Websters says the definition of Summit is the “highest point: or a “conference of highest level officials”. In March of 2022, Shoot Like A Girl hosted a Summit for our contracted instructors. This conference was attended by 21 members of the Shoot Like A Girl team in Fort Worth, Texas. The goal was to refresh, renew and reward our contract instructor team. An event like this was a huge investment for the company, both financially and in the precious resources of time; however the return was tenfold.
I’m not sure I realized how much this Summit was needed, until we saw the joyful responses and reactions of our contracted instructor staff.
The Summit was essential for fellowship after living the past two years in a pandemic state of mind; as well as for education; since we had implemented many new protocols and enhancements to the experience at Shoot Like A Girl events. It is with great pride that I look back over the pandemic to realize that Shoot Like A Girl only stopped traveling for 90 days, from March 12th to June 12th, 2020. When we resumed traveling, we rescheduled and/or relocated events to make up the those that were missed during the three months of not traveling – doing as much as we do in nine months in six months; followed by an even more aggressive schedule in 2021. The service each of our contracted instructors provides is herculean, and it was the absolute right thing to do to prioritize them for the Summit and officially recognize their value.
The Summit’s agenda included a team building exercises that strengthened the bond and esprit de corps of the team. We went to an escape room where we split into four teams. Somehow the Oklahoma girls all ended up on the same team, and were quite proud of themselves for escaping first! We did “Karen’s Word Games”, designed to help learn about each other; and we even played a round of Dirty Santa, thanks to GTM Original’s generous donation of concealed carry purses. These team building exercises not only have benefit to the team, but also to the company. As an event marketer for the top brands in the shooting sports industry, our team needs to have camaraderie and cohesiveness that exudes confidence and competence to our guests. This investment in the Summit enhanced and strengthened our extremely professional image.
As equally important as fellowship, we also invested in training and cross training. The team learned about our new processes for events, best practices, products we have on display and product demonstrations. Additionally, they learned about being a brand expert for Shoot Like A Girl from Kelsey Puryear, VP at the Murray Road Agency who gave vital information on social media interaction.
Ashleigh Mallard of Ashleigh Mallard Photography taught the team about capturing images and making reels for Instagram.
We had breakout sessions to review training techniques for all stations (pistol, rifle, archery, gun counter, and safety conversations). We covered administrative items as well, like booking travel and bidding on events. Overall, the long weekend was packed full of information, which the team immersed themselves in, leaving them feeling more empowered to interact with our guests and be Shoot Like A Girl’s Brand Experts.
There are many companies that have ethos, “People First”, but how often do they truly invest resources in ensuring a strong team. Todd, my husband and a retired USMC First Sergeant reminds me often, “take care of your people, and your people will take care of the mission.” He is right, and I am so happy we made the investment in the Shoot Like A Girl Instructor Summit. This very well could be (one of) our highest point to host a conference of our highest officials, are most valued contracted instructor staff – in other words, Summit!