Contributed to EO by Ashley Luck, an EO SLP member of the Edmonton chapter, One Canada Committee member, and the founder and principal of AMP Business Solutions.
As you start researching ideas for your annual Forum retreat, how great would it sound to be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the event instead of worrying over the (seemingly endless!) details?
Are you interested in renting a ranch in Montana and spending time outdoors? What about special ops training in Scottsdale? Or a private villa in Costa Rica, purpose-built for Forum retreats?
An executive retreat planner can handle everything from accommodations, flights, activities, itineraries — even sourcing facilitators. Plus they have access to exclusive experiences and perks not typically available to the general public.
Here are six reasons to consider hiring a retreat planner for your next corporate or Forum retreat:
1. Tap into expertise
Retreat planners have the experience and knowledge to create a tailored retreat that meets your group’s needs and goals. They can help you set clear goals for your retreat—whether it’s team building, brainstorming new ideas, or simply having fun, they will be there every step of the way to ensure your retreat is successful.
2. Save time and effort
Planning a retreat is time-consuming but hiring a retreat planner allows you to focus on other important tasks while they handle the details. Retreat planners know the best restaurants and accommodations and where to find unique, tailored activities that will wow your group. Save your time and energy—let your planner mastermind the process.
3. Inject some creativity
Retreat planners bring a fresh perspective and innovative ideas to the planning process, ensuring that your retreat is original and memorable. They can include activities that everyone will enjoy—because while it’s important to focus on goals, it’s also important to ensure everyone has a great time.
4. Save on costs
Did you know that hiring a professional retreat planner can save both time and money in the long run? Planning a retreat is a big effort; if you’re not familiar with the process, it can be easy to overlook important details. A professional retreat planner has the knowledge and resources to get things done efficiently and cost-effectively. They can negotiate with vendors to get you the best rates, handle logistics, and take care of all the details, so you can focus on enjoying your retreat. Hiring a retreat planner may be less expensive than you think: Most work at an hourly rate, so you can use them as little or as much as needed.
5. Enjoy stress-free planning and execution
Planning a retreat can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be! A professional retreat planner can handle all the details, from location scouting to registration and transportation. They can also handle any issues that arise during the retreat, so you can focus on connecting with your group.
6. Customize your retreat
Every retreat is unique, and a professional can help customize and personalize your retreat to meet your group’s specific needs and preferences. They will work with you to understand your goals, interests, and preferences and create a retreat experience that reflects your group’s personality. They can also help tailor activities, workshops and sessions to meet your group’s needs and achieve your goals.
Convinced that a retreat planner can help make your next Forum retreat an epic event? Here are three locations to consider:
- Whistler, British Columbia. A two-hour drive from Vancouver International Airport, Whistler is a charming four-season town with hiking, biking, skiing, and many other adrenaline-pumping activities. Whistler also boasts one of the hottest culinary scenes in Canada. Top that off with world-class accommodations ranging from high-end hotels to beautiful log cabins; it offers something for every group!
- Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Cabo has become a retreat favorite with plentiful beaches, world-class golf courses, and restaurants offering rustic, farm-to-table dining. Only a short flight from many Western US states and Canada, Cabo is easy to get to and offers everything from relaxing spa days to adrenaline-pumping activities.
- Toronto, Ontario. Enjoy the city’s plentiful sports offerings, parasailing and kite surfing on one of its beaches, or riding bikes through its many alleys and historical neighborhoods. Finish your event with a hidden speakeasy tour or enjoy the culinary offerings Toronto’s many neighborhoods offer. Toronto is a world-class, multicultural city that must be seen and experienced to be appreciated!
Or, if you’re really into adventure, there is always that special ops training in Scottsdale …
Hiring a professional retreat planner can be a smart investment for anyone looking to create a memorable and successful retreat experience. With their expertise, experience, and resources, they can help you plan a customized and personalized retreat that meets your goals and objectives while saving you time, money and stress. So, when planning your annual Forum retreat, consider hiring a professional retreat planner to help make it shine!
Ashley Luck is an EO SLP member of the Edmonton chapter, One Canada Committee member, and the founder and principal of AMP Business Solutions. She has more than 15 years of marketing, events management and administrative experience spanning the hospitality, legal, professional services and construction sectors. With her passion for travel, Ashley now focuses on planning and executing corporate, executive, chapter, and Forum retreats across the globe. Ashley has a flair for curating unique experiences and works with clients to create once-in-a-lifetime retreat experiences. Based in Edmonton, Alberta, she enjoys traveling, spin, dancing, laughing, and spending time with her son and husband.