July 26, 2022
People often ask me, “What are the most important skills you need to be a good camp director?”
Some answers are obvious:
But one skill may not be obvious. It may not be a universally needed skill, but it is critical at Camp Champions for at least one person:
Slushy machine management.
The slushy machine is a volatile member of our household. It laughs at my attempts to understand its wily ways:
This travails of the slushy machines must seem unworthy of worry, but it illustrates one of the oddest parts of being a director: on any given day, your responsibilities toggle between the mundane (slushies) to the profound (talking with high school students about having dominion over their phones) to the challenging (helping a cabin resolve a dispute).
In my previous jobs (in finance and consulting) there was no such variability. Every task was a 6-9 on a 10-point scale. Here, you can go from a “1” task, to a “10” task and then need to be silly all in just 30 minutes.
The only job that is comparable to it is being a parent - one moment you are comforting a sad child and then you are pretending to be a velosiraptor. The difference is that this family is bigger than most!