We spend a lot of our off-season time recruiting and interviewing staff for camp. This often means our evenings and weekends are booked with calls, but it’s worth it.  Jarod’s vision for Timberlake is to build upon existing, and new, relationships.  Here is a quick tour of how we find the right people for Timberlake.  

Initially, there is a point where if we need a Waterfront Director we ask  “What’s the candidate’s experience in supervising aquatics program and staff?”  Those are gateway considerations. We train staff for almost three weeks. We can provide Red Cross Lifeguard and Water Safety Instructor courses, as well as farming skills, knot tying, backcountry cooking, etc.

We are looking for qualities you can’t train for. The top three baseline indicators for success at Timberlake are passion, perspective, and patience.

Passion is in Timberlake‘s DNA. We work well with passionate individuals because we truly believe that “Anything Is Possible” and create space and program activity for campers and staff to dream big and turn their vision into reality. That may take the form of a Frisbee Golf Course, an Infinity War re-enactment game or an afternoon of Guerilla Gardening – it’s all been done.

Balancing that passion is the more subtle quality of Perspective. I have worked with extraordinarily mature young staff – because they can already see things from a leadership perspective – which is the perspective of putting the greater good above one’s individual needs. For example, a mature staff with perspective understands that allowing staff to freely choose their day off would result in understaffing and that such privileges can’t be selectively gifted.

Finally, the most important of all in this triad: Patience. Timberlake staff know me to preach incessantly about the value of sleep

Question: What’s the difference between a good staff and a bad staff?

Answer: Eight hours of sleep!

This has its roots in what a staff member told me almost twenty years ago when I was a counselor.  I tended to be a role model for hard work over self-care.  A staff member looked at me straight in the eye and explained why sleep matters.  “I know when I am rested, I can handle any challenging situation with these kids – because I have more patience than they do.”  As a parent and educator, this became a core tenant for me.  Kids are meant to test adults – that’s a necessary and healthy part of the process of growing up. All those challenges can be peacefully resolved by an adult who has the advantage because they have cultivated their inner reserve of patience.

At Timberlake, we are looking for passionate leaders who have the perspective to see the bigger picture and value of systems that cultivate patience in their interactions.

And the best news?  Our team for this summer is almost complete, but there are a few jobs open.  If you are interested in a summer job that offers skills to last a lifetime, please contact [email protected].

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