Educational Session Topics
New for the 2017 / 2018 Season
JOB DESCRIPTIONS . . . For Board Members!
You read that right. One of the biggest challenges I've discovered that hinder Camp Directors, (Executive & Program Directors too), is the lack of structure ABOVE them. Boards that suffer from Founder's Syndrome, volunteers and donors who "think they own the place". This session will deal with situations and strategies for starting this most uncomfortable conversation, offer some templates for getting the ball rolling and ultimately getting your "higher-ups" onboard and focused on the same goal, delivering a quality program for the youth you serve.
How to Avoid the Deferred Maintenance Trap
We all know these two words all too well; DEFERRED MAINTENANCE. Translation, put it off until it falls apart.
This session will cover a variety of situations, planning models and procedures to properly categorize and prioritize those things that need immediate attention and what can be put off ... and for how long.
We will also discuss creative ways to fund these kind of projects and how to create a multi-year plan to tackle the issues head-on!
Dealing with today's Tech-Addicted kids!
Today kids are more plugged-in than ever. Between the social stress of missing-out if they don't stay constantly "notified" to what their friends, (real-life and cyber) are doing, to the anxiety they experience when they are away from their devices, this session will cover trends and tools for dealing with this growing issue. Cyber-bullying, the corporate science of keeping us addicted and how begin a Healthy Tech conversation will be covered.
How to make Science Camp last all year!
As a teacher and a parent, I know the value an outdoor environment can bring to the an educational experience. I also know first-hand how this experience can be multiplied and enhanced or allowed to be just a flash-in-the-pan on the academic calendar. This session will go over specifics and communications you should be having with your chosen camp facility, (or as the Camp Director, you should be offering to your attending schools). Special focus on timing, (ie. where in the academic calendar are your kids when camp occurs) and including NGSS standards before, during and after the camp experience.
How to Deliver the WORST presentation Ever!
This is really more of a pre-conference topic, (I hope).
This session will go over some basic presentation skills, including what to say and do & what NOT to say and do.
Ever had PowerPoint read to you? Yeah? Me too. STOP THAT!
How much information is enough?
Graphics vs. Text
When to shut-up .... and MORE!
Spotting Signs of Suicide Contemplation
This session will cover various Warning Signs exhibited by campers and staff who may be contemplating suicide.
Today's world is filled with per-pressure, social media and other online information, (and even encouragement) that past generations never encountered or considered.
This session is shared from the shared-story viewpoint of a suicide survivor.
You may be surprised to learn that conventional assumptions around this topic may not actually be true.
NonProfit Management Issues
How to Fire a Friend
Camp staff dynamics include friends who are now supervisors and multi-year relationships that carry-on far beyond camp. Terminating employment of a camp-friend is akin to kicking a family member out of the house.
In addition to common best practices, this session will explore ways to make a very difficult situation a bit smoother, including how to identify challenges, documentation methods and ways to break-the-bad-news.
Done properly, this can be an excellent growth opportunity for all involved.
THIS IS MY MOST REQUESTED SESSION, EVER!
Reputation Management & Repair / Branding
In all things, it's harder to build than to destroy. Building a good reputation requires effort, patience, and time. Destroying a good reputation only requires a single moment's misstep. The secret to building a good reputation? Become a person who deserves one.
This session will impart grown-up attitudes and behaviors to camp staff to drive home the fact that they are, (now and forever), your Camp Staff.
Think Like A Parent
Who is your customer? Many say it's the camper who has a wonderful time at camp and wants to come back. The happy camper is actually the result of a successful SALE to the real customer ... the Camp Parent. Who signs-up the camper, who compares camps and makes the final decision, and most importantly, who writes the check to send their child to camp? This session will focus on how you deliver your message to your customer and how to attract NEW customers; aka PARENTS.
Communication strategies and often overlooked loopholes will also be discussed.
We're not friends anymore?
Staff progression is an often overlooked challenge for Camp Directors. How do you teach a former member of your aquatic staff to now supervise his peers?
Learn practical communication methods for before and after the promotion from staff to admin team.
Effective Facility Use
How to make the best use of your property to bring in a variety of revenue streams, outside of regular camp business operations.
Traditional Camp, Day-Camp, use by Rental Groups, Weddings, Snow/Winter Encampments, International Programs, Private Group Retreats & Outdoor Education are just a few ways your camp can stay above water and indeed turn a profit.
Session explores the challenges, pitfalls and profitability of a variety of possibilities.
Expect the unexpected!
What to do when something happens that wasn't covered in staff training. How to cope and handle emergencies, uncomfortable situations, personal information shared by a camper or fellow employee, knowledge of illegal activity and more.
This session is provided to reassure camp staff that almost anything they encounter has been dealt with effectively by others. Tips and methods on how to cope are shared.
Dealing with Analysis Paralysis
. . . and other Volunteer-related challenges
Navigating the Volunteer Jungle