Since switching to a fully remote work model in 2020, Xpedition has found meaningful ways to stay connected virtually, but one of our ongoing goals is to also facilitate in-person connection. To help accomplish this, we hosted our very first company retreat in January. We booked accommodations at a beachfront resort in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, so our team could come together for a fun, collaborative week in the sun. Here were some of our favorite moments:
Socializing with Other Xplorers
During the retreat, we put plenty of free time on the schedule so team members could attend sunset soirées, go to silent discos, or try crepes at the onsite dessert bar. These moments helped fuel our company culture and create deeper connections. “The people were easily the best part of the retreat,” says Ken, a Data Analyst on the Content Marketing team. “This was an amazing experience for me to meet and interact with people from different departments across the organization. Being able to learn that people are having children, are from tiny towns, or travel to remote villages for holiday really helps generate that human connection.”
“The best part of the retreat for me was definitely meeting the Xpedition team in person,” adds Jayne, an Associate Project Manager on the Experiential team. “It was really cool to put faces to names I’ve seen in emails.”
Celebrating Each Other & Our Company
Our leadership team shared insights about company milestones and objectives to ensure everyone understood our vision and felt connected to our growth, culture, and future. We also presented our first Annual Culture Awards to recipients who were voted by their peers as best representing Xpedition’s core values of humanity, gumption, courage, and connection. We made a donation to the World Wildlife Fund on behalf of each recipient and gave travel vouchers to help them explore more of the world on their time off.
“My favorite part of the retreat was the very thought out events and team-building sessions,” says Devone, a Producer/Editor on the Creative Content team. “I think it definitely helped a lot to connect with my peers. Nothing felt forced and the environment definitely assisted in making that connection.”
Participating in Brainstorming Sessions
Our team also participated in working sessions and presentations designed to help us better understand company goals around business growth, client pitches, and volunteer objectives. “Doing the presentations together really helped to understand pain points as well as see peoples’ personalities,” Jayne says. “I especially loved the group table exercise where we shared what we love.”
“The workshops provided insight into how other teams were structured and showcased how diverse we really were,” says Timothy, a Digital Manager on the Experiential team. “I was able to meet folks from other teams that I don't have regular contact with.”
Exploring Puerto Vallarta
Attendees could also choose to participate in local activities including a taco and tequila tasting tour and a river excursion. “I went on the river excursion and it had such a mix of different activities in it: Zip lining, suspension bridges, rock rappelling, lazy river tubing, and a donkey ride back to town. There was never a dull moment along the way!” says Timothy. “A small group of us saw a show in the city and it was an amazing time, and the excursions gave us a chance to connect with each other while doing something new and exciting.”
“I would, legitimately, travel to Nowhere, Wisconsin, for another retreat with these people,” says Ken.
March 21, 2023