Episode 28: The Business of Camp with Stephane Richard



Stephane Richard talks about why it’s necessary to focus your attention on the business side of camp, and how it can help your decision making, profitability, and sustainability.

“Without data you’re making decisions based on instinct and emotions.”

We find out what Stephane, Patti, and Curt are reading right now.
Patti – You are a Badass at Making Money – Jen Sincero
Stephane – The Imperfect Board Member – Jim Brown
Curt – The Brotherband Chronicles (7th book) – John Flanagan

We learn about how “camp found Stephane”, what he spent time doing in Swaziland, and how his kiddos got their adorable camp names. He also sets us straight about how to approach data collection, and how to analyze it once you’ve collected it. A free tool he likes is Power BI by Microsoft.

Stephane gives us some tips on the type of questions we should be asking in terms of data collection that will help us build marketing strategies, program planning, and financial viability. He also gives our hosts some advice to track program outcomes and references the American Camp Association’s Youth Outcome Battery, and discusses the three most important things a camp professional should be focusing on.

Curt manages to bring the conversation back to programming and Stephane totally sides with him when Patti teases him about it!

Annnddd there’s some sort of unidentifiable noise in the background from time to time, we’re not sure what it is, but Curt and Patti have a theory that Stephane was actually recording from a space shuttle. (It hasn’t been disproven yet!)

How to reach Stephane


Lightening Round

What book do you recommend for other camp/ recreation professionals?
Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changes, and Challengers – Alexander Osterwalder

What’s a word that has meaning for you professionally?

What’s one piece of advice you have for an emerging camp/ rec professional?
Know what you’re good at, know what you’re not good at, hire people that are good at the things that you’re not good at.

What’s your favourite quote?
“The important thing is not to stop questioning, curiosity has its own reason for existing.  – Albert Einstein

Things we’re grateful for

Curt – Heaters and air conditioning, and actual walls. And H-Vac people?
Stephane – Snowplows & snow tires. (who’s a Canadian?)
Patti- Change and the ability to adapt.

Random Questions

What are three things you can not live without? Case Ellen from the Camp Pros FB group
Patti – Books, Wayne, chocolate chip cookies
Stephane – Wife and kids, music/ boardgames (only the good ones), eggs
Curt – Internet, optimism, dog (but really pizza)

What are the last three emoji’s that you used?
Curt – happy, crazy, thumbs up
Stephane – thumbs up, winky happy, happy
Patti – rock on hand, nerd smily, poop

How to reach us

Curt: Summer Camp Pro

Patti: The Camp Nerd

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