Montana Leader and Committee Camp

Montana Young Life Leader & Committee Camp!!!!! Sep. 25th-27th.

September 25-27 at Fairmont Hot Springs, we will be getting the whole region together for a great time of fun, fellowship, idea sharing and training. All volunteers and committee members are invited and child care will be provided.  Please talk to your leader and committee and invite them to come.  We will have an R1 on July 1st and an R2 on Sept. 10th.  To download the flyer click here.

mt leadership weekend copy

The Malibu & Canyon Invasion

Missoula Young life buswelcome to malibu

107 Billings, Big Sky and Cody,WY Young Lifers arrive at the Malibu dock on Friday

Please be praying for safe travels, smooth border crossings and an amazing encounter with Jesus for all those heading to Malibu.

2 full buses will arrive at Canyon on Saturday with Young Lifers from Bigfork, Missoula, Great Falls, Helena and Butte

Please also pray for safe travels and incredible divine meetings with Jesus. Can’t wait for reports on all that God will do in this upcoming week!!


Are the People Who Take Vacations the Ones Who Get Promoted?

Too many people limit their happiness and success by assuming that taking time off from work will send a negative message to their manager and slow their career advancement. But new research, says that the exact opposite is true. Taking a vacation can actually increase the likelihood of getting a raise or a promotion.

For the past two years, I’ve been partnering with the U.S. Travel Association to promote the business case for taking time off from work. Their new initiative, Project: Time Off, is one of the most robust examinations of how vacations affect companies and employees alike. Their analysis has found that Americans are taking less vacation time than at any point in the last four decades. Why? According to Gary Oster, Managing Director of Project: Time Off, “Many people don’t take time off because they think that it will negatively impact their manager’s perception of them. But, that isn’t the case at all.”

If you or someone you know needs to be convinced to use your vacation time, here’s a list of reasons why it just makes good business sense:

  1. Taking a vacation increases your chances of getting a raise or promotion.

According to Project: Time Off, people who take all of their vacation time have a 6.5% higher chance of getting a promotion or a raise than people who leave 11 or more days of paid time off on the table. That percentage may sound small (and it is a correlation versus a causation), but it is the polar opposite of the idea that staying at work might mean getting ahead. It simply doesn’t.

  1. A positive, engaged brain improves important business metrics.

In The Happiness Advantage, I describe research that shows that when the brain can think positively, productivity improves by 31%, sales increase by 37%, and creativity and revenues can triple. In fact, the conclusion of my HBR magazine article, “Positive Intelligence,” which was

But not all vacations are created equally. Consider research that shows that the average vacation yields no improvement in people’s levels of energy or happiness upon returning to work. In these cases, it wasn’t the time away that caused the negative or neutral impact, it was the travel stress. In a study of over 400 travelers from around the world, Michelle Gielan from the Institute for Applied Positive Research and I found a strong negative correlation between travel stress and happiness. However, we also found that 94% of vacations result in higher levels of happiness and energy if you 1) plan a month in advance and prepare your coworkers for your time away, 2) go outside your city (the further the better), 3) met with a local host or other knowledgeable guide at the location, and 4) have the travel details set before going. Smart vacations lead to greater happiness and energy at work, and therefore, greater productivity, intelligence and resilience.

  1. Your manager will perceive you as more productive.

According to research done by the U.S. Travel Association, managers associate personal happiness with productivity. In fact, when asked what vacation time benefit would motivate managers to talk to their employees about using more vacation days, the top benefit was increased personal happiness (31%), followed by productivity (21%). Why does happiness win out? Because most managers understand that happy employees are more productive and collaborative.

  1. Not taking time off means giving yourself a pay cut.

There’s no research necessary for this one; it’s just simple economics. If you’re a salaried employee, and if paid vacation is part of your compensation package, you’re essentially taking a voluntary pay cut when you work instead of taking that vacation time. Why would anyone do that? Four out of 10 employees say that they can’t take their vacation because they have too much work to do. But, think about it this way: Whether or not you take a vacation, you’re still going to have a lot of work to do. Life is finite, and work is infinite.

But what if you work in a culture that’s just not supportive of taking vacations? In that case, it’s time to come together with your coworkers and create a new social script that says: “Of course we take all our paid days off, because we want greater happiness and success at work.” This gives everyone license to benefit from time off. Once the social script allows it, your decision to become happier becomes much easier.

Start changing the conversation in your own company right now, simply by sharing this research. Then, start planning your next vacation. It’s good for you, and your career.

based on a decade of research, was that “the greatest competitive advantage in the modern economy is a positive and engaged brain.” To be truly engaged at work, your brain needs periodic breaks to gain fresh perspective and energy.

Creekside or Bust! First camp trip of the season leaves Saturday

Thinks to do before camp

Hi all, Camp is fast approaching and there are a few things that will make your trip go smoothly.

Camp preparation

1. P-Card- Make sure your pcard is working and know what your credit limit is so you have enough while at camp. Shannon has that list.

2. Ten Day Call In- Make sure to put your 10 day call in deadline and time on your calendar. There is a link to the online “Ten Day call in” in the trip leader email they send out at least a month before camp. If you are less than a month out and don’t have this email contact the camp or Shannon asap.

2. Bus payment- If you are paying for the bus with your pcard and need to increase your credit limit or if you need assistance doing a check request, please contact Shannon.
3.  Leader training for camp-
  • All leaders going to camp need to have current background checks and faith & conduct. If leaders are driving to camp, they also need to be current on their driver’s questionnaire.
  • All  camp leaders should go through the online Right Now Media training videos about camp. Call or email Shannon if you have questions on how to set up your leader’s email addresses so you can send these videos out.
4.  Camp deposit refunds are done through Concur as an invoice. You will create a new vendor with the parent’s name & address and attach a substitute invoice for both the tax document and the invoice. Email Shannon if you have questions on this or would like her to process the refund for you.
5.  If you are borrowing vehicles to take kids to camp, here is the insurance form to fill out.
7. Please call if you feel lost or overwhelmed so we can help you.
Blessings, Shannon

Getting Your Office Summer Ready

In just a couple days (June 13 for Malibu) the first set of staff will be heading off to start summer assignments.  Soon, all of us will be leaving the office for camp assignments, leading a cabin or simply taking a vacation.  Here are a few key operational preparations to make for when you are at camp, either as a leader with kids, or on assignment this summer:

  1. Outgoing voice mail: Make sure your outgoing voice mail message states you are at camp and includes your return date.
  2. Emergency contact information: If there is an emergency, parents may call the office or your cell phone for information. Make sure your outgoing voice mail provides a phone number to call in case of emergency. In our neck of woods, if you don’t have someone locally handling your phone calls, this will most likely be the emergency phone number provided by the property. This is true of your office phones and your cell phone.
  3. Empty your voice mail box: You should never have your voice mail box full. There is a risk to this happening when we are gone for extended periods of time without phone access and getting a lot of calls about camp. You don’t want a parent who is unfamiliar with Young Life getting the message your voice mail box is full.
  4. Automatic email response: If you will not be checking email, have an automated return to all incoming emails. This automated email should let folks know when you’ll be returning and how often you’ll be checking email and who they should get ahold of and how, in case of emergency.
  5. Who is picking up the mail? Have someone checking your U.S. Postal Mail. They should know how to process donations. Make sure they make a copy of any check they are sending to the YLSC.

Now, you are administratively prepared to let the camping season begin!

Great article on meeting with donors: My $5 Million Capital Campaign Ask that BOMBED

I wish you could have been there. . . .bombed

It was a hot summer day in Virginia.

I was seated in a small conference room, with one of Virginia’s top business kingpins.

There the successful businessman sat —  so smart and so together – at the head of the table.

And we all lined up on the other side of the table:

  • the President of a fabulous local college,
  • the wonderful Chair of our capital campaign,
  • the successful businessman’s right hand lady,
  • and me – consultant to the College.

And we were there to make a $5 million solicitation.

We were going to ask him to name one of the schools at the college.

Oh yes, we had rehearsed!

We had even practiced! Twice, even.

I was so smart that I had scripted every single thing we said.

We timed our conversation down to the minute – who would say what, and when they would say it.

It was like a performance.

Or, maybe it was more like a sales presentation.

We were so organized, and so proud of ourselves.

I had even memorized my part so that I could pull it off perfectly.

Only we had forgotten a few big things. 

Here’s what went wrong:

1. We didn’t have any private conversations with the donor ahead of the big solicitation.

There was no way to know if he was really excited about the idea – or not.

We had to work thru his right hand lady who was the gatekeeper.

She was on our volunteer team, and we had to trust her to do the warm up.

What would I do differently now?

I’d manage somehow — someway — to find out about his temperament.

I would manage to chat up the donor somehow at an event. I’d be charming and make his acquaintance:

  • I’d ask him to tell me about his family’s involvement in the college.
  • I’d ask him to tell me the story of taking his business public.
  • I’d remark about his right hand lady’s involvement and much we liked her.
  • I’d ask him about the legacy he wanted to leave in the region where he was so successful.

I’d hope that might establish grounds for me to chat with him more and find out his interest in a large naming opportunity.

2. The room itself was awkward and uncomfortable.

I read a study recently that said people were more generous and open to new ideas if they were seated in comfortable chairs.

Well . . . . this wildly successful company had a reputation for sparse amenities.

The owner prided himself on a no-frills office.

So our room itself did not lend itself to relaxation, jovial conversation and great visionary thinking.


What would I do differently now?

I’d do everything I could to change the location!

I’d find a place where he was comfortable.

But a place that had comfortable chairs!!

3. We overly scripted the solicitation.

In our nervousness about the whole thing, we clung to our previously assigned roles.

We stuck to the script for dear life.

Everything was completely programmed. I think maybe we threw up a “wall of words.”

There wasn’t any room for HIM TO TALK.

What would I do differently now?

I’d plan for every time we mentioned a topic, to pause and wait for him to fill in the quiet space.

I’d create conversation at every opportunity.

 4. We didn’t plan to allow for conversation.

Somewhere we had forgotten to make this into a conversation.

We didn’t think to ask him to talk to US.

We just wanted to talk to him. :(

What would I do differently now? 

I would walk in with my group, and before we had said a word, I’d turn the conversation over to him.

I’d ask him to tell us WHY he cares so much about that small local college.

I’d let HIM present the case for support to US, not the other way around.

That way, our meeting would get off on the right foot.

Step-by-step through this big ask, I would pause and encourage his feedback.

THEN  — after much conversation taking lots of tie — we’d probably emerge with a nice commitment.


Don’t throw up a “wall of words” at your donor.

Be sure you do smart reconnaissance before you make the visit.

Warm your donor up as much as possible, and . . .

listen Your Way to the Gift!  

Montana Young Life weekly update: Leader and Committee Camp coming up in the Fall


Montana Young Life Leader & Committee Camp!!!!! Sep. 25th-27th.

September 25-27 at Fairmont Hot Springs, we will be getting the whole region together for a great time of fun, fellowship, idea sharing and training. All volunteers and committee members are invited and child care will be provided.  Please talk to your leader and committee and invite them to come.  We will have an R1 on July 1st and an R2 on Sept. 10th.  To download the flyer click here.

mt leadership weekend copy

Camp Leader Training Resources

We have added a ton of camp leader training resources to the camp resources tab above. Check it out! Go to

Luau Bozeman Wyldlife