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Thursday, July 02, 2009

Strategic Planning Retreat? Don't Skip This Year's!

This Year's Management Off Site: Necessary or Negligent?

That's the title of a new article from Harvard Business Publishing, which offers up the pros and cons of scheduling the "annual planning retreat" during times of economic uncertainty.

The pros?

• Hunkering down is not a strategy.
• Management alignment is critical and at risk.
• Creativity is more important than ever.
• Pure ROI

The cons?

• Managers are talking more than ever now.
• It wouldn't be prudent to spend money on a hotel, food and facilitator.
• It sends a bad message to those still on-site.

BOTTOMLINE: The authors suggest the following:

"I would not advocate postponing or skipping your strategic planning session. Strategy is as important if not more important than ever. They are meaningful events. Successful off sites build employee loyalty and camaraderie. When I think back on my positive business experiences, they cluster around positive team interactions happening during off site sessions. Also, much greater work happens when employees are unencumbered by both in-the-business and personal obligations."

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