Camp Woodland Blog

Counselor Appreciation: A Lesson from The Container Store

DSC07435One of the things I have enjoyed about watching The Container Store maintain its position on the Fortune 100’s list of Best Places to Work is the philosophy by Kip Tindell, CEO, on employee appreciation. He believes that “if we take care of our employees better than anyone else, then they in turn will take better care of the customers better than anyone else.” If we adapt this way of thinking at camp, it translates to:


 To show the Woodland counselors how much we value their efforts and the AMAZING job they are doing with the campers this summer, we decided to plan a few surprises this week as a way to say THANK YOU. On Monday, we sent the CIT’s with 15 minutes left during rest hour to the cabins with the instruction that they were to tell the counselors to come down to the picnic benches for a meeting.

By the look on some of their faces, many staff thought that they were “in trouble”, but in actuality, they were far from it! The golf cart, disguised as the Cathy’s Ice Cream Mobile, came down the Woodland road and stopped to offer each staff member a tasty ice cream treat. Cathy’s Ice Cream also donated bags of candy for each counselor. All were grateful for the sentiment and the small token of our appreciation for the MANY things they do.


But, wait – it doesn’t stop here! At assembly on Tuesday morning, the announcement was made that it was “Give Counselors a Hug” Day. All campers sang, “We love you counselors, oh, yes we do. We love you counselors, and we’ll be true. When you’re not with us, we’re blue. Oh, Counselors, WE LOVE YOU!” The counselors were asked to stand in front of their cabin group and close their eyes. Campers lightly touched their counselors to say thank you for: making them smile, making them laugh MORE (when they are already laughing), listening to them, teaching them how to do something they never thought they could do, being patient, knowing what is important to each girl, offering comfort when they are sad or homesick, and MUCH, MUCH, MORE!

We have a WONDERFUL group of counselors and staff this year, and we can’t THANK them enough for all they do!!! Woodland Counselors, WE LOVE YOU!

PS. Thanks Kim Aycock for writing this blog post!!