YPO & EO European Adventures

Florence and Tuscany Villas for YPO and EO Forums

We’re now planning a European Adventure for a YPO Forum that will take us to Florence and Tuscany in a retreat focused on Art & Soul Discovery.

Our YPO and EO forums focus on travel discovery combined with a learning adventure. Florence, Birth of the Renaissance provides an ideal destination to explore a new city while discovering more about the power of creativity.

Michael Gelb’s book “How to think like Leonardo Vinci” serves as the backdrop for the Forum to discover a new city while learning more about themselves and each other.

7 Characteristics of Leonardo will be explored in this city of the senses:

  1. Curiosita (Curiosity)
  2. Dimonstratzone (Independent Thinking)
  3. Sfumato (Embrace Uncertainty)
  4. Arte/Scienza (Art and Science and Whole Brain Thinking
  5. Sensazione (Refine your senses)
  6. Corporalita (Mind, Body Care)
  7. Connessione (Interconnectedness)

The itinerary for Florence includes touring the city’s iconic Duomo and the Uffizi Gallery while exploring the sights and sounds of creativity. Experiential learning activities will focus on discovering a new city using daVinci principles. Group activities include:

-Fun, Food and a Ferrari Test Drive

-A Coffee tasting workshop

-A Wine and Culinary Adventure tapping into the Taste of Tuscany.

A private Villa serves as the location for the Forum, providing both privacy and unique accommodation. An onsite concierge frees up the Forum event planner to be fully present during the retreat experience.

Pre-work for the forum includes the Neethling Brain Instrument (NBI) assessment for each leader. Forbes Magazine has identified (NBI) as a key assessment tool for modern leadership. Results of NBI are shared during the Forum.

An important element of YPO and EO Forum Event Planning is the right balance between learning and crafting a travel adventure that will forever bond executives through shared experience.

For information and support in planning your YPO or EO Forum Retreat, visit http://ForumDestinations.com

When Bullying Blocks Innovation

Serving as Vice President of Education for a global anti-bullying organization the face of bullying is always been top of mind for me. From classroom to boardroom, bullies seek to use power and exercise dominance over others. Perhaps the only difference from school yards to work environments is bullying can be re-branded to the more acceptable description of being a tough boss. But do Tough Bosses get better results? Not according to recent studies on workplace culture. “Productivity may rise in the short term, but over time the performance of the staff or team deteriorates, and people quit.” Review this article in the New York Times.


When the CEO gains the reputation of a bully, innovation can be replaced by fear where ideas, opinions and criticisms are held in check to the detriment of the organization. Note: Bullying is not gender specific, though it is perceived that women are more likely to be called out on bullying behaviors.

The Prescription: Creative Problem Solving

This is one reason why Creative Problem Solving is such a key competency for today’s CEO’s in leadership education. http://www.creativeeducationfoundation.org/creative-problem-solving/

In the Forums we host for members of YPO (Young President’s Organization) and (EO) the (Entrepreneur’s Organization) creative problem solving is often the theme of Forum Retreats as well as increased self-awareness and a focus on empathy and relationship building. YPO and EO Retreats are ideal to learn and practice Creative Problem Solving or CPS. Each member of the YPO or EO Forum arrives with a personal or business challenge and leaves with the power of creative peer thinking and solution finding. Practical application is key. During the retreat, forum members are trained to facilitate the process back home with their own teams to foster corporate innovation. According to https://forumdestinations.com YPO and EO Forums frequently remark that learning the CPS process greatly enhanced their own organization’s innovation as well as the effectiveness of their Forums.

  • https://forumdestinations.com provides educational training and facilitation of YPO and EO Forum Retreats. The Firm also designs overall retreat agendas including experiential and fun learning adventures in unique retreat destinations.

Content is King at YPO and EO Forum Retreats

Deciding on the content that will be most valued by your Forum is key to planning an outstanding Retreat

Retreat Content and Learning:

As we work with YPO and EO Forum Members who are charged with planning Forum Retreats, we begin by exploring their BECAUSE. Why is the Forum hosting the retreat? There’s often a goal of spending quality time together to build the relationships within the forum. However, there should also be a deeper content or learning goal. It makes sense that Forum Executives want a value proposition and return on investment. Why am I spending 3-5 days away from my family and business in addition to the expense of the retreat? What is my BECAUSE?

To develop a content value proposition for your retreat, begin by examining the pain points and questions of your members. What are Forum members struggling with? What key decisions or problems could benefit from the group’s collective organism or expertise from an outside facilitator or executive coach. You will often find forum member struggles fall in the big buckets of Career, Family, Money or Health. There’s also area of skill development that can help with all of those buckets such as Creative Problem Solving, Relationship Building, Increased Self Awareness, Presentations and Influence.

Regardless of your content selection, be sure you can articulate clear learning objectives with immediate take home value.

Popular YPO and EO Forum Topics

While some content areas lend themselves to specific locations such as our Go Wild! Go Great Leadership Safaris hosted in Costa Rica and Find your Inner Viking in Iceland. Many topics are portable and can be hosted to at a number of our YPO and EO Forum destinations around the world. This gives retreat organizers the ability to select and customize both the destination and the learning content. https://forumdestinations.com

  • Go Wild! Go Great Leadership Safari
  • Play-Create-Succeed:
  • “Sankalpa” Achieving Personal Determination and Focus
  • Fail Fest: “Oops–what can we learn from that?”
  • YPO Hackathon: The Art of Speed Innovation
  • Whole Brain Relationships
  • Developing Your Personal Brand of Leadership
  • Creative Problem Solving and Storytelling Camp for YPO Families
  • MI6 Adventure–Release your inner Bond, Bourne and Bauer!
  • Find your Inner Viking–A YPO Adventure in Iceland
  • For the Health of It! A retreat in Whole Body Wellness

Personal Ah Ha’s from your YPO or EO Retreat

In addition to learning a new skill, forum members should have the opportunity to learn more about themselves. At https://forumdestinations.com we use a variety of assessment tools including Clifton’s Strength Finder https://www.gallupstrengthscenter.com/ and the Neethling Brain Instrument. These assessments are completed by members before the YPO/EO Retreat with results shared at the Forum. Additionally, an hour of executive coaching is offered to Forum Members following the retreat.

Customization & Facilitation

Finally, as you look at your learning content, look for a seasoned facilitator with not only experience in YPO and EO Forum Retreats but the ability to customize your retreat choreography. Each YPO and EO Forum is unique and the experience should be a customized choreography of place, space and content.

At https://forumdestinations.com our facilitators are vetted for not only content expertise but their ability to create an overall learning experience.

Forum Destinations specializes in planning and executing retreats for Executive Forums including YPO (The Young President’s Organization) and EO (Entrepreneur’s Organization). The Firm with offices in both North and South America works with Forum Moderators and Event Chairs in designing both the content and facilitation as well as selection of destinations for the retreat. Retreats are designed to accommodate learning preferences, travel and budget restrictions.

For support in planning your YPO or EO Retreat, write concierge@forumdestinations.com or visit forumdestinations.com

US Phone: 239-666-8054

This is Your Brain! YPO and EO Whole Brain Assessments

NBI®Whole Brain Assessment
NBI Whole Brain Assessments for YPO and EO Forums

A common goal of YPO and EO Forum Retreats is increased Self Awareness as well as achieving a deeper connection and trust among forum members. To achieve that goal, http://forumdestinations and  EO Travel Destinations completes individual and a group forum assessment. The assessment not only identifies individual thinking preferences but shows how the forum thinks and operates as a peer coaching unit. The assessment is recommended for Chief Executives by Forbes.

What is NBI?

NBI® The Neethling Brain Instrument developed by Dr Kobus Neethling http://www.kobusneethling.co.za/ in South Africa, provides insight into thinking preferences which impact relationships and success in both business and life. YPO and EO Forum members note their Ah-Ha moment of increased awareness of how they operate and communicate on a daily basis and how applying whole brain thinking to business and personal relationships, including customer communications increases their effectiveness.

The NBI ®assessment also evaluates group and team decision making as well as customer service and sales skills from a whole brain perspective. “We have had forum members immediately bring the NBI®assessment back to their teams. The Realization: diversity of thinking and communications is key to their team’s overall strength and effectiveness” notes the Forum Faculty. There is also increased awareness and understanding about our unconscious bias to work with individuals that think and act like we do”

NBI® Assessments are assigned as pre-work to YPO and EO Forum members before annual retreats, where a deep dive into whole brain thinking and creative problem solving provides immediate take-home tools for CEO’s to navigate the tsunamis of business and life.

NBI® is one of the top assessment tools recommended in a recent article by Forbes Magazine for CEO’s Forbes Assessment Tools.

To bring the NBI® Assessment tool to your YPO or EO Forum or Chapter contact concierge@forumdestinations.com  or visit  EO Travel Destinations and http://Forumdestinations.com

Favorite Destinations for YPO and EO Forum Retreats


Costa Rica offers exciting Adventures for YPO and EO Forums

We’re often asked what are our favorite destinations for hosting YPO and EO Forums. The answer depends on several factors including time and budget available for the retreat, bucket list destinations identified by forum members and the forum program itself (certain destinations lend themselves to specific programmatic focus) Forum Destinations hosts YPO and EO retreats around the world https://www.forumdestinations.com/regions.html

Some of our Favorite Retreat settings offer exciting destinations that compliment our three key ingredients for executive forum retreats: privacy, powerful learning and once in a lifetime experiences. While our Executive and Team retreats are hosted around the world, many of our more popular locations are hosted in North and Latin America. Our most popular destinations include Costa Rica, Mexico, Canada and the United States.

PS: Don’t forget your Forum Educational Program and itinerary! Your learning program is key and will be the frame for your entire retreat experience. Facilitators with experience and understanding of YPO and EO Forums is critical as well as content expertise that offers immediate take home value to forum members.

So where do you start?

  • Begin with the goals of your YPO or EO Retreat
  • Define possible retreat locations, budget and travel restrictions
  • Contact the staff at Forumdestinations.com to create an event plan with a few options for your forum to consider. Plans will include destinations, facilitators and experiential learning activities.
  • Allow an event planner to handle all logistics. As the Retreat Planner, your active participation in the retreat should be part of the plan.
  • Select the right facilitator experienced in YPO and EO Forums.

Help! I need support in planning our YPO or EO Retreat

We recommend you get started as soon as possible. Since we often look for unique retreat properties and private villas, early reservation is key not only for busy forum members but for planning of the program timeline and logistics.

Contact ForumDestinations at http://forumdestinations.com and receive your retreat plan with multiple retreat options within 48 hours of a quick connect with our team.

Email concierge@forumdestinations.com

How Do Successful Leaders Spell Survival?

Did you know that the same skills used in Survival Situations are the same skills needed for effective Leadership? The U.S. military uses the word SURVIVAL as a pneumonic device to help its troops and leaders remember right actions under fire. Today’s successful leaders and managers can follow the same principles for “Go Wild! Go GREAT!” Visionary Leadership. Here’s a Survival principle from our retreats hosted for CEO’s in YPO Forum Retreats and EO Forum Retreats.

S: Size up the situation.

Survivalists know that they need to survey their environment before taking action. Today’s Successful Leaders need to do the same. Unfortunately, I have seen too many newly promoted
managers, so anxious to prove their worth, begin immediately making changes before a careful business/organizational analysis. The result: A disruption of customers and employees and often negative consequences to the organization. Always conduct intel, before offering opinion or direction.

U: Undue haste makes waste:

A companion to the S in Survival with one additional rule pertaining to crisis situations. Did you know that an angry or emotional person’s I.Q. drops 50%? How many leaders can afford to lose that much brain power in their decision making? Rule of thumb: Never make a business decision while in an emotionally charged state and that includes addressing employees when you’re under
pressure or under fire.

R: Remember where you are:

Always check that your decisions and actions are in keeping with your organization’s mission statements, values and key business objectives. Ask yourself on a regular basis. “Is this the best use of my time to accomplish the overall organization mission and strategic objectives?” If the answer is no, re-think the task. It takes discipline for a leader to stay on point and not get lost in the jungle. Remember, the best way to get found in the wilderness is to focus on not getting lost in the first place. Vision and Clear Goals are key.

V: Vanquish fear and panic:

A running animal is a vulnerable animal. Do you know leaders and managers who run around the office making everyone crazy? Do they look like a leader who is cool and calm in a crisis? I think not. Here’s a simple communication rule to improve your leadership credibility rating. People who speak slower and wait 2 to 3 seconds to respond are considered much more credible. Use the
“Power of the Pause to your advantage”. If you find yourself cutting people off in mid-sentence or running around frenetically in response to pressure, both are warning signals to slow down and pause!

I: Improvise:

Are you Solution Oriented or Problem Focused? Today’s Successful leaders recognize they won’t always have the perfect world and so become quickly known as the McGuiver’s in their organization. The question is are you a Go-To or a Run- From Leader? A Go-To leader, presents a solution for every problem presented. A Run- From leader whines about their lack of resources. You be the judge of which category your organization would put you in.

V: Value living:

I have met the most brilliant people who are unfortunately poor managers because they know little about those around them who make things happen. If you value the life of your employees, they will value their partnership with you.

A: Act like the natives:

Recognize that empathy and finding common ground with customers, employees, colleagues and upper management are the key to your survival. Coming in like a tourist, telling the natives what you do in their country won’t win you points in any camp.

L: Learn something new—–Every day!

Today’s successful leader needs to be an information and learning machine. Stay up on best practices, new consumer trends, competitors and yes, even pop culture. Your adaptability to life’s ever-changing conditions is the key to your survival. Ever met someone who talks about the good old days? Chances are they’re not Leadership Survivors!

Forum Destinations provides support and content to YPO and EO Moderators and Event Chairs. Contact us at http://forumdestinations.com

YPO and EO Adventure: The Land Rover Expedition

At Forum destinations we’re always on the look-out for once in a lifetime experiential adventures that can be built into your YPO Forum Retreat or your EO Forum Retreat.

Here’s a 1/2 day adventure we are planning for an upcoming forum of executives who want to Get Behind The Wheel of a Land Rover.

Locations in the United States for Land Rover Experiences for YPO and EO Retreats are hosted in California, North Carolina and Vermont.

YPO & EO Land Rover Experience includes

  • Welcome
  • Your choice of Land Rover vehicle
  • Expert Instructor
  • Brief overview of vehicle technologies
  • Terrain covered: steep inclines, declines, mud and ruts, water crossings, rock crawl and various obstacles
  • Certificate of Completion

You can check out this Forum Retreat Experience at Land Rover USA.


Helpful Hints on Planning your YPO or EO Retreat

  • Know the top 3 goals for your Forum Retreat
  • Identify possible destinations (in keeping with your forum’s budget and travel limitations)
  • Identify learning themes. (Creativity, Innovation, Leadership, Relationships)
  • Mix It Up with Adventure – include at least 1 experience that will give your forum members something to write home about.
  • Use an outside facilitator (with experience with YPO and EO Forums) as well as having content expertise.
  • Create a detailed agenda. (Consider time commitment of 1/3 learning, 1/3 travel adventure and 1/3 social) as a guidepost.
  • Make sure you have on the ground support from either (an outside facilitator and/or meeting planner). If you are the Forum Retreat Organizer, you want to minimize your distractions and be present. That’s tough if you’re trying to do it alone.

Partner with a Pro

Did you know that there is a trusted partner who will work with you in planning and facilitating your YPO Forum Retreat or your EO Forum Retreat? Forum Destinations and EO Travel destinations is a trusted and independent event and facilitation firm specializing in YPO and EO Retreats. Sketch out your goals, possible destinations and budget and we’ll turnaround retreat proposals with our destinations around the world. Proposals include destinations, adventures and Ah Ha Learning for your YPO or EO Forum retreat.


Unique Team Adventures for Executive Forums (YPO and EO)

The Zombie Apocalypse Special Ops Experience

A key ingredient of our YPO and EO Forums often includes a unique experiential learning experience that our event team has curated. In this blog, we feature an adventure that is certain to bring your Forum to Life in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Take a Peak at the Zombie Apocalypse Experience here:

As it turns out both teams and leaders can learn to work together with the help of this special forces adventure based in Las Vegas Nevada where it’s your team against the zombies. The experience is part of a 3-4 day intensive forum retreat that focuses on Leadership, Relationships and Communications. Expert facilitators, familiar with the unique dynamic and functioning of YPO and EO Forums plan and execute the total retreat experience. You can also view http://ApocalypseVegas.com

According to the design team at Forum Destinations, YPO and EO Forum Moderators often have three goals for their retreat that includes:

-Connecting and deepening forum relationships

-Learning Something new with immediate take home value.

-A fun and unique experience

Planning and YPO Forum Retreat or EO Forum Retreat often places huge responsibility on the forum retreat planner who by the way has a day job of running a company. http://forumdestinations.com takes the pain out of planning and executing the retreat through a quick assessment of the retreat goals and member preferences for location, learning and budget. The team then presents two to 3 retreat options to the event chair to present to their forum.

In upcoming blogs, we will include other unique experiences and destinations for YPO Forums and EO Forums the will give your forum members something to write home about.

For support in planning your YPO or EO Forum Retreat or Family Event, contact http://EOtraveldestinations.com

Retreat from Smart Phones and Distractions = Tranquility

Whether you’re planning a corporate team retreat or embarking on a solo journey toward mindfulness, setting aside time to connect and reflect are distinctive benefits of a retreat from life’s constant distractions. Imagine a state of Tranquility when and where you are free from agitation of mind and spirit; free from disturbance or turmoil.

One key ingredient of our retreats plans for today’s bustling CEO’s and Entrepreneur’s YPO Forums (Young President’s Organization) and EO (Entrepreneur’s Organization) Forums, is to create an ideal space for tranquility, creativity and connection to thrive.

A Retreat from our Devices

A good norm and simple best practice for retreats is a technology free environment. Sometimes Executives are startled by the data on increasing smart phone use, denying they even come close to what’s reported in the daily averages.

Here’s the Math: We’ve gone from unlocking our phones 56 x a day in 2016 to 73 x in 2018, with generational divides that point to younger people checking phones as much as 150 x a Day https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/2019/01/smartphones-revolutionize-our-lives-but-at-what-cost/

Time away from family and work can be hard and since there’s always a possible emergency, so be sure your retreat allows for phone access and quick check ins during breaks. Hard to believe that checking phones while eating out has become an increasing social norm but the next time you’re eating out, look around you. Protect both retreat and individual tranquility with a clear technology ground rule.

Provide a Retreat Environment for Meaningful Interaction

In every retreat we have hosted for YPO Forums and EO Forums, increased connection and trust of the forum is a key objective. Yes, smart phones can have a negative impact on the social behavior and interaction of the group.

For Impact of Smart Phones on Social Behavior here is one of many articles on the topic: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0747563218304643

What makes for the ideal retreat environment?

An Environment that Supports Being Present


Being present is often difficult for participants who are thinking of a never ending to do list or looking in the rear view mirror of their day. Retreats can support presence through facilitation of active listening and participation. Your goal is for your group to be here and now.

2) A Clear and Significant Purpose of your Retreat

The first question of Retreat Planners should be What does success look like? At our YPO and EO Forums we ask Forum Moderators and Event Chairs to give us 3 magic genie wishes. Here’s 4 retreat objectives to get you started.

Fortune Magazine points to 4 Reasons to host a Retreat: http://fortune.com/2018/08/10/company-staff-retreat-research/

3) Purposeful Facilitation

A well designed forum retreat should have a clear agenda and facilitation that gets you to the Why of Your Retreat. While this sometimes falls on the shoulders of moderators, consideration of an outside, expert facilitator in YPO and EO dynamics is recommended. https://forumdestinations.com

4) Unplanned Time for Connection:

Finally, don’t forget that ah ha moments and connections often occur outside of your retreat program, during the informal, unplanned time. Be sure your agenda includes blank spaces for the magic to happen.

ForumDestinations.com is an event planning and facilitation firm, specializing in retreats and events for YPO Forums and EO Forums. Contact Concierge@ForumDestinations.com for help in planning and facilitating your next YPO, EO or Team retreat.

YPO and EO Forums Go Glamping

YPO and EO Forums Go Glamping

We pride ourselves on seeking out and finding unique destinations for our learning adventures with YPO and EO Forums and Family Retreats that includes fabulous Glamping. Explore some of our favorite North American Glamping Adventures at Glamping

Why is Glamping cool for Executive Retreats?  Because it takes your forum member out of their Bored Rooms to discover the Nature of Inspiration for a true learning adventure.

What is Glamping? 

Check out Glamping Hub

From exotic tent camps to Sioux Style Tipis, unique retreat destinations can provide an awesome environment for your next Young President’s Organization and Entrepreneur’s Organization Forum or Family Adventures.

Here are 5 things to consider in selecting the destinations for your next YPO or EO Forum:

  1. Location, Location, Location: Select a location that fits with your forum’s travel time and destination preferences. The closer to nature and the more untraditional the lodging, the better.
  2. Privacy: Private Villas and Glamping Sites, designed for YPO and EO confidentiality are best. If you are the only group, you get both privacy and VIP attention to event design.
  3. Unique Onsite Experiences: Seek out lodging that offers onsite or nearby activities for experiential and social learning. From Fly Fishing to White Water Rafting the possibilities are endless and important to retreat energy and movement.
  4. Fabulous Food: Delight your Forum Members with memorable culinary experiences.  Seek out VIP experiences for your Forum with the Chef.
  5. Forum Meeting Space:  Be sure your group has a private area for meeting, learning and connecting in addition to WiFi.

EO Travel Destinations provides VIP Corporate Event Planning for Forums and Chapters of the Young President’s Organization and Entrepreneur’s Organization.  Contact concierge@forumdestinations.com for a 48-hour turnaround on Retreat Proposals.