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How To Do More With Less- Offsites as a Performance Driver

People professionals need to bring their teams together for intentional and outcome-driven offsites with an eye for budget AND building a high-performance culture.

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Jan 17, 2024
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Last updated on Jan 26, 2023

We have all heard it now time and time again. The economy is and will continue to slow into 2023. Being proactive with a game plan to present to your CFO will help you stay in front of getting key resources. Some of you may have already experienced a riff or might be preparing for another one, driving performance and execution out of the lean team will be extremely important. 

So, how can you do this with a tight budget and maintain high-performance culture remotely or hybrid? Bring your team together for intentional and outcome-driven offsites. At Gatho we help companies set the budget at the beginning of the year and maximize the number of in-person gatherings based on location, employee distribution, and purpose.

Location arbitrage ( save 40% by traveling off-peak and mid-week)

The largest factor in the cost of getting your team together will be the location you chose to go to. Instead of trying to figure out where to go every time, take the time to create a hub and spoke model for in-person gatherings. Center your gatherings in a few major US cities and rotate your meetings through those cities. At Gatho, we call these our cloud neighborhoods. Our software will analyze a variety of inputs and create a hub for a business that allows for regional meet-ups and larger group gatherings.  The trick here is to travel in the off-season and mid-week. If your organization has this flexibility, you can save over 40% on accommodation and flights which represents roughly 80% of your offsite budget. 

For example in Miami, if you travel during the winter months rooms can cost 300-500/night however if you come in the summer, you can stay at a 5 star resort for 200/night and have access to built in activities. 

Business-driven gatherings (performance attribution)

Typically an offsite will cost $2,500/person (all-inclusive). CFO’s will look at this number as a one-time cost and it will get tagged to travel & entertainment/employee experience. It is your job as a people leader to ensure this investment is appropriately attributed to business performance/the core priorities of the organization. For example, an SKO costs roughly $2500/person (2 nights 3 days) to do this in person. A study published in the Journal of Management Development found that face-to-face training was significantly more effective at improving job performance and learning outcomes compared to virtual training. The study found that participants in the face-to-face training group demonstrated a greater increase in job performance and learning outcomes compared to the virtual training group.

If you close one more deal because the team gained a deeper understanding of your product and the ability to see each other sell together-its worth it. 

Similarly, if you hold an OKR goal setting offsite, your team comes away with more clarity and confidence in the organization's most important task and how to achieve them-its worth it.

Anchor your in-person strategy to clear business goals and objectives and you will be able to easily qualify your budget. At Gatho we are working with select organizations to develop a unique approach to track and drive business performance with both in-person and virtual gatherings.

Offsite meetings can be a valuable tool for maintaining a high-performance culture while working on a tight budget. By using a hub and spoke model and traveling during off-peak and mid-week times, organizations can save on costs while still benefiting from the improved performance and learning outcomes that come from face-to-face interactions. Anchoring these in-person strategies to clear business goals and objectives will help justify the budget and ensure that the investment is worthwhile.

Please contact us if you would like to learn how we are helping organizations streamline their costs and drive their in person connection programs.

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