So...apparently not everyone "loves hugs"

So...apparently not everyone “loves hugs”. The 2019 Leadership Tri-County Class started off with eleven strangers networking with each other, including alumni and sponsors, early on a Thursday morning. Feeling a bit awkward with the experience was definitely later expressed (especially among the non-huggers). Little did they know that in a few short hours they’d be teetering on a tightrope hoping the same strangers would breech their personal space and catch them or push them back up.

Leadership Tri-County took strangers and provided an environment where we had to get to know each other’s strengths and weaknesses very quickly, and encouraging us to not only to support but to literally catch each other when we fall. And fall we did, as we shared sweaty helmets and cheered each person through the challenging and at times a bit intimidating ropes course. We went in as strangers but came out new comrades and survivors (of course survivors may be a little exaggerated as I am a high “I” on the DISC profile). The DISC profile is a personality profile test delivered the second day amid role- playing and much hilarity by Mindy Lipsky of Innovative Coaching, and helped us to bond even more as we recounted how the personalities showed in our ropes course experience the previous day.

I am very grateful to work for Citadel Federal Credit Union, a company that has over 80 years’ experience putting the needs of its members, communities, and team members first to model our core value of “people helping people”. Additionally, Citadel embraces people development in many ways, especially when it comes to identifying potential community leaders and committing to help them strive for excellence in all they do. It is not surprising that Citadel chose Leadership Tri-County to help me and many others accomplish this!

Jennifer O’Donnell and her talented team have accomplished more in a day and a half than many long-established programs could ever hope for! Leadership Tri-County was able to provide unique and engaging activities and training opportunities that helped eleven strangers become supportive confidants. This comfortability fostered deeper conversation and collaboration quickly which will enable the program to meet and exceed the expectations of its participants. You would think that after many events and activities were jammed in the short day and a half we would be tired, but not so. The adjectives more suitable to describe us at the end would be energized, enthusiastic, and excited for what’s to come. There is no mystery here why every alumni we spoke to wanted to do the program again! Well if not a big hug, a high five is definitely in order for Leadership Tri-County!

Jeanna Baker

Market Manager, Limerick

Citadel Federal Credit Union

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