F Your Staff Retreat

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F Your Staff Retreat

You’d think a day out of the office with catered food would be great, right? Wrong. The only thing worse than being at work are staff retreats. I would rather slam my head in a car door than go to this whine festival.

At least when I’m at work, I can do what I want – play Clash of Clans, daydream about winning the lottery, or do research for handicapping next year’s college football gambling season.

Instead, I have to sit in a room and pretend to pay attention for five and a half hours. I had a hard enough time paying attention in college while professor Dicknballs droned away about Social Bond Theory for 50 minutes. I didn’t graduate to sit through more lectures about the benefits of “team building,” “customer service” or “effective workplace communication.”

We had so much fun at least year’s staff retreat that they decided to make it twice a year.

What usually happens is they bring in some overpaid asshole with a skullet to pump up everyone and get the mojo going (or so he says). I don’t want to do team building exercises, introduce myself, talk about where I’m from, or a “fun fact that no one knows about me.” The only thing worse than this is watching everyone else eat up the shoveled shit this guy peddles using buzzwords like “workplace competency” and “T.EA.M.: Together Everyone Achieves More” to show how superior he is. If you’re so fucking great at motivating people, start your own company and run it your way?

I always sit under the ceiling fan in hopes that it will fall and kill me.

I wish I could call in sick, but it is definitely frowned upon to take a personal day on these wonderful testaments to wasteful spending. I honestly couldn’t tell you one thing that happened last year other than the omelet bar and waffle station were on point.

After we are all good and acquainted, in comes the SWOT analysis. For the uninitiated, that means we bust out good ol’ Mr. Dry Erase Board and write down what we think are the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats in the workplace. Skullet Man then gives an inspirational talk about how important it is to be aware of the internal and external factors that lead to the success of our bourgeoning work environment. This could be finished in ten minutes if it weren’t for many of the people talking about spurious garbage that doesn’t pertain to anything. Instead, this process takes at least an hour.

From here, the session devolves into an all-out complaint-filled bitching gala. You would think these people are going to war every day with how mistreated they claim to be. Everything is discussed from passive-aggressive comments, to questions about who never refills the coffee, to how they feel unappreciated, abused, or whatever their menopause dictates that day. Newsflash: you don’t get credit for what you’re supposed to do.

The best part about this entire operation is knowing that Skullet Man is getting top dollar to come in and ask questions that a simple Google search on “how to do a staff retreat” could do. Pay me to do it for a third of the price, because once he’s gone, there is no feedback, information, or anything of any substance provided on how to actually accomplish any of the aforementioned “buzz words” he littered in his long-winded opening chat. I feel like I’m taking crazy pills.

At the end of the day, it’s really not that big a deal. My group of workers usually makes fun of the nutcases that bitch and complain all day, because they are normal and well-adjusted. I can see my bosses rolling their eyes as the crazies spout off long-winded diatribes of neglect and mistreatment. The entire process of staff retreats are a huge waste of time that could be spent actually doing work. I know I have to go to put on the façade of “workplace solidarity,” but why? There is nothing worse than people who complain just to hear their own voice. The people complaining are the same people that don’t know how to use Excel, attach files to an email, or write a survey. Days like these make me wish I pulled an Office Space and worked in construction.

Image via Shutterstock

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