A Strategy Day Carol


There are so many things we’ve missed about team off-sites (our colleagues karaoke efforts not included) but there are three things in particular that our teams will be craving going into the holidays. Let’s call them ghosts of Strategy Days Past, Present and Future if it’ll help you feel festive…

Reset: The Ghost of Strategy Days Past

The first ghost shows us everything we’ve been through since the last strategy day or off-site. It’s exhausting just watching it back and yet we’re watching a year without global travel and barely a trip into the office. We’re seeing our ‘home office’ transition from a desk in the corner to something where we can actually do our job (with a few interruptions from the cat/dog/family member of course). We’re seeing the long months of lockdowns, lots of streaming and not much loo roll. We’re seeing families having family time together again.

Needless to say, this year has been challenging. Where it leaves us is in need of a hard reset (you know the one, it’s that tiny hole on the back of the device that nothing you own is small enough to fit in.) Not just a reset for the world, but for ourselves. Can we move past the challenge, the difficulty, the furlough, the lockdowns and (with the greatest restraint not to say ‘new normal’) embrace what’s ahead of us? Most of us are ready to get back to a world of workplaces, trips and flights. But whether we check in the baggage of 2020 is up to us. We can leave it behind and fly. That’s the power of a reset.

Refocus: The Ghost of Strategy Days Present

The second ghost shows us what we’re currently doing. It looks like hard work, busting a gut to get to the holidays or just dragging ourselves back to the bedroom desk we’ve set up. It isn’t clear why. Barely any of the goals and targets that were set at strategy days a year ago are still relevant. They weren’t properly adjusted. Despite the lockdown learning that wellbeing should trump our work and that family matters more, we’re almost at burnout getting the last work of the year squared away.

If we’re not careful, we’ll lose the valuable learnings that lockdown offered us. The focus on our health. The focus on our families. The focus on how our colleagues are really doing. We can get big results if we’re willing to shift our attention back to what really matters.

Reimagine: The Ghost of Strategy Days Future)

You see yourself, but something’s different. Maybe it’s the beard looking longer or our hair being a different colour. We look happy. That’s a whole new way of working we can see. We’re working hard, but this time it’s strategic work towards clear goals. Is that a PlayStation 6? We’re seeing ourselves, but about five years from now. We watch ourselves as we bring up a note on our iPhone XXV. It’s titled ‘The Five-year Plan: Strategy Days 2021’. We’ve achieved even more than we even set out to achieve.

Looking at our role, purpose, behaviours or goals in new ways can dramatically change the outcome. What if things didn’t have to be like they are now? What if you could reimagine your role to maximise your potential? It might not be in our work. It could be reimagining our role as a friend, a husband, or a mother that brings the future we want.

Still taken aback from the ghosts (well, this article) taking you on a journey to memories and futures, you return back to where you’re currently sat. Strategy Days 2021 are just the other side of the holidays. We’ll need them to reset the past, refocus on the present and reimagine the future.


Emily is co-hosing our next free-to-attend virtual workshop ‘Strategy Day Showcase’ on 12th and 18th January 2021. Register now to learn effective approaches to strategy days that refocus teams for 2021 and beyond.

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