The primary focus of the 2017 October Business Month is ‘enterprise innovation’. Innovation in business is critical to the development of new economic opportunities particularly in the NT where businesses are predominately small to medium size enterprises.
A growing trend emerging worldwide is the Corporate Retreat, often taking place in a natural environment far removed from the day to day operations of the office or workplace. Research has proven these ‘retreats’ to be highly beneficial in helping form new company objectives and goals. Taking your team away on a retreat can help them to gain a better perspective of the company by focusing on the ‘bigger picture’ rather than the day to day work of the business.
The informality of a company retreat allows employees to get to know their co workers better in a relaxed environment, create stronger working relationships and communicate on a deeper level. This team bonding can lead to fresh input and new ideas, or ‘inspiration’, enhanced productivity and a greater appreciation for colleagues and the company’s goals.
An off shore retreat could be called ‘innovative’ but it also has the added benefit of giving team members a chance to revitalize their mental and physical health, general wellbeing and reduce stress.
Pondok Cocoa Learning Retreat, a 10 minute drive north of Ubud in Bali, is one such retreat destination for those business leaders considering the idea of taking their staff on an innovation and inspiration focused few days away from their business. PCLR is an exciting new purpose built facility providing 10 spacious rooms, each with an ensuite and varying bed configurations which can accommodate 20 to 25 people.
The rooms are centered around a beautiful in-ground pool, surrounded by lush gardens with a 60 sq metre open ‘Learning Pavilion’ at one end for team building discussions , lectures, guest speakers or activities that could include traditional Balinese cooking, yoga, health and wellbeing exercises, culture or language.
The location in Bali provides a naturally cool environment. The Retreat has been designed to avoid the use of air conditioning by optimising the orientation of the buildings on the land. The use of ceiling fans and cool flooring provide natural cooling for each space. However, also available on site is a second Learning Room which is fan cooled and air conditioned, with beverage making facilities and a large flat screen for presentations. Free high speed Wifi is available on site.
Two spa rooms accommodate massage tables, with a team of local masseuses available on a freelance basis. The property also has a number of quiet areas for team members to focus their thoughts when not participating in group activities.
Cooked breakfast is provided in the dining pavilion and unlimited fresh drinking water is available to all guests. Additional meals can be provided by arrangement. All food is prepared using fresh local ingredients. All Pondok Cocoa Retreat staff live in the area and are very proud of their long association with the owners Peter McMillan and Heather Brown of Darwin.
Vania Primmer is a retreat facilitator already using Pondok Cocoa with her corporate clients. Vania has created all-inclusive custom retreats for corporate teams.
Her focus is to stimulate sales, workplace innovation and boost team morale. Her retreats deliver workshops, guest speakers, nutritious fresh food, with mind and movement activities to encourage inspiration.
Focusing on the word ‘Learning’ Retreat, Sandy Moorhouse brought a group of her Fashion Marketing students from Singapore to Pondok Cocoa on a study tour. Sandy’s tour included visits to a large jewellery manufacturer, a high end fashion designer and retailer, batik artist and fabric wholesaler.
Sandy commented “Bali’s entrepreneurial fashion businesses were an eye opener for my graduates and many were inspired to look beyond Singapore for career opportunities”. The study tour was a unique new learning experience for Sandy’s students and all enjoyed the exceptional hospitality and organisation of the Pondok Cocoa staff.
The natural peaceful setting of Pondok Cocoa, down a quiet laneway, within a walled compound is the perfect environment for such a retreat, with the added benefit of being a short 10 minute drive, or 40 minute walk, from the centre of Ubud and its wonderful restaurants, shops, jazz bars and galleries.
Perhaps when the events of October Business Month have concluded you may feel inspired to bring your team to Pondok Cocoa Retreat and experience first-hand what the rest of the corporate world is discovering – that company retreats do, indeed, lead to creative workplace thinking, innovation, team building and the creation of new economic opportunities for both your business and the Northern Territory.
Words: Ann George. Photos: David George.
CONTACT Heather Brown 0411 474 763 or firstname.lastname@example.org Peter McMillan 0411 641 853 or email@example.com