Mentoring as Summer Camp

summer campSummer is always the season of summer camp! My nine year old granddaughter, Kaylee, went to her first overnight camp last July…for two weeks and in another state! Before she went, if she talked with her two sisters about summer camp, you could hear the apprehension in her voice. But, when she was packing her camp trunk and looking at the camp website, she was super excited and ready to go…right now!

Camp is always all about meeting new friends and trying new things. There are typically skinned knees, a bit of homesickness, and the telling and retelling of supersized stories. Kaylee came back home much older than simply two weeks! Summer camp was a new awakening. And, next summer she wants to go back for a month!

What if mentors approached mentoring like summer camp? Every mentoring session would be the source of adventure and excitement. New skill and knowledge would provoke the gentle apprehension of the unknown as well as the loud excitement of a fresh opportunity. Protégés would put their name on every new insight, just like Kaylee put a name tag on every piece of clothing.

The setting for mentoring would feature color, charm and newness, like bumper stickers on a camp trunk. Every aspect of mentoring preparation would contain the close scrutiny of camp inspection right after breakfast. And, all protégé communication would be as upbeat and animated as camp mail call.

What are ways to turn your mentoring relationships into the freshness of summer camp?


P.S. You might enjoy “Tim Ferriss Will Teach You How to Quickly Master Any Skill,” by Drake Baer,, June 14, 2013.


Add Your Response


Never miss a post! Sign up to have future posts delivered to your inbox:


Dr. Chip R. Bell is a world-renowned authority on customer loyalty and innovative service. Global Gurus ranked him in 2018 the #2 keynote speaker in the world on customer service; #1 in North America. He also is the author of numerous national and international best-selling books including Take Their Breath Away, Managing Knock Your Socks off Service, Magnetic Service, The 9½ Principles of Innovative Service and Customers as Partners. His books have been translated into over a dozen languages.

His newest customer service book is the award-winning, best-selling book Kaleidoscope: Delivering Innovative Service That Sparkles.

Dr. Bell has appeared live on CNBC, Bloomberg TV, CNN, Fox Business, ABC, CBS, NPR Marketplace and his work has been featured in Fortune, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Forbes, Businessweek, Entrepreneur, Inc. Magazine, and Fast Company.


More on Chip