Company Retreats in Lincoln, NE – 2019
As a company that is wholeheartedly behind the idea of company retreats, this was an easy topic for us to talk about. Plus, we know some pretty awesome businesses in Lincoln who can assist on this front.
Our team works hard, but we like to play every now and then! Yes, we are “strictly business,” but business doesn’t mean not having any fun. A team that has fun together is also able to buckle down and do the hard work that needs to get done together.
The importance of spending time with your office team outside of the workplace is immeasurable. Not only do these types of outings give employers a chance to show appreciation to their staff and add value to the job itself, but they are also an opportunity for teams to bond and grow stronger together. The main purpose of team building is to improve interpersonal relations among coworkers, both for their own personal well-being and for the productivity of the company they work for. When we talked to Amy Holland over at Corky Canvas, she agreed with us!
After hosting multiple team bonding event, Amy has seen the benefits of this type of experience firsthand. These benefits include cohesiveness among colleagues and departments, and better communication skills within your department and/or among multiple departments.
“Company retreats are important for so many reasons,” Amy confirmed. “They are a way to remove your team from the day-to-day nitty-gritty and create another environment to learn from one another! Working in such proximity is great, but learning new things about each other is even better! Company outings are a way to shed new light on each person and create a memory, one that was had together. It will be talked about and reminisced, creating laughter and conversation that isn’t necessarily about work! It strengthens bonds and will strengthen the ability to work together and ultimately produce together, a true sense of team.”
When looking into doing a company retreat and getting ideas for them, Amy’s advice would be to find something completely new and different—something that will take you far from what a normal day looks like! Corky Canvas is a place that does just that.
“Breaking away from routine is such an awesome way to create memories and bond as a team!” exclaimed Amy. “With that, look for spaces with private venues and tailored environments. For example, we rent you the space and you can choose the painting your team does. You are also able to bring in snacks and food to enhance the experience. We give step by step instructions to make sure it is a carefree event. A little wine helps too (wink wink).”
Team building at Corky Canvas starts at $420 for up to 12 people and they can hold up to 45 people! With a glass of wine in one hand, a paintbrush in the other, and the music rock’n, a company retreat at Corky Canvas has some good times in store for you and your team.
Another hot spot in Lincoln for some good team bonding is Capital Cigar Lounge. Especially in the summer now that their outdoor patio is open, Capital Cigar offers a great atmosphere to relax and unwind after being cooped up in the office all day. It’s a great place to enjoy a cigar or a cocktail in a classy and comfortable public lounge area. Even if there are people in your office who don’t partake in the cigar lifestyle, Capital Cigar will still be an enjoyable destination for them. With a state-of-the-art ventilation system, the air in the lounge is completely filtered out every five minutes. Plus, at Capital Cigar, they are focused on clean air outside of the lounge as well. So not only do patrons get the best-ventilated indoor cigar lounge in Nebraska, but Capital Cigar uses HEPA filters to clean the air before it leaves the lounge. This is an environmentally-friendly measure that anyone can appreciate.
“Company retreats allow teams to find commonalities with one another and build camaraderie,” noted Austin Hillis, co-owner of Capital Cigar Lounge. “Ultimately, this strengthens trust and allows for teams to perform at an elevated level. We hope companies choose to use our lounge as a platform for this type of team building. Capital Cigar was crafted to create conversation. Without conversations, we cannot learn more about each other and build bonds. In my mind, that is the fundamental goal of company retreats. We are unique as a venue because our guests have the ability to enjoy a cigar while socializing in our lounge, whether that’s over a game of pool or in between presentations in our private conference room.”
Austin doesn’t just talk the talk when it comes to the importance of company retreats, he has made them a part of his business structure. If you go into the lounge, you’ll notice how the Capital Cigar team—from the humidor attendants to the bar staff—all work together like a well-oiled machine. This is because they have spent time together outside of the lounge, making memories and building long-lasting relationships. One of the places they’ve enjoyed doing some team bonding at was Graduate Lincoln.
Last year, Graduate Lincoln installed Topgolf Swing Suites on their main floor, right by the hotel’s restaurant and bar, John J’s Chow Hall. With Full Swing golf simulator technology in each bay, guests are able to play against each other in multiple interactive spots, including dodge ball, baseball, carnival games, and, of course, golf. The bays also offer seating and guests are welcome to order food and drinks from friendly wait staff that walk around and take orders. Located right in the heart downtown Lincoln, the hotel is conveniently located in walking distances to your favorite bars! So your team can go out for more drinks after enjoying some friendly competition with each other at Graduate Lincoln.
With that in mind, every team is different. Only you truly know the dynamic of your office and how the individuals who make up your company will enjoy certain activities. If you have some competitive personalities on your team, bowling might also be a good fit (the real-life kind)! “Bowling is going to keep you engaged the entire time, even when it’s not your turn to bowl,” said Brian Kleinknecht with Sun Valley Lanes. “You’ll be able to enjoy food, drinks, and socializing with others in between the fun of actually bowling. From games like Battle on the Lanes, Rocky Road Race, and You Tunes, your corporate party is sure to be a fun time for everyone. We also offer a wide array of non-traditional bowling games.”
Sun Valley Lanes group packages include two hours of unlimited bowling, shoe and ball rental, and unlimited fountain drinks. The Spare Package is $17.95–$25.95 per person and includes two slices of Giovanni’s Pizza, a breadstick, house salad, and dessert. The Strike Package is $22.95–$29.95 per person and comes with a buffet, filled with your choice of two entrees, four appetizers or side items, and one dessert.
Sun Valley Lanes can customize an event to fit your needs and your budget for groups of 10 up to 384!
We also talked to our good friend Gary Tharnish with Burton & Tyrrell’s Flowers about his advice for company retreats. He was excited to tell us about a few recent groups he’s hosted at his shop for his Friends & Flowers workshop. “I’ve had such a fun time with office parties coming in for my workshop,” Gary shared. “Offices usually have a blend of different people and personalities—it’s not a group of like-minded BFFs on an outing together—so it’s really neat to see these people spend time together and, better yet, bond! The great thing about crafting together is the chance for everyone to let their own personality shine through their creation or, in this case, flower arrangement.” Gary has been arranging flowers for 40 years. He will teach you everyday tips for arranging and decorating. So not only will your team enjoy an interactive activity, you’ll all be enriching your lives with a new skill.
For bigger companies in need of a larger venue, the Talon Room downtown is an ideal location. With square footage that can accommodate as many as 300 people for a stand-up event and up to 250 people for a sit-down event, Talon Room offers a versatile space.
“As a special perk, the Talon Room is now offering catering, which means that we can provide all of the food at events,” Matthew Rogge, owner of the Talon Room, announced. “We also have our own liquor license, so groups have the option to have a full service bar at their event. Talon Room does off-site catering as well, so we can bring the party to you!”
Weather is something to keep in mind when brainstorming ideas for company retreats. Jennifer Davis-Korn with 48 Bowl, Inc. advises people to find an activity that everyone can participate in at a place that won’t get rained out. That is what makes bowling such a great option! 48 Bowl, Inc. centers, Parkway Lanes and Hollywood Bowl, offer two multi-use venues.
“Besides the lanes, we have meeting rooms to handle your breakout group activities and food and beverage service on-site,” Jennifer noted. “We have rates for groups large and small and can work within your budget to provide your group what it needs to make the day a success. We are happy to host casual open bowling for your employees or help you set up a tournament for some team building. We always recommend that you inquire about reservation dates as far in advance as possible so that we can secure the day and time you want.”
Aside from taking weather into consideration, transportation is another factor that plays a big role in planning activities for groups. If the destination for your company retreat is outside of Lincoln or maybe even outside of the state, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to take multiple vehicles. Even if you’re a small company, there are other options besides squeezing into a vehicle. In fact, RENT-A-VAN offers a variety of van sizes to meet your needs, specializing in short-term rentals for churches, schools, teams, businesses, organizations, events, family, and personal use. Their low mileage vans are well-maintained and thoroughly inspected before each rental to ensure a safe, reliable, and enjoyable ride. RENT-A-VAN, locally owned and operated by Amos and Paula Davis, is committed to providing exceptional service, a smooth rental process, and a guaranteed reservation every time.
So, if the vibe in your office is getting a bit stiff, it’s probably time to take a little break and mix up the workday with a fun outing that your whole team can enjoy. Employers will find that installing company retreats once a month can actually increase productivity and even reduce turnover! All work and no play is not a good strategy—let the creativity soar, let the drinks pour, and let the good times roll!