Shooting Australia’s most recent strategy session was more than a year in the making. And for general manager of commercial and marketing Sarah Brady, it was worth the wait.
Eighteen staff from across Australia flew into Adelaide for the meeting, “from the CEO to HR and accounts”. Getting everyone together in the same room allowed the team to develop a new strategic plan around the 2024 Paris Olympic Games but it was just one of many outcomes. “In our organisation, people work on a range of different tasks,” says Brady. “So the main thing we got out of that session was a shared vision.
“Being able to go for a stroll and have a chat before we started meant that everyone was relaxed and worked well together. It created a collaborative environment in which people felt more confident voicing their opinions, especially those who might not speak up online. Ultimately, we had more innovative ideas and more clarity on what we were doing.”
The sports body uses points earned through Qantas Business Rewards to help offset travel costs and, says Brady, Qantas’s Fly Flexible program (offering unlimited fee-free date changes until 28 February 2022 for bookings made by 31 July 2021) has also given them the confidence to book more in-person meetings.³ “Being able to easily change flights gives us the peace of mind to book ahead and organise our calendars so that everyone can attend.
“When you have a head office in one place, the people elsewhere can feel a bit left out. But spending more time together has already had a really positive effect on morale.”
The recent face-to-face interactions will make remote meetings more productive, too. “If you need to have a difficult conversation, it’s so much easier to pick up the phone when you’ve spent time with that person. Moving forward, the camaraderie we’ve developed will help us to be a tighter team.”