Crowley Webb Retreat Recap – You Wish You Worked Here

Some people hear the phrase “company retreat” and react like they just heard nails on a chalkboard. Boring company updates, crappy food, and uncomfortable chairs, right? Wrong. Not at Crowley Webb, at least.

Last Friday we had our annual company retreat, and it was just plain awesome. I started here in late December, so this was my first retreat. And I have to say, they set the bar pretty damn high.

After eating breakfast, but before the day’s events really kicked off, game show music suddenly filled the room and creative supervisor Liz Mattingly hit the stage with a microphone and a mysterious brown paper bag. Crowley Webb Trivia began. You see, we’re celebrating our 30th anniversary this year (more to come on this), so Liz had 30 questions about company history. If you answered correctly, you got to dive into that brown paper bag and blindly grab one of 30 crisp bills. I’m talking about cold, hard cash.

Following some company updates, we started our team-building activity. We were split into five teams and tasked with completing up to 70 random acts of kindness. We had two hours to finish the challenge, and the team with the most points at the end won serious bragging rights. And bragging rights for something like this are important to us, because giving back is at the core of Crowley Webb’s culture, so we don’t play around when we have the chance to do it. Check out our Facebook album for some fun pictures from this activity.

We’re a pretty competitive group, so the people of Buffalo saw a lot of kindness that day, and we really represented our City of Good Neighbors sobriquet. Jimmy Crowley bought someone a taco from Lloyd Taco Trucks, Matt Low donated blood, a dozen of us called our moms just to say “I love you,” we helped at least 20 people cross the street, we filled a half dozen cars with gas, washed windshields, and offered countless laughs to random passersby. WIVB actually caught up with us as we were cleaning up Delaware Park Golf Course.

After lunch, it was time for the newbies to hit the stage. Each year, it’s a tradition at the Crowley Webb Retreat to have everyone who was hired within the last 12 months perform in front of the rest of the company. This year, we had 14 new people (a record!). We were split into two teams of seven and tasked with competing against each other in a cheer competition. Think Bring It On. We had to include a role call and everything.

The retreat ended with a happy hour at one of Buffalo’s oldest, most-revered watering holes, Ulrich’s Tavern. It was a great way to end the day.

So what’s the moral of the story? I left that retreat feeling energized and excited about my company and all the people who make it up. I felt a true sense of satisfaction and pride in the culture. And that goes a long way in affecting the work we do here every day at Crowley Webb. Isn’t that the point of a company retreat, after all?

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