Happy Cog Takes the Catskills: Our 2023 Company Retreat

Happy Cog made their way to beautiful Upstate New York to enjoy three days at AutoCamp Catskills.

Last year, Happy Cog’s 2022 Company Retreat was a massive triumph, bringing everyone together and providing unforgettable memories. It looked like a tough one to top, but the Happy Cog 2023 Retreat had a couple of tricks up its sleeve to live up to its predecessor. This year, our Happy Coggers made their way to beautiful Upstate New York to enjoy three days at AutoCamp Catskills, and it proved to be the perfect backdrop for building solidarity and fellowship that will extend all the way to next year’s expedition.

I was able to meet a lot of people who joined Happy Cog since the last retreat and even a few people I didn't cross paths with last year. Not only did it make me feel closer to my immediate team, but I also feel that I got to know the rest of the group much better which will help my collaboration with them on future projects.
– A Happy Cogger

Stu, one of the partners of Happy Cog, kicked off the retreat with a rousing speech looking back on the success of last year’s retreat and sharing his hopes for what this year’s gathering could bring. He shared responses employees submitted after last year’s retreat, expressing gratitude for the people they work alongside and joy for the time they spent together. Needless to say, each attendee was eager to dive into the retreat’s itinerary and seize the day. The schedule included a number of staples for any type of crowd, be it competitive, adventurous, or introspective. It even threw a few curveballs that defy categorization. One of those surprises was a spontaneous murder mystery featuring local actors. Wild twists and turns led to inimitable moments that put everyone into a killer mood.

For those who wanted to test their wits against the stiff competition that was their own colleagues, Corporate Feud provided the perfect stage. The attendees were split into teams to compete in a quick-trigger game of trivia, complete with a host and champion’s medal. Smarts never felt so good.

Every meal, the company came together to share food and conversation in a relaxed, picturesque environment. Team members who worked remotely throughout the year finally enjoyed some in-person interaction alongside each other. These moments between colleagues underline the fundamental objective that the Happy Cog Retreat sets out to achieve: create a foundation upon which personal and professional relationships can flourish.

It was so much fun interacting with people I normally don't work with everyday. For each event I was with different groups, so that allowed me to get to really know many different team members, who I now consider friends.
– A Happy Cogger

One of the finer things to appreciate at a Happy Cog retreat is the opportunity for decompression amongst the peaceful setting. The nightly campfires gave ample inspiration for Happy Coggers to share insights with each other, find common ground, and build camaraderie that can be leaned on in the future. A sizable number of S’mores certainly raised spirits.

I felt like it was the perfect length of time to be able to get some 1-on-1 time to get to know just about everyone at Happy Cog. I also felt like everything was very well structured and organized, and the activities were awesome! Lastly, just the people at the company - every single person who works at Happy Cog - is so nice and we have such an amazing group of people!
– A Happy Cogger

Inside, active card games and board games could be spotted all throughout the weekend. Brows were furrowed, drinks spilled, and temporary loyalties tested. What better way to get to know your coworkers than to gain bragging rights over them you can use all year?

On the other hand, it can be pleasant to admire your surroundings without distraction. The numerous forest trails offered the best excuse possible for wandering off on your own with no destination in mind, while yoga, meditation, and mindfulness groups were hosted around Autocamp to help attendees find their center. Discovering the perfect photo op for that exotic piece of nature was its own little victory.

Getting to spend time with coworkers is always the best thing for me. It almost doesn't matter where or what we're doing.
– A Happy Cogger

During the final evening, those who chose to participate in Paint ‘n Sip were encouraged to stoke their creative side. The goal: to recreate a serene nighttime landscape, with assistance from some helpful local artists (and some liquid courage). Some Happy Cog creations ended up closer to the reference painting than others, but every participant took home a treasured souvenir in the end.

As we learned in 2022, there’s no better way to conclude a Happy Cog Retreat than a raucous outing of karaoke, and raucous it was. The Catskills were shaking with each belted ballad, and there was no shortage of enthusiastic singers ready to bring the house down one more time.

The 2023 adventures in the Catskills proved once again that spending quality time with your colleagues is an important facet of a healthy and ambitious company. Communication and productivity soars when the team environment has earned trust and respect. Our time in Upstate New York may have been short, but the echoes of our celebration can be seen all throughout the year in the work that is accomplished by the Happy Cog Team.

This blog was crafted by Erinn Holman, a valued SEO Content Specialist here at Happy Cog.