At Lighter Capital, we understand that a strong, cohesive team is at the heart of our success. Every year, our semiannual company offsite provides us with a golden opportunity to come together, learn, share, and create lasting memories as colleagues. This year's three-day adventure was an exceptional blend of work and play, and it's time to revisit the highlights that made it truly remarkable.
A Spiritual Awakening at the Brookdale Lodge
Our offsite began with many twists and turns, driving through the Santa Cruz Mountains to our final destination: the historic Brookdale Lodge. Nestled amidst nature's beauty, the lodge carries a reputation—it's reportedly haunted! Our stay here sparked inquisitive discussions that transcended our usual work banter and piqued curiosity that can only be described as otherworldly.
Days of Enrichment and Innovation
The core of our offsite was two days of deep engagement in content discussions and hack-a-thons. We split into five groups that tackled different enhancements to our products and services in alignment with our company mission—helping entrepreneurs realize their dreams, on their terms.
Group 1: This team took on the challenge of streamlining our internal processes to achieve greater efficiency as a business and to improve our customers’ experiences.
Group 2: This intrepid group set out to revolutionize our business process with Generative AI, such as ChatGPT, AI chatbots, and more.
Group 3: Putting on our clients’ shoes, this group brainstormed strategies for scaling the business and reaching more founders who can benefit from non-dilutive funding.
Group 4: Acknowledging the unique challenges of remote work culture, this team discussed ways to strengthen bonds, trust, and camaraderie—in between our in-person meet-ups.
Group 5: The final group had the important task of making it even easier to apply, qualify, get funding, and grow!
Discovering Our Superpowers
One of the most exciting aspects of our offsite was discovering our "superpowers." Each team member was given a colleague they don’t work with directly and asked to uncover their coworker’s unique strengths. Unveiled over the course of the offsite, we learned the remarkable, diverse talents that make our team seem so much larger than life!
Individual superpowers included: "Superwoman," "Cucumber," and several uber-hyphenated descriptions such as, "Inked Encyclo-Code Whisperer." It was a delightful way to celebrate the extraordinary qualities that each person brings to Lighter Capital.
Fun and Games
It wouldn’t be a Lighter Capital offsite without plenty of activities to balance out the hard work. While a few of us were hoping for the next Lighter Capital Ironman (Unofficial), we enjoyed friendly, creative competition and simply spending quality time together in and around the Brookdale Lodge.
Friendly Competition: Giant Jenga, cornhole, shuffleboard with a bit of a slant, and a variety of billiards games—we’re confident our collective hand-eye coordination is well above average after this offsite and our abs got a good workout from all the laughs.
Creative Exploration: Our visit to Byington Vineyards included group painting and wine blending competitions, which let us unleash the artists within us while savoring delicious, fermented fruits.
Nature's Wonders: We explored the Santa Cruz boardwalk and embarked on a breathtaking hike in the Redwoods, forging connections with both nature and each other.
Time Travel: Dressed in vibrant '80s attire for a 'rocking' '80s murder mystery dinner, we transported back in time to figure out whodunit. Everyone was a suspect including Rick Astley, Dougie Howser, and the singer from Toto!
Star Performances: We celebrated our shared love of music with a DJ-hosted night of karaoke—our favorite way to end every offsite. We dressed in Western attire, sang a few more country songs than usual, and thoroughly entertained each other with a showcase of our musical talents.
More than just a break from the daily grind, Lighter Capital’s biannual company offsites nurture our relationships, inspire innovation, and create memories that fuel our journeys ahead.
Perhaps there were supernatural forces at play at the Brookdale Lodge; regardless, the Lighter team spirit was palpable and we’re happy to be back at work, transforming our collaborative offsite ideas into outcomes that have impact.
Here's to many more successful offsites and an even brighter future!