As a manager at Baudville, I find that one of the great things that we do is have off-site activities and meetings as a group.
We've done fun outings to baseball games (which may have resulted in a trip to a Casino, but who's telling?) and afternoon boat rides with a bucket of apples and a large slingshot.
We've even mixed a little business with pleasure in Denver, Colorado, as a team for our three-year planning review. What happens in Denver, stays in Denver, right?
Then, we have off-site meetings that are about learning and development, but also have elements of fun (because, hello, we are Baudville). One of the most recent additions to this category is KAMP. Watch our President/CEO, Brad Darooge, talk about what this is and how it's been a great new way for our managers to connect and grow.
Video Transcript :
Kick-Ass Management Project
Hi, I am Brad Darooge, President and CEO of Baudville Brands.
What is KAMP?
KAMP is an acronym for our Kick-Ass Management Project. It was born out of a need to have our entire leadership and management teams come together periodically around things other than business results.
As our organization has grown, we have more people managing and leading teams in the organization and wanted to bring that group together in a forum to work on things other than how the business is doing today or what are the things in front of us right now and use this as a forum to do different things with our leaders in the organization .
How did you come up with the name?
The idea of KAMP and the sort of acronym and the idea of going to "camp" that it was something away from work and away from the normal day-to-day.
What do you do at KAMP?
So far we've had different presentations from team members on various expertise on things that they're working on. We've had a heavy component of HR. One of our goals is leadership development and giving a forum for our younger leaders to engage with some of our more senior leaders in the organization to share experiences and talk about the leadership side of the business that isn't the skill set that they're doing today around marketing or accounting or those kinds of things. But, to really interact and engage on how we can become better leaders and improve the culture of the organization looking forward.
How often does KAMP meet?
Well, the intention was to meet every 6-8 weeks. We are off that rhythm a little bit, so we've had a couple of meetings so far and we have another one in the works in September. We aren't letting perfect be the enemy of good enough. We are getting going with these and the next one we've got a pretty exciting mix of some team building activities and an opportunity for people to interact as well as some good topics to cover with the group.
While the boss is away...
It's pretty rare when we all get to sit down and sort of break bread and talk about what's going on in each other's lives outside of the day-to-day work at Baudville. So, I think there is a big benefit to just the kind of shared experiences and interactions between leaders who maybe don't work in collaboration all that often. So, if we did no education and sharing from a formal standpoint, the informal aspect of that group coming together I think has a lot of power. We hope that we hire people who don't need to be managed every day, so the idea that manager's need to be in the building for their teams to run effectively, I think, is little bit of an archaic concept so the fact that those groups can get out also I think shows the rest of the team in the organization that they are trusted and sets a positive tone in the organization for manager's aren't there to help people do their jobs every day and there's time when we need to break away and look forward and do some of the hard work of sharpening our own saws.
What do you talk about at KAMP?
In our next meeting, we are going to be assigning projects to groups. They'll have a pretty long time between the next meeting to then come back and get some feedback. That's really going to be about our policies, our handbook so to speak. There's been a lot of discussion about some of those things being in need of review and refresh. We are going to push that responsibility down these team members to come back and sort of make TED Talk type pitches around this policy or program (i.e. - this is what we recommend going forward). I'm sure there will be some crazy ideas presented and we'll help support HR and the idea that we probably won't have a handbook. It'll be all digital these days, but upgrading some of those things and using that team to help make it happen.
What do the managers think of KAMP?
I would say we are off to a start, we've got some work to do to continue to push it forward and put more wind in the sails of it, but sometimes the first step is the most important step.