I believe strongly in the value of communication to, and among, the partner (ownership) group. The minute you drop the communication ball among the partners, small issues turn into big problems. Often politics and gossip expand and then, worst of all, the firm stands still.
The biggest value of a retreat is for the participants to talk. Talk openly and honestly. Doesn’t matter if it is a partner-only retreat or a full management retreat (partners and managers), communication reigns.
Although, I strongly recommend that you hold your retreat earlier in the year (May/June), many firms still prefer to have them later in the fall. Perhaps, you are planning your retreat for after October 15. Bottom line, better later in the year than never.
Don’t end up like one partner described their retreat to me: “We should just video it and the next year give everyone a copy to watch and save the time and expense. We talk about the same things year after year and never do anything.”
“When you become a partner, you give up the right to remain silent. As a partner, you must speak up at THE meeting (the partner meeting) – not nod your head and then go door-to-door after the meeting talking to the other partners. Not speaking up, in the proper forum, creates artificial harmony.” – - Sam Allred, Upstream Academy