Summer retreat!

This summer we are offering Schools the opportunity to participate in a focused 2-day leadership retreat for Administrative Teams, Board of Trustees…or both together so that we are all working in synergy. This personalized retreat will be grounded in team assessment programs, leadership analysis plus a major topic of the School’s choice. Gowan Group will host a virtual Pre-Meeting, a follow-up report and a social media connection to bring all attendees together and focused throughout the retreat and beyond.


A summer retreat will serve as a foundation for administrative teambuilding and leadership analysis with built-in opportunities to enhance skills and guide discussions on one or more of the following areas:

1) Team Assessment (every retreat will include this)

2) Strategic Planning

3) Self-Study Preparation

4) Admissions

5) Advancement

6) Marketing towards Recruitment and Retention

7) Other: Determined by hiring School


+ What Is It?

A dynamic and motivating 2-day retreat focused on team assessment and another major topic of choice. As a team we will take a deep dive into leadership styles, motivations for success, and team synergy. We will also prepare each team for a year ahead focused on a topic of choice: strategic planning, governance, self-study preparation, marketing, school culture shift, or uniting as a new team with new members.

Gowan Group will host a virtual pre-meeting with each team and ours to layout the goals and design of the retreat. In addition, a follow-up report will memorialize the retreat as well as give a comprehensive summary with recommendations.

+ Who Should Attend?

It’s your choice! Some suggestions are the School’s entire Administrative team or a selection of your choice pertaining to the focus of the retreat. It could be a board of trustees, the Admissions team, or the Board of Trustees AND the Administrative team. Our retreats are also excellent opportunities for a new Head of School to start off on the right track.

+ How/Where Does It Happen?

Gowan Group will lead the planning phase with direct input from the school. We will do all of the planning. We offer three separate location packages based on a School’s budget and specific needs:

  1. Off campus at a resort destination
  2. Off campus at a local conference site
  3. On campus

+ When Does It Happen?

Two options: June/July/August or any weekend in January for a mid-year planning session.

+ How Much Does It Cost?

The cost to the School depends on the location of the retreat. Gowan Group’s services, which are separate from the logistical and location costs, are $5000 for the entire retreat. Included: thoughtful planning, execution of a 2-day retreat with three Gowan Group facilitators, all digital strategy and follow-up.

+ Why Is It Important?

Leadership assessment helps Heads of School, Board Chairs and their teams better understand each other’s personality traits and interpersonal preferences. Increased emotional intelligence is the basis for developing more effective team strategies and positive morale, which leads to remarkable outcomes. This one retreat will reenergize and unify a team; it will prepare your team for the year ahead, and it will assess, analyze and improve your School’s leadership team.


Sample Retreat Schedule (using an admissions focus as an example)

5PM – 8PM   Arrive at destination and get settled in, potential cocktail/dinner/opening remarks welcome event                                                            

 Day 1

8AM                            Breakfast

9-10:30AM                 “Making Good Teams Great”

10:30 – 11:00AM       Break

11:00 – 12:30PM       “Assessment & Interpersonal Skills”

12:30 – 1:00PM         Lunch

1:00 – 2:30                 Afternoon Recreational Break

2:30 – 4:00PM           “Using Data to Boost Recruitment and Retention”

4:00 – 4:15PM           Break

4:15 – 5:15PM           Examining Our Own Practice 

(How we apply what we’ve learned to our personal work back at school)

5:30 – 6:30PM           Cocktails

6:30 – 7:30PM           Dinner

7:30 – 8:30PM           “Building a Strategic Word-of-Mouth Program” (optional)


Day 2

8AM                           Breakfast

9-10:30AM                “Effective Team Building”

10:30 – 11:00AM      Break

11:00 – 12:30PM      “Emotional Intelligence: How to Figure Out What People Want”

12:30 – 1:00PM        Lunch

1:00 – 2:30                Afternoon Recreational Break

2:30 – 4:00PM          “Discovering and Defining Your School’s Value”

4:00 – 4:15PM          Break

4:15 – 5:15PM          Examining Our Own Practice 

(How we apply what we’ve learned to our personal work back at school)                                                  

5:30 – 6:30PM          Cocktails

6:30 – 7:30PM          Dinner


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President & Founder

As a life-long educator, strategist and thought leader, Chris Pryor is in his third decade of independent school leadership. A skilled communicator and visionary practitioner, Chris has led schools through strategic and long-range plans, marketing and image projects, programmatic paradigm shifts, enrollment challenges and community divides. Chris is a well-known speaker on topics such as social media, marketing, admissions training, crisis management, professional development and board training. He is a talented storyteller.


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Managing Director

As a passionate people person and born leader, Dr. Allison Agliata has spent her career focused on working with individuals, teams, and organizations to improve their interpersonal dynamics, harness their productivity, and develop a positive corporate culture.  Allison's work focuses on connectivity, emotional intelligence and assertive communication to strengthen professional relationships.  Her goal is to create more effective teams, which promotes a sense of community, improves office morale, increases revenue, and spills over to better people skills for a more satisfying life.  


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