we’re all still recovering from the pandemic.
You should do everything possible to ensure the destination is relatively safe, although it may be out of your hands if the city is predetermined. As you select lodging, look for those with COVID-19 sanitation provisions.
Still, many of the variables are out of your control. Accidents happen, germs are everywhere, and criminals can be anywhere.
Before you assume everyone will be on board with a business trip, find out their feelings about traveling in general. Are they okay with flying and being in crowds?
Don’t force someone to go on the trip if they fear for their safety. Give them an alternative way to learn the information everyone else gets by offering a live virtual session.
4. Plan a Team Bonding Event
Yes, we know, people roll their eyes at team bonding activities. But that’s because they’re usually the same old boring thing.
You, on the other hand, are putting on something exciting and innovative. So, your team activities are going to be creative.
If you’re not sure where to start looking for ideas, check out a few of these unique ways for your team to connect:
- A cross-city scavenger hunt (all travel expenses paid by the company, of course)
- A bonfire, s’mores, and scary workplace stories on the beach, or use whatever you have available
- A mystery theater dinner train
- An escape room
- A Survivor-themed Corporate Castaway activity
Some of these activities are found in most major cities, like the escape room and mystery theater dinner train. You may have to create your own material for the rest, but that can be even better because everything can be personalized to the team members.
A team bonding activity done right will help everyone connect on a deeper level. It can also turn into something that each person remembers long after the trip is over.
The next business trip on the horizon is your chance to show your team how much you appreciate them.
Stay away from the dreary corporate meetings. Instead, use these tips to plan an exceptional trip that combines leisure with your essential goals.