What Should Be the Theme of a Company Retreat?


The theme of a company retreat is the pillar that you design around in order to maximize your ROI. Whether you choose to hone in on just one or incorporate many themes into your planning, it’s important to highlight a qualitative goal. This is how you make sure you get the most out of your company retreat. 

It is easy to get caught up in the moment and focus on the immediate results.

And you may see some immediate results from your retreat.

But it is also beneficial to set goals six months out that you can look back from to allow the benefits of your corporate retreat to grow exponentially.

The first thing to do is to make sure your team understands the point (i.e. the theme) of the retreat. No amount of planning can help you to please everyone during a company retreat. However, you can alleviate some of that by getting buy-in from your team. That way, they feel that they have more of a say in how the retreat goes.

Don’t forget, communication is a key element in any team environment and will likely come back to benefit you and your team well past the six-month goals of your retreat.

In this post, we’ll cover five core themes of company retreats:

  • Introspective
  • Reconciling
  • Project Post-Mortem
  • Forward-Looking
  • Training

Let’s get right to it!

An Introspective Retreat

Introspection isn’t just a tool to better the self, but one that can better an entire organization.

Sometimes the most beneficial thing you can do for your company is to use a retreat to step outside the walls of your company and reexamine who you are as a business, what the mission of your company is, and what you believe in as a company culture.

As an added bonus, a break in the day-to-day office routine can allow for new ideas to form and outside thinking to be utilized in a manner that helps the company progress as a whole.

An introspective retreat can help you to create or revise the mission or vision statements for your organization and embrace new perspectives as you allow your company to analyze and grow in the same manner as a living, breathing creature.

Choosing a secluded retreat venue is key here as getting your team away from distractions and routine will allow your company to return to the core of what it is and open new pathways to what your company can become over time.

Common topics of an Introspective Company Retreat:

  • What is the vision statement of the company?
  • What is the mission statement of the company?
  • What are our core values?
  • What values will we hire on?
  • What values will we fire on?

A Reconciling Retreat

No matter what, at some point, your company will encounter issues that will affect the team, workplace morale, and company culture in a highly negative manner.

There is little you can do to avoid it, but making use of a retreat to practice reconciliation is a step in the right direction. While a single retreat will not fix your problems overnight, it will allow you to highlight the issues and begin rectifying them.

This form of retreat is excellent at encouraging team building and communication in the workplace and is the perfect time to develop the framework for making communications a whole lot simpler with better channels and attitudes towards it.

Utilizing group outings and team building activities during a reconciling retreat is a great way to focus on building not only communication but patience, teamwork, and togetherness as well.

While you can only lay the groundwork at this kind of retreat, you can set a framework in place in order to improve the overall social health of your team and your company. This retreat is often just the start of a long term process, but it is an incredibly worthwhile one when it comes down to it.

A few inter-office issues that could be addressed at a “reconciling” themed retreat:

  • Interpersonal conflict
  • Communication problems within the workplace
  • Discrimination
  • GossipCompany Retreat participants sitting around campfire

A Retreat for a Project Post-Mortem

A workplace is more than just a social environment. A major part of the workplace is the actual work done by your company and the accompanying workload.

There are times after a major project is completed, employees can still feel mentally fatigued and burnt out.

A retreat is not only the perfect way to offer your team a breath of fresh air but a way to celebrate the completion of a project and what went well. You can also take advantage of the retreat and discuss what did not go as smoothly as would have been desired and come up with a way to avoid those hiccups in future projects.

Retreats of a post-mortem nature not only offers relief to exhausted workers at the end of a major project, but it opens the door to discuss whether or not your team felt overworked, underappreciated, or dissatisfied with their workload during the project’s timeline.

Stress is unavoidable in a workplace, but rewarding your employees with a chance to breathe and celebrate the boons of the project will likely make them more willing to weather the stress time and time again – especially if they feel their issues have been listened to and an attempt made to rectify them.

A few helpful tips to move the retreat in a positive direction:

  • Schedule the Post-Mortem meeting within two weeks of the “finish” date of the project
  • Give employees a questionnaire to allow them to express their feeling on the project
  • At closing, share the insight gained with the team

A Forward-Looking Retreat

The main point of a retreat is to set achievable goals for your company, and often times those goals can end up being a lot further out than you might initially assume.

Whether you want to establish goals for the next quarter or the next year, a retreat venue can grant you a place away from the office to focus and brainstorm. A retreat offers the perfect opportunity for open conversation to talk about future goals, discuss quarterly reviews, and create road maps for fiscal gain.

A successful retreat may even result in new avenues and goals for the company to pursue in the months and years to come.

If you find that you’re a bit overwhelmed with where to start setting goals, then consulting Gino Wickman’s “Traction” may be a beneficial place to start. The book will give you plenty of ideas on how to improve your company, and using the retreat to begin implementing the Entrepreneur Operating System concept will allow your company to slowly reap the benefits of thinking not just one quarter ahead, but years into the future.

A Training Retreat

If you’re using retreats in the most effective way, then your company is evolving constantly, and retreats can surely help make that process a whole lot easier!

A training oriented retreat is a perfect opportunity to do general sales training or roll out a brand new product.

Getting away from the offices not only reduces the danger of “zoning out” but it removes routines from the equation and creates the perfect opportunity to introduce new policies and practices to your employees.

When you choose to do training on a retreat you might find that your employees are more receptive and training oriented than they would be if you were training them in their normal office spaces.

Also, when planning your retreat, try and keep a classroom setting and larger conference room in mind when choosing a location as both can help your employees focus more on the information. You can also utilize “breakout rooms” for more focused and personalized training sessions if you desire.

You can even maximize the benefits of a training retreat by staging the room like a visual walkthrough or providing catering so that food and drink isn’t a distracting worry for your employees.


This post is part of our in-depth How to Plan a Corporate Retreat Guide, so be sure to check out that guide for even more information on planning your upcoming retreat!

Ready to book the location for your company retreat? Then contact us at Cliffview Resort today to get more details about our Eastern Kentucky mountain resort (and a no-obligation quote). Call us today at 844-596-3511.

Scroll to Top