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How to Create an Annual Team Offsite Agenda

By Julie L. Genjac

Annual team offsite meetings take time and effort. Are they worth it? Absolutely.

Julie L. Genjac
Julie is a Managing Director of Strategic Markets for Hartford Funds. She works with financial advisors in a practice management capacity, including engaging and educating advisors and their clients about current and emerging opportunities in the financial- services marketplace. She is a registered corporate coach and has spent the last two decades helping hundreds of financial advisor teams create a vision for their practice and serving as their accountability partner in order to execute on that vision.

When was the last time you felt like your team wasn’t operating under the same set of goals and priorities? Did you feel like you’re simply reacting to fire drills each day, as opposed to thinking strategically? Your team may not understand what the key objectives and goals are for the upcoming year, and may think that they’re best serving the practice and clients by simply reacting to daily challenges and requests.

Consider an Annual Offsite Team Meeting, in which you gather your entire team (advisors, staff, and any key strategic partners or virtual team members) outside the office for a half-day of strategic business planning. This is an opportunity for each team member to be heard, express ideas, frustrations, challenges, and, most importantly, for the team to set clear measurable and monitorable goals.


Each Team Member Will Understand What He/She Is Being Held Accountable for, and Will Know What Success Looks Like

The offsite is also an opportunity to celebrate successes that have happened throughout the year and to thank your team for their contributions. End the offsite meeting with a group meal or an activity that fosters relationships within your team, such as volunteering in your community. Be creative, be appreciative, but most importantly, be a great team! You’ll find that your team is energized, on the same page, and better connect with each other as a result of this annual meeting.


One of the most dangerous words a team can use is the word “WE”

This little word may seems safe enough, but it is impossible to hold “we” accountable. Reflect on the last time your team said “we should do this....or we need to do that....”. It is probably an ingrained part of your team vernacular, because it feels collaborative. Make 2020 the year of abolishing WE from your team vocabulary. Make sure that specific team members have been identified as the driver of goals and initiatives. This will help you consistently go from concept to execution.

Reflect on the list of topics below. Consider the possibility of gathering your team (advisors and staff), annually at an offsite location, to reflect, discuss, prioritize and set goals. Depending on your own team’s lifecycle, some topics may be more timely than others. This is merely a place to start. We look forward to helping you build your own customized Annual Team Offsite Agenda.


Annual Team Offsite Meeting Themes:


Team Culture, Harmony and Communication.

  • Is there a positive dynamic on your team?
  • Does each team member feel valued, and able to freely
    express ideas, frustration and personal updates?
  • What communication challenges do you face, given the current
    composition of your team?
  • Does your team regularly meet to discuss the business?

Business Growth Drivers for Next Year.

  • How do you plan to elevate your client experience next year?
  • What one thing can your team implement that would “feel” different to your clients?
  • Is it time for a team investment implementation review, given market performance and general investment landscape?
  • What marketing initiatives are you committed to executing next year? 
  • Can each member of your team articulate your value proposition and describe your brand?

Career Succession and Business Transition.

  • What is the professional development opportunities are available or encouraged for each member of your team?
  • Are there various career paths available for members of your team as they grow as people and professionals?
  • What legacy do you want to leave behind as it pertains to your practice?
  • Is there a business succession plan and timeline formally in place for your practice?

Goal Setting and Accountability.

  • Is there a date on the team calendar for your next Team offsite meeting – to reflect on last year and plan for next year?
  • Does your team have written, measurable and monitor-able goals for next year in place?
  • Are all team members committed to executing on the team’s top priorities going forward?
  • Do you have a coach or consultant who will hold your team accountable to goals and metrics next year?