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August 2015
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August 2015
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Employee Development Summer Camp
Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Employee development programs don’t have to be dull. This summer, Edmunds.com’s 550 employees went to camp. Not a traditional camp with canoeing and campfires, but a summer-camp-themed employee development course designed to teach employees to be better at their jobs, all the while improving engagement levels. Employees spent part of their days in seminars learning about topics including leadership skills, hiring practices, and time management, and the rest of the day practicing yoga, guitar, or skateboarding in the park. “We had traditional summer-camp-themed things like color wars, a talent show, and even s’mores,” CEO Avi Steinlauf told Fortune, “but our ‘camp’ also addressed different areas of career development that employees had told us were important to them.” The idea came from Steinlauf’s childhood, he says. He spent his summers in Lake Como, Pennsylvania, where he learned a great deal. He took the format to the workplace when trying to picture a career-development program that wouldn’t bore employees, and he says the results were outstanding. “I was pleasantly surprised at how involved and engaged people were.”

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