Leadership with Impact!
The Tampa Connection Class of 2018-19 kicked off its year at our Opening Retreat on Friday, August 24, 2018. We had a fun-filled and action-packed full day at ZooTampa at Lowry Park, learning about Tampa Connection, our projects, our teams, our board of directors, and our class members.
Our mission for the day was to provide the class of 2018-19 with a fun and energetic day that will prepare the class members for a year of leadership development, community involvement, and relationship building with fellow team members, class members, and the Board of Directors. Enjoy reading below about how we accomplished this mission!
We started the day with a challenge to the new class: be open to change and personal growth. Throughout the day, the new class members were shown how Tampa Connection achieves its mission and vision by providing leadership training with impact. The Tampa Connection Board of Directors are dedicated to providing programs and opportunities that will have a positive impact for the class members individually, for their respective employers and companies, and for the community and nonprofit agencies. And it all started this past Friday!
Throughout the year, we will focus on building relationships, leadership development, and the importance of giving back to the community. Our Opening Retreat program included two speakers who helped lay the foundation for these focus points. The class first heard from Clint Babcock with Sandler Training. Clint worked with the class to identify best practices for building relationships and networking events. Clint emphasized the importance of identifying your goals prior to accepting invitations to different events, essentially networking with a purpose. He also explained to the class the importance of being inquisitive, how to read body language, and other important ways to create the foundation for a connection when meeting new individuals.
We also introduced the class to Eric Kidwell from Smart CX. Eric spoke to the class members about the different types of leadership styles. He emphasized the importance of setting expectations, communication, and culture. We are excited to partner with Eric Kidwell and Darryl Ross, the two co-founders of Smart CX, throughout the 2018-19 class year. Eric and Darryl will provide monthly leadership training sessions for the class members to allow them to hone the leadership skills discussed at the Opening Retreat.
In addition to leadership training and relationship building, there was a lot of discussion throughout the day about the importance of giving back and the various nonprofits Tampa Connection has impacted throughout the past 33 years. Following our Tampa Connection tradition, we identified the new teams and revealed the respective nonprofit paired with each team for the 2018-19 class year. Below are pictures of each team and the name of the nonprofit they will be working with this year.
Red Team – Exalted Warrior
Green Team – Starting Right, Now
Blue Team – OnBikes
Purple Team – Meals on Wheels
Orange Team – Stay in Step Recovery
After the morning presentations, the class members had lunch in the zoo and broke up into their teams for a competitive scavenger hunt, which was won by the Purple Team! After exploring the zoo, the class returned to the Reilly’s Reserve where the fun REALLY began! Each team presented a team skit themed around “A day in the life of a Tampa Connection class member.” The Red Team won the skit competition with their entertaining imitations of the various networking styles they expect to encounter at the upcoming Fall Mixer! After some closing remarks, the class enjoyed a well-attended and lively happy hour. Truly a day to remember!