Winnekota Leadership Summit--Schedule

All Times are Central

April 2, 2022

  • 8:00 a.m. — Registration / Coffee and Connection
  • 9:00 a.m.-10:30 a.m. —  Welcome and Opening Keynote

Ten Training Transformations for 2022
Sarah Kurtz McKinnon, The Summer Camp Society

We’re guessing it’s been a few years since you had the capacity to reassess your staff training. Your program was likely cancelled or significantly modified in 2020, and your staff training time likely focused on Covid mitigation. If you were in operation in 2021, you likely had the same situation, and relied on past training plans to orient your staff to their roles and responsibilities. But, for 2022, using a plan from three years ago is not going to fly. So much has changed in our world since then–including an increased focus on social justice and the combined trauma we have all experienced because of the pandemic–and your staff training plan needs to reflect and respond to these needs. In this presentation, Sarah Kurtz McKinnon, co-founder of The Summer Camp Society, will show you ten ways to transform your traditional staff training plan to prepare your team as best you can to serve kids and your community in this ever-changing world.

  • 10:30 a.m.-10:45 a.m. — Break
  • 10:45 a.m.-11:30 a.m. — Breakout Session #1

Tricky Management Conversations
Sarah Kurtz McKinnon, The Summer Camp Society

Most people don’t like conflict. However, as a camp leader, there are times almost every day when you need to have a difficult conversation as a manager. Sometimes, camp directors avoid these conversations in the hopes that the issues will go away on their own. Unfortunately, this avoidance almost always makes types of problems worse. In this session, Sarah Kurtz McKinnon, co-founder of The Summer Camp Society, will use miniature case studies to talk about how to have compassionate, fair and productive conversations with staff members when things get tricky.

3 Simple Hacks to Increase Mental Health for Campers and Staff
Ashley Colvin, Bareroots Coaching LLC

This session centers around three simple hacks anyone can do that will decrease anxiety, and increase connection and empathy with others. We will discuss the role of mental health coaching at camp and why they partner so well together. We'll have opportunity to learn and practice these three hacks with each other in a light and fun space.

They Return for The Relationship: Building Relationships & Culture At Your Camp To Foster Retention
Kelly Schuna, Hidden Pines Ranch

We all know staff aren't there just for the pay, so why do staff return? What can we do now, this season, to foster a strong culture that fosters retention for future summers? Culture starts with your leadership and a clear vision of your core values as an camp/organization. This creates a foundation for intentional relationship building with your staff, your camp community and staff appreciation. Attendees will leave with ideas and tools for creating a culture of connection that fosters retention. This session is geared towards leaders of all levels at your camp.

  • 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. — Lunch
  • 12:30 p.m.-1:15 p.m. — Breakout Session #2

Getting Staff Feedback and Fielding Staff Complaints
Sarah Kurtz McKinnon, The Summer Camp Society

Camp directors across the country have noted that their current staff teams are much more vocal than staff teams past. If staff members have an issue with a leadership decision, for example, they are likely to share their discontent. In more difficult situations, camp directors have expressed that cancel culture has made their jobs especially tricky. In this session, Sarah Kurtz McKinnon, co-founder of The Summer Camp Society, will share how to create a camp staff culture that uses this mentality in a generative way instead of a toxic way by creating multiple opportunities for receiving staff input. She will also share some techniques for responding to staff complaints.

Alumni Development for Your Camp:  A Multigenerational Approach
Maggie Braun, WeHaKee Camp for Girls

Camper and staff alumni are powerful advocates for the camp experience.  Together we will discuss the critical importance for taking a multigenerational approach to building relationships with alumni, leveraging the alumni voice on behalf of camp and maintaining history and traditions important to the generations in order to secure a bright future for your camp.  The session will focus on ways to identify, cultivate, and engage alumni from multiple generations. 

Intervention Strategies for Addressing Biased Behavior
Lindsay Bernhagen, University of Wisconsin Stevens Point

Camp is known as an inclusive environment, but sometimes unintentional or indirect comments or behaviors can have devastating impacts on our campers or our colleagues. This session will give participants a chance to discuss real life incidents of bias, and to practice using structured response strategies to intervene. We will also talk about how to use these materials in trainings for additional staff.

  • 1:15 p.m.-1:30 p.m. — Break
  • 1:30 p.m.-2:15 p.m. — S’mores-a-palooza
  • 2:15 p.m.-2:30 p.m. — Break
  • 2:30 p.m.-3:15 p.m. — Roundtable Discussions
  • 3:30 p.m.-4:00 p.m. — Closing
  • 4:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m. — Campy Hour