Welcome to the Summer Camp Leadership blog. For those of us who lead summer camps, making a positive difference in the lives of young people is our passion. Turning that passion into a reality, however, takes more than the ability to lead songs, teach archery or plan craft projects. Creating camp experiences that truly transform lives takes leadership. Leadership that creates a vision for the future, leadership that inspires and engages others, leadership that remains focused and stays the course. My hope is through this blog you'll find ideas, inspiration and tools to help you be a great summer camp leader.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Underperforming Teams

As a leader at camp we often find ourselves leading teams of people. What differentiates teams that excel from those that struggle? Mark Miller in his book The Secrets of Teams identifies the five most common reasons teams under perform.

1. Lack of leadership - Too often we think teams manage themselves. The reality is they are made up on individuals and need as much, if not more leadership than individual staff members.

2. Insufficient focus on results - Teams need a very clear, narrowly defined purpose that continually is revisited and reinforced. 

3. Wrong players on the team - Teams must have the right mix of people in terms of personalities, organizational position, authority and expertise. The team's mission needs to determine membership.

4. Skill gaps - The knowledge and skills brought to the team by its members must match the knowledge and skills required to accomplish the team's mission. 

5. No sense of community - Before a team can function effectively it must become a true team,  where members respect, support and involve one another.