Mission & Our Story
Our 24 Points
We refer to our Company’s value system as Leaps & Bounds 24 points. The #1 responsibility of each employee in Our Company, from President to the most junior trainee, is ‘stewardship of the our 24 Points.’ Many companies speak of its values. At Leaps & Bounds, we live our values. They guide us in Company direction, program design and our hiring decisions as well as in our personal interactions.
…To help kids grow into happy, healthy, responsible adults.
More on Our Mission
Our ultimate goal, our guiding principle, the single thought that drives everything we do from programming to the way we interact with the children is…to help kids grow into happy, healthy, responsible adults.
We believe that protecting a young child from disappointments does nothing other than strip the child of the skills necessary to handle life’s inevitable bigger disappointments. Protecting a child from the consequences of their actions is one of the worst mistakes a parent, teacher or coach can make (unafordable consequences such as physical harm or permanent emotional damage being exceptions.)
Many children’s sports facilities have great mission statement that are created around the sport. We want to have an impact that is longer than their sports career. We concluded that happiness is a worthy goal and ‘responsibility’ is the foundation of happiness. We further deﬁned responsibility as ‘the habit of making choices that bring joy and harmony into one’s life in the long run.’
Our conviction in our deﬁnition of responsibility was strengthened when some decades ago we learned about the Stanford Marshmallow Study. This experiment followed children from age 4 through adulthood and concluded that the primary determinant for satisfaction in life is not intelligence, educational attainment or job status. It is the ability to delay gratiﬁcation, to set aside the pleasures of the moment in favor of happiness and joy in the long run. You might enjoy this comical video of how these 4 year olds handled the situation…Kids Marshmallow Experiment – YouTube.
7 Unifying Principles
- Respect…To respect each individual unconditionally.
- Trust…To be trustworthy, trust others & exemplify integrity.
- Teamwork…To work together as a unit, solving problems through collaboration.
- Forthrightness…To communicate in an open, objective, straightforward manner: (1) In disagreements, go directly to and only to the person who can solve the problem; (2) Think not of ‘tact’ but of equal parts respect and candor; (3) Seek ﬁrst to understand the other party’s perspective before sharing your own.
- Growth and Innovation…To pursue perpetual growth through constant innovation.
- Respect for the Company…To respect: (1) The Company’s image; (2) The Company’s assets; (3) The Company’s value system.
- Balance…To seek balance in business and in life.
More on The 7 Unifying Principles
In the late 90’s we attended Business Owners’ Boot Camp where Jeff Metzger shared his behavior standards for his organization. It was exactly the way we wanted to operate so we adopted them. The behavior code is applied to all who chose to be part of the Company, employee, student, parent, alike. We lead by them, live by them and make little and big decisions by them.
11 Teaching Principles
- Unconditional Respect
- Keep the Kids Safe
- Clearly Communicate Expectations
- Catch Kids Doing Things Right
- Discipline with Natural Consequences
- Be Enthusiastic
- Daily Challenges
- Daily Successes
- Perpetual Motion
- Creativity, Variety, Fun
- Love, Empathy, Compassion
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5 Hiring Mantras
- Hire the character, train the skill.
- We shall go short stafed before we go poorly stafed.
- Hire and promote from within.
- When in doubt, do not hire.
- When faced with people problems, act swiftly, seeking to do the greatest good for the greatest number.
More on The 5 Hiring Mantras
Their primary purpose is to provide us the discipline to hire carefully. In the 5 Hiring Mantras we have learned that 90% of all one needs to know about hiring, because the most important skill is the discipline to say ‘no’. The 5 Hiring Mantras exist to give us that discipline.
A little about our ﬁrst and grounding mantra, Hire the Character, Train the Skill: It is important to make the point ‘character’ does not refer to the simple deﬁnition, honesty and integrity. Honesty and integrity are a great start, but to us, ‘character’ means alignment with our value system, The 24 Points. Succinctly put, we believe you cannot teach that thing called character. Character must come with the package. Hire the character, train the skill.