Corporate Camping Retreat: 6 Business-Boosting Benefits

Corporate camping

In today’s fast-paced corporate world, the traditional boundaries of office life have blurred, and businesses are constantly seeking innovative ways to motivate, unite, and develop their teams. One such solution that has seen a resurgence in popularity, especially post pandemic, is the corporate camping retreat. This isn’t just about toasting marshmallows and singing campfire songs; it’s a strategic move with tangible benefits for businesses.

This is especially true for companies with offices in different cities or even different countries. Corporate retreats are an excellent way to turn an unknown name with a title into a face and an ally. Remote workforces can also get some much-needed facetime with their colleagues, many of whom they’ve only seen on ZOOM calls, which helps reduce the feeling of isolation. 

At The Farmstead at Mill Spring, we’ve hosted numerous corporate retreats and witnessed first-hand the transformative power they can offer. Here, we delve into six business-boosting benefits of a corporate camping retreat. 

1. Corporate Camping Retreats Foster Team Building and Unity and Builds Trust.

According to a study by ClearCompany, 97% of employees believe that a lack of alignment within a team directly impacts the outcome of a task or project. Camping retreats, by their very nature, involve group activities and require collaboration and communication. Teams learn to rely on each other, highlight individual strengths, and navigate challenges together. 

Multi ethnic group of friends dressed in sweaters celebrating with bengal fire standing together at the camping during the evening light

Take Google, for example, who often employs offsite retreats to foster creativity and teamwork. Their employees not only come back rejuvenated but also with a stronger sense of belonging and togetherness. In 2022, they took a group of employees to a dude ranch in Tomales, California to refresh and reset, while performing the wrangling duties of a real, working cattle ranch. 

2. Camping Retreats Encourage Creativity and Innovation.

Escaping the confines of the office can spark creativity in employees. The change in environment, away from the constant buzz of phones and emails, allows for uninterrupted brainstorming sessions. Impromptu meetings are easy to arrange, and the relaxed setting is the perfect palette on which to paint new ideas. A study by the University of Utah found that people scored 50% higher on a creativity test after spending four days in nature, disconnected from electronic devices. 

3. Corporate Camping Improves Employee Well-Being.

The World Health Organization has identified stress as the “health epidemic of the 21st century. Corporate camping retreats, especially those that immerse attendees in nature, provide a therapeutic environment. Nature, as highlighted in a Harvard study, can reduce feelings of stress and increase overall happiness. After all, being in nature is physically and psychologically better for us than being in artificial spaces. Being outdoors can boost immunity, reduce mental fatigue, improve sleep, and lighten someone’s mood naturally. 

Corporate camping

4. Camping Retreats Enhance Problem-Solving Skills.

The outdoors is unpredictable. Whether it’s setting up a tent, cooking a meal, or navigating a hike, teams will face numerous challenges. These scenarios teach teams to approach problems with a fresh perspective, a skill that translates effectively back into the office environment. Plus, camping retreats get employees out of their comfort zone and can be a whole new experience that builds confidence. But keep in mind people’s tolerance, desire, and ability to “rough it.” A camping resort with individual accommodations or glamping opportunities is probably better suited for all.

5. Corporate Retreats Boost Employee Morale and Retention.

Feeling valued is a significant driver for employee retention. By investing in an experience like a camping retreat, especially for experientially minded Millennial staffers, companies show employees they are serious about their personal and professional development. A Gallup poll indicates that businesses with a strong company culture see a 4x increase in revenue growth. Because low morale can lead to a more negative work environment, corporate retreats allow companies to show a tangible, physical expression of gratitude for their hard working teams. 

6. Camping Retreats Can Actually Save You Money.

You might think a corporate retreat, especially if it involves travel and lodging, doesn’t make fiscal sense, but it more than does. Even if you’re spending a thousand dollars per person, you’ll still be saving money from your retreat throughout the year. 

Teams can organize their strategies, meeting time, and planning sessions around annual corporate retreats. It’s also more cost efficient to book travel arrangements all at once, rather than secure last-minute flights to catch a meeting to meet with remote team members. Likewise, the location you choose might also offer block rates for rooms or cabins. Finally, as we mentioned above, it’s much more expensive to replace an employee than it is to retain one. 

Corporate camping

Now That You Know All The Benefits, Here Are Some Tips For Hosting A Successful Camping Retreat.

Set clear objectives. Understand what you want to achieve – whether it’s team building, brainstorming, or skills development. Align those objectives with everything from location to downtime to structured activities. Trivia, talent shows, custom goody bags, outdoor activities, and mixing and mingling all play a key role in what your employees come away with from a retreat.

Choose the right location. Not all camping sites are created equal. A location like The Farmstead provides the perfect blend of natural beauty and modern amenities to ensure your retreat is both productive and enjoyable. Located near idyllic Lake Lure and breathtaking Chimney Rock in Mill Spring, North Carolina, Farmstead at Mill Spring can accommodate groups up to 50 people, and arrange for special team-building activities, live music, catering, and more. 

Incorporate a mix of activities. Whether it’s zip-lining, horseback riding, water skiing, hiking a state park, or taking a boat ride, downtime excursions are every bit as important as team challenges to the success of your retreat. This allows employees to bond both formally and informally. 

Corporate camping

Limit digital distractions.  Encourage employees to switch off their devices and immerse themselves fully in the experience. This will also give them the excuse to trust their out-of-office replies and set expectations for when calls and emails will be returned, which eliminates the pressure to feel they must constantly be checking their phones. 

Solicit feedback.  Post-retreat, gather feedback to understand what worked and where improvements can be made for future retreats. Equally important, find out what personal growth your employees experience and how they plan to apply that to their 9-to-5 duties.

Follow-up: Ensure that the ideas and skills learned at the camping retreat are integrated into your company’s daily operations. Did you discover that you have a very talented pool of team members? Maybe karaoke night at a local venue once a quarter keeps that spirit alive. 

Corporate Camping Also Has Marketing Value.

When we think about energizing an employee base, few companies do it better than Apple. They not only bring employees together who might not otherwise rub elbows, but they use retreats to launch breakthrough products and technologies. 

This concept applies to any company. Corporate retreats are the perfect place to get employees excited again, and achieve full buy-in on the positive direction your company trajectory is on.

By making an investment in your team’s well-being, creativity, and unity, you’ll be rewarded with enhanced productivity and retention. 

Leverage The Manifold Advantages of the Great Outdoors for Your Next Corporate Retreat. 
If you’re looking for the ideal location for your retreat, The Farmstead awaits you. Without state-of-the-art facilities set amidst pristine nature that’s in easy reach to both Lake Lure and Chimney Rock, we promise an experience your team will fondly remember for years to come. Your bottom line will benefit, too. 

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