Valentines Day Retreat with Pablove

Screen Shot 2013-02-15 at 5.59.20 AM It’s not everyday you get to facilitate a team building retreat on Valentines Day with an organization that has “LOVE” in their name. That’s exactly what I did recently with the Pablove Foundation, an fantastic organization “fighting childhood cancer with love”. Some highlights for me:

Relationship Building: Like the retreat I led last year for the LA Neighborhood Land Trust, the number of folks on the Pablove staff has grown quickly. We spent quality time giving staff the opportunity to get to know each other better.

Three of my favorite activities included:

Screen Shot 2013-03-07 at 7.16.55 AMMapping Migrations: We did a fun exercise where we mapped where everyone was born, where they currently live and the migrations they made in between. We held our retreat at one of my favorite places to retreat in Los Angeles, the Audubon Center at Debs Park so the migration theme fit in well.

Iprov: Post-lunch, we gathered in a circle and did some fun, engaging improv exercises. These generated a lot of laughter and some really good discussion. We did a couple of variations of the “Yes, and” improve, a engaging activity that generated an interconnected story and good ideas.

Screen Shot 2013-03-07 at 7.18.15 AMSocial Styles: We went through an exercise where I had each staff member take some time to fill out an assessment of their social style which charts out their communication styles. As a group, each staff member shared their style and we had an informative discussion. I paired up folks with similar styles along with folks with different styles and we had a really engaging debrief conversation. Part of this discussion occured in pairs on a beautiful walk on a nearby trail.

Screen Shot 2013-03-07 at 7.17.43 AMAltogether, the retreat rocked! As we gathered in a circle at the end as the sun was setting, folks shared how the retreat helped connect everyone in a meaningful way. It was like everyone was giving each other a Valentines day gift, and it felt great both to give and receive.

About Ron Milam

I work to build the capacity of organizations and collaborative change initiatives in Southern California through facilitation, training and coaching. I specialize in the areas of organization development, collaboration, strategic planning, team building, board development and fundraising. Since 2005, I have served over 145 organizations.
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