Grain Surfboards: Leave The Boardroom For Board-Building

Grain Surfboard's offers companies a chance to take a step back from the daily grind at its home base, a working farm in Maine. Companies can de-compress and focus on building a united front, through unique classes where they learn to build surf boards in teams of two. In early 2012, Vans took team-building to another level, taking on board-building.

Tait Hawes, Van’s Manager of Art Directors, commented, “I wanted to bring my team of art directors together to get inspired and build cohesiveness in a place that was as far away from computers and cubicles as possible. Grain Surfboards provided exactly what I was looking for in the best way possible. Building wooden surfboards by hand, in two person teams, in 20 degree weather in Maine. Done.”

Far away from computers, cubicals and boardrooms sits Grain Surfboard’s  home base; located on a small working farm just minutes from the beach in Maine – a perfect place for companies to bring their employees to re-connect or to decompress.  Early this year California-based company Vans did just that.

Grain welcomed Van’s team of art directors to get “hands-on” in the cold Maine winter for a different kind of team-building retreat.  “Our company’s ethos is based in individuality, authenticity and creativity,” states Tait Hawes, Van’s Manager of Art Directors who organized the trip.  “Our history lies in skateboarding and independent thinking.  In other words, we don’t do trust falls.”  Tait was looking for an uncommon experience to share with his co-workers and found that and more at Grain.

"Grain offers a truly unique experience for a group of professionals who are looking for that out-of-the-box way to build confidence and a sense of cohesiveness among co-workers. Organized into groups of two, each pair builds a board from start to finish during a 3-day board blitz. “Hands-on work results in a great sense of satisfaction that lends itself well to any company’s team-building objectives”  says Mike LaVecchia, co-owner of Grain. “Our shop is well equipped with everything a group of professionals would need; wi-fi, full kitchen, plenty of coffee and tons of fresh, locally prepared food daily.” 

The folks at Grain embody a perfect combination of creativity, craftsmanship and friendliness. The added bonus were the farm fresh meals that we still talk about today. This place is no joke. Bring your boardrooms to boardbuilding. It’s time.”

Grain continues to “bring the boardroom to boardbuilding” by welcoming small groups of professionals to an inspiring rural setting and a workshop where cooperative creativity is built in.

Read more about Van’s trip to Grain’s headquarters, or click below to watch a short film on Van’s trip to Grain.