Planning a killer summer corporate retreat for your team requires some creativity and foresight. You have to strike the right balance between fun, relaxation, and bonding. That’s why it’s best to plan ahead and have some set activities to structure your time. We’ve compiled five our favorite summer corporate retreat ideas that guarantee a successful time out of the office together.
1. Play Corporate Survivor
If you’ve got a fun-loving and adventurous set of employees, playing a game of Survivor in the style of the television show is the perfect summer corporate retreat for your company. You’ll divide your employees into teams that will be put to the test in a variety of challenges. These challenges can be both physical and related to problem solving. Rather than voting members “off the island” though, corporate Survivor is about strengthening bonds and promoting team building.
Tailor the games and challenges however you like. You can choose activities that suit your employee’s skillset or that bring out their more latent skills. You can get silly or athletic or cerebral! As seen on the beloved television show The Office, you can set up Sumo wrestling with large inflatable sumo suits. You can have teams blindfold a member and guide them in a race. You can even have a hotdog eating contest if you so desire! Take it in any direction you want, as long as everybody is having fun and working together. Endow each challenge with a point value so that as each team’s points begin to rack up, the competition will intensify. At the end of Survivor, the team left standing with the most points win.
2. Go on a Scavenger Hunt
A Scavenger Hunt is a great way to get to know your employees better while having a laugh and running around. Plant clues around your retreat area that sends your groups to the next clue until the final clue is reached. Of course, you’ll have to come up with a great prize for the winners who reach the end of the scavenger hunt first! Some of the cards can include funny challenges or photo setups. Make sure everybody takes pictures with their phones for proof! Better yet, hand out a polaroid camera to each group so that they collect tangible snapshots of their challenges and activities throughout the scavenger hunt.
3. Compete in Out-of-the-Office Olympics
Like with Survivor, you’ll want to divide your employees up into teams. They can choose their countries and dress themselves accordingly. Encourage everyone to get really into it! The different countries can compete in all sorts of sporting events. Grab some canoes or kayaks and race around the lake. Bonus points if you make it a relay with each team member having to hop in and paddle, one after the other until the whole team has had a turn. Play a game of basketball or volleyball and see the teams be forced to work together as a unit. Sometimes the best way to bond and strengthen your team is to get outside of your head. Engaging in competitive and physical activities can really bring a group of people together in a way that sitting around a conference table cannot.
If your company is booze-friendly, consider playing Beer Olympics. You compete with a series of outdoor drinking games. This gets everyone relaxed and having a fun and silly time. You can play Dizzy Bat, have a Beer Pong tournament, and race each other in Flip Cup. Just be sure to monitor everyone’s drinking so nobody gets sick or feels pressured to drink too much. Beer Olympics is a great way to forget about life inside the office and just enjoy each other as people, rather than co-workers.
4. Have a Cook-Off
A culinary team building activity is a great way to have fun and bring your employees together. It requires a whole lot less physical stamina and a lot more eating! You can either divvy up your employees into teams or have them compete as individuals. You can pick any food category you fancy— whether it be a classic chili cook-cook off or a more refreshing ice cream sundae competition. You can even pick one ingredient that each dish must use. It can be as basic or as wacky as you like! Once everyone has finished up, let everyone have a taste and vote. Naturally, the person or team with the most votes wins, and they can have all the bragging rights until the next cook-off.