Why We Hosted Our First Company Retreat After 10 Years?

Written by on Jan 17 2017

Last weekend we hosted our first company retreat for both LessFilms and LessEverything. It was a casual gathering of 10 of the 13 people involved daily in LessEverything.

Let’s start with the why.

Why did we host a company retreat?

I do not believe in term “company culture”, I think it should be called “The Company’s Attitude”. Attitude flows down from the top, the owners of the company. I want our employees to know we care about them, their skills, their family, and hobbies. I find each one of our team members very interesting as people, they’re human, not inventory to sell. They’re all extremely smart people who we’ve hand picked to build this thing we call LessEverything. Our coworkers are smart, funny and interesting; I want to know what they think about movies, hobbies and life.


For me a company retreat gives me time to understand each person further, what they love and how they feel appreciated. Knowing this gives me the ability to make sure our company delivers back the value they want in a work life.

Our retreat was casual, there was no agenda just hanging out. I took several walks and looked for opportunities to hangout one on one with them. It was low stress, lots of laughs and I think everyone has a relaxing, fun time together.

Things I learned during the retreat.

  • Stubby is an incredible singer, he bought a guitar and after enough drinks he started playing and singing. I’m blown away and jealous of his talent.
  • Michael cooked ribs one night, BBQ is a hobby of Michael’s. The ribs were A+, tender but not chewy and not mushy.
  • Ford has been playing the violin for over 20 years. He put on a concert which made me feel super fancy…something about wine and violins makes me feel fancy. Ford enjoyed the High West Whiskey we brought which leads him to rant about colonialism. #fordrant
  • Jordan enjoyed the tequilla A LOT but didn’t enjoy the hangover as much. Also per Adam, who is British, Jordan has the best British accent in the company.
  • Adam, who eats a “mostly plant based diet” (vegan), was unswayed by my bacon advances. Next time Adam!
  • James is claustrophobic, don’t ask me how I know.
  • Chet had a college roommate who used to wet his bed.
  • Eric gives the best back scratches.

I generally feel closer to our team members, because I know them better. I hope they feel the same way about me.

*But make no mistake, a “retreat” will not fix your company nor make you more profitable. *


Our retreat was from Friday 2pm until Sunday at 11am, short and sweet. We choose St. George Island because I know the area, it’s quiet and beautiful. Plus it’s the offseason so rental rates are lower than normal. It was also an easy drive for most of the team.

We did hire a personal chef to be there, Dan Magner, who I’ve known for years did a killer job as the chef. If you’re bringing someone into your retreat like a chef, be sure they’ll fit well with the group. Dan felt like apart of the team, he was kind and funny.

Conclusion Q&A

  • Is a company retreat a must for all companies? No we didn’t host one for 10 years.
  • Will a company retreat make everyone “happy”? No, it depends are you a good dinner party host?
  • Will we host another retreat? Yes I think so, I don’t know when but eventually we probably will.

Hi I'm Allan,

I wrote the article you're reading... I'm one of the co-founders of LessEverything. I love my family more than breathing and I love creating videos about our family adventures.

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