The reality is they shouldn't be cheap. Depending on the retreat, you're getting personalized attention and a unique experience. For example, during the last business retreat I attended we were staying in a villa in Old San Juan with a private chef. We didn't have to worry about anything so we could focus on our businesses, so naturally it's going to cost some money.
Rather than gawking at the price tag of a business retreat, consider finding ways to make a return on your investment. Here are the ways I plan on doing this as I get back into the swing of things after attending a retreat.
Because business retreats tend to be more intimate, they are a great way to make some real connections with other people.
I love industry conferences as much as the next guy, but the bigger conferences get the harder it is to make new connections. In fact, I have recently found myself sticking to the people I already know when attending a conference I go to annually.
On the other hand, when I went on this business retreat the only other person I knew was the coach who was organizing it. I'd seen the other participants in a Facebook group here and there, but I never really interacted with them until the retreat.
During the retreat we got to know each other and help one another with our businesses. Now I know I not only have friends, but fellow business owners I can speak with whenever I'm having doubts or just need an extra pair of eyes to look over some copy. We even have a Facebook group chat going to root each other on as we implement what we learned over the next few weeks.
A word of caution, here. Don't attend these retreats with the intention of snagging clients. That's not really the point. Instead, focus on how you can provide value and make real authentic connections.
Actually get some work done.
You would think that spending a few days in an exotic location would make it nearly impossible to get some work done, but the opposite is actually true. At least, that was the case for me.
The reason I decided to go on this retreat in the first place was so that I could finally get a sales funnel together for a signature program where I'll be teaching students how to build an online platform for their thought leadership.
I had absolutely zero luck getting this done on my own because I didn't have the guidance or the time. I figured that if I made a big investment and forced myself to get on a plane that I would have no choice but to get it done, and that's exactly what happened.
This doesn't mean I didn't have a good time. I still went out salsa dancing and enjoyed my fair share of Sangria, but my primary intention was to get this funnel figured out.
Have a plan to execute when you get back.
The day after I got home I fired up my project management system and started delegating tasks to my team so we could get this sales funnel going as soon as possible. I figured out tasks, deadlines and starting implementing marketing efforts almost immediately.
The reason why I did all of this so quickly was because it was still fresh in mind. Aside from that, I want to see the financial return on my investment sooner rather than later.
Without a plan to execute, you'll basically just waste your money. And that's the last thing you want when you invested so much to begin with.
Bottom line: Retreats are worth the money.
The bottom line is this: If you actually do what you're supposed to do when attending business retreats, then you'll see a return on your investment. While I still have a few weeks of work ahead of me to implement everything I learned, I already see how incorporating some of the strategies is improving my marketing. If I follow through with everything, I'll start seeing more sales in no time.