The Retreat Report 2024

Jean Lizza
April 9, 2024

In February this year, the Worklogic team gathered for our annual work retreat in ‘sunny’ Surfers Paradise, Queensland. The work retreat is a rare opportunity for the entire Worklogic team to come together, share ideas and participate in team building exercises, all while enjoying the beautiful coastal surrounds.

The theme for this year’s retreat was ‘Wisdom’.  The Worklogic team are jam-packed full of knowledge and experience that can be shared and the retreat is a great opportunity for all to put our ideas on the table.

Day 1

We arrived to some fairly typical Queensland weather of humid, light rain. We decided that rain wasn’t going to dampen our experience (ha!) and we gathered in the courtyard area of the Hilton, Surfers Paradise.

We met with Indigenous Elder Uncle John Graham who is an icon of these parts and community leader. John welcomed us to the Yugambeh region and lead a discussion on how we can work as a company and as individuals to foster a deeper connection to the land. He impressed on us the importance of building relationships with the indigenous community and to maintaining our curiosity about the land we inhabit.

Thanks to the team at Yugambeh Region Aboriginal Corporation Alliance (YRACA) for connecting us with such an engaging, passionate and knowledgeable member of the community.

The light rain continued unabated as we moved onto our next planned activity- a sand castle building challenge! Decked out in rain coats, facilitator Adam Fahey introduced us to the world of professional sand castle art known as ‘Sandology’. We are divided in teams and are instructed by ‘Sandologist’ Steve, who has spent the best part of 25 years honing his skills in the art of sand castles.

We were provided with some tools which included a water bucket, butter knife and brush for fine dusting. It was incredible the effects that could be achieved with a few simple tips from the expert Steve, who was on hand for any advice as we worked on our creations.

To keep with our retreat theme of Wisdom, Steve had pre-prepared an owl masterpiece and the goal for the teams was to create our own artwork based on the theme. Some very interesting interpretations of the theme were created including a very elaborate building of some kind with irrigation system (was it a library?) but the winner’s medals were awarded to the team who created an intricate Tree of Knowledge sand castle, which was beautiful detailed and just the right amount of whimsey.

Thank you to Adam and Steve from Be Challenged – a company that specialises in corporate team building and games. They made the whole afternoon a lot of fun, despite the endless rain.

At the end of a long first day of travel and activities, the team earnt our pre-dinner drinks at Catch Restaurant at the Hilton, followed by a hearty dinner.

Day 2

We started the day in the well-equipped conference rooms at the Hilton. Principal Consultant & Practice Leader Simon Thorne lead a fun ice breaker where we all previously provided a fact about lives that people may not know and in groups we tried to match the fact with the person. A lot of fun revelations were revealed including car racing experience and ball room dancing!

Worklogic director Jason Clark then took us through an update about how we faired over the year, what trends we are seeing with the work coming in and what we anticipate for the future. Transparency is an important aspect to what we do and it clues in the staff to how the business works. The staff are given an opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback.

Our Director Jodie Fox, lead an interesting discussion about Positive Duty Action Plans – what does it mean and how can we identify risks within our own organisation. Jodie opened the discussion up about how we can be aware of risks and what we can do proactively to maintain a safe work environment.

For the second part of the day, we enjoyed an excursion to beautiful Burleigh Heads to the Jellurgal Aboriginal Cultural Centre for a guided indigenous walk through the coastal bushland. We met our guide Jade who started the tour by showing us a video about the great work that the centre does. The film featured a familiar face- Indigenous Elder Uncle John Graham who welcomed us to Queensland on our first day of the retreat!

Through the rain, Jade took us for a trek along the coast, the home of the Kombumerri Aboriginal people, where he showed us the clay used for ceremonious painting on bark, rock faces and body painting.

As we passed the bush turkeys and a myriad of rainforest plant species, Jade told us stories about the area and pointed out where the whales migrate during birthing season. It was fantastic to get away from ‘the big smoke’ and connect with the unique Queensland coast. Thank you for Jade and the team at Jellurgal for such a great experience.

We returned to the hotel and some of us enjoyed a dip in the hotel pool, while others went for a swim in the ocean, which was as warm as a bath!

Day 3

After breakfast, we gathered for a final session lead by Practice Leaders Angela Seach and Melanie Roberts who led a discussion around reflecting on last year’s retreat theme- collaboration. We discussed what makes good collaboration and identified areas where we can work better, together.

Another successful retreat, done and dusted! Thankyou to our waiter from Catch restaurant Myo and Hilton Sales and Events Coordinator Phebe Mills who ensured our stay was a pleasant one.

All businesses and managers to make time for staff wellbeing. Even if a retreat isn’t on the cards, a well-organised pizza party or afternoon tea can be so beneficial to team culture and shows your staff that they are appreciated and cared for.

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