Annual Team Meeting in the Trees

Author: Jade Shelton
Published: 28th January 2020

We have quite a structured way of running Proposito. It’s based on the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) outlined in the book Traction by Gino Wickman. Let us know if you’d like a look at a copy as we have a few spares.

At the core of the EOS are three types of meetings: a weekly, a quarterly and an annual.

The weekly meetings are for solving operational issues, making sure we all know what’s going on and what has to get done this week. If you’ve ever tried calling us between 9.30 and 11.00 on a Monday morning you’ll know were usually not available. We’re in the weekly meeting getting ready for the day to day demands of the week ahead.

Each quarter we spend a day off site (usually the third Monday in April, July and October) to remind ourselves of the company’s goals, solve outstanding strategic issues and work out what needs to be done in the next quarter to move Proposito forward towards our goals. We remind ourselves of our 10 year vision, 3 year picture and 1 year plan. This ensures that everyone gets back on the same page. Things drift over time and it’s good to press the reset button. The quarterly meeting is our chance to reflect on progress and set goals for the next 90 days.

That leaves the annual meeting, which is two days in January. The purpose of this meeting is to completely re-build Proposito’s plan. We do this from scratch, starting with a blank piece of paper. This is really valuable as it’s our opportunity to reflect on what we’ve achieved, where we’re going and why. If we need to change things we can.

As we enjoyed last year so much, we decided to head back to The Forest and spent two nights in a cabin in between the trees. We spent each day strategising for the year ahead and spent the evenings enjoying delicious food, laughing and playing board games (UNO). We also took advantage of being in the woodlands and decided to do some walking, relishing in the fresh air and getting in plenty of steps. Jade and Sarah even got a bit lost whilst trekking in the forest and ended up walking through (what felt like) dangerous terrain. It was all part of the fun, but they were very relieved when they FINALLY found the right cabin (this was hard to do as they all look the same!).

You’d probably already guessed as a planning firm (with Planning in our company name) that we’d do our own planning. It’s too easy to forget where you’re going when you’ve been embroiled in ‘work’ for a number of weeks, so we take time out to remind ourselves.

This is not too different to financial planning. Each year we meet to refine the plan and see if we need to change direction, take advantage of new opportunities or keep going. It’s too easy to forget where you’re heading (and why) when your life is so busy. This is where the real value of planning is to be found.