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September 11, 2018

Denise Thompson

Mark Albanese

Stayson Isobe

Kenisha Rhone

Doug Tammaro

DENISE THOMPSON: Good afternoon and welcome to this month's Capital One continuing education webinar. Today's topic is New Years staffing, mentoring those that you bring in. Before we begin I would like to say a quick thank you to two of our corporate sponsors, Capital One and ASAP Sports. Capital One is the presenting sponsor of our continuing education and professional development series while ASAP Sports provide the official full transcript of each monthly webinar. As a reminder, the webinar and ASAP Sports transcript will be posted later today in your CoSIDA Connect resource library off the main page. During this webinar today you can ask us questions all to all of us through your chat box that is to your right by the panel. I'm your moderator, Denise Thompson Assistant Commissioner with the Big Sky Conference office. I would also like to have my guests introduce themselves as we have a great panel coming up for the next 30 to 35 minutes. Go ahead, Stayson.

STAYSON ISOBE: I'm Stayson Isobe, Assistant Director for Athletics Communications here at Northern Arizona University.


KENISHA RHONE: Hi, I'm Kenisha Rhone. I am the Director of Digital Media and Social Strategy and Media Relations at Belmont in Nashville.

DOUG TAMMARO: I'm Doug Tammaro. I'm the Assistant Athletic Director for Communications for Arizona State.

MARK ALBANESE: And I'm Mark Albanese. I'm the Director of Sports Communication at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington.

DENISE THOMPSON: All right, everyone, we are definitely ready to bring this webinar to you this Tuesday. Just to give you a little outline of how we're going to do this we're going to bring up topics and just have a fruitful conversation with all of us going back and forth and if at any time during this webinar you have a question to ask us, please go ahead and submit that question and we'll bring it forth to the panel. So to get things started I'd just like to pose this question to the whole group and say, as a mentor and someone who works a hierarchy in your athletics department, what is the one thing that you are looking for when you're hiring a new staff member or looking for a new co-worker when you're serving on a panel? Doug, you're the veteran of the group. Go ahead.

DOUG TAMMARO: Okay. I think that the main, one of the main things I look for is, first of all, how much do they want the position. I think that's very important. Once you get to the point of when you're interviewing candidates who is reaching out for them and what do those people have to say, I think that's very impressive to me. Because we want to hire people that have proven they can do things and good people are talking about them. So if you sit there and wait for us to call your references I think you're kind of behind. I think that these days it's good to have people reach out for you.

DENISE THOMPSON: Okay. Absolutely. Stayson, when you're on a hiring committee and you're looking for someone whether it's in communications or in marketing, what is some of the traits that you are looking for in candidates when you're looking for someone to join your team?

STAYSON ISOBE: I think it sounds really simple, but I think one thing that I really look for closely is how much do they want to be here at Northern Arizona University. How much research have they done about our athletic department, about our university, because just, from that alone, it really shows a certain level of interest. We have had candidates come in for various positions here throughout our athletic department who know that we're located in Flagstaff, Arizona at 7,000 feet, but don't even know that our cross country team has won back-to-back national championships and that's a really big pride of point for us right now as an athletic department. So to not even come in with that sort of knowledge, kind of indicates to me just either, A, a certain level of laziness when it comes to the preparation process or B really just a very lack of significant interest, I would say in the joining our team here.

DENISE THOMPSON: Absolutely. I agree. Serving on different committees and having to hire so many interns and student workers it seems like with every year a new generation comes in and I literally have to tell myself, okay, what's the new thing for them now? How do I even relate to them. Because I'm not that old, but I'm definitely far out of the box that when I was in school, I mean, there was no Twitter. Facebook you still had to have a college e-mail address to even get on it. Snapchat, I would have been in a lot of trouble in school. So I think trying to relate to new staff and student workers as well it's definitely so much different. And I know that like when we're talking about mentoring and staffing this topic can go from left to right and there's so much to cover in a short time. So let's move it over to Stayson first. I would say for anyone, how is it on your campuses that you recruit students to come and work for you. Are there career fairs or job fairs at the school, and how do you get them to the point where although they reach out to you that they actually physically come to your office and begin working for you.

MARK ALBANESE: I can hop in on that. Here at PLU I employ about 30 student workers every year. So there's a significant hiring that goes on every school year with that. One of the big things I do, a couple just different prong approach. So one I reach out to our compliance officer, I get a list of all the student athletes that are communication majors, and I'll shoot-out e-mails to those people. If they're a student athlete, they understand what we do and they're a communication major and so they have an understanding of just how to communicate, how to write stories, do some of that stuff. So every year I get a few people doing that. I also work with our intermural director and I get a list of people who have engaged in at least one or more intermural activity and they're going to be a sophomore through a junior in the coming year and I send out an e-mail to all those people seeing interest. Again, they're interested in sports, they might not have some of the other skills, but at least they're engaged and on campus, they like sports. Then the third thing I do, I have a general just ad that goes out to the campus connect on line, so anybody can apply to that. So those are kind of my three ways of getting my pretty large student worker pool every year.

DENISE THOMPSON: Wow, that's a lot. 30 is way more than I've ever had.



STAYSON ISOBE: I think one thing that's pretty unique for us here at NAU is that we have a really immersed communications program in our school of comm, where they're all housed basically in the same area of the building and that we have got print, we have got radio and we have got TV all located in one area. So it gives us a nice pool of students who are interested in different realms of journalism of communication, to really allow us to kind of pick what we need. Whether that -- it could be a videographer, it could be a graphic designer, it could be a staff writer possibly. So that's something that we're really fortunate to have here at NAU is kind of to have that built within the university itself and to be able to pull students, interested students from there.

MARK ALBANESE: I was going to say kind of just know your university. I used to work at a school that had sport management, so we got sport management students that were unpaid, but it was an internship. So certainly if you have something on campus that somewhat relates to athletics you really need to talk to those people and take advantage of that opportunity built-in on campus just like Stayson does.

KENISHA RHONE: Definitely. I was going to mention was using the resources that you already have on your campuses that already pull students who are interested in doing work on campus. Not necessarily hit them over the head with the athletics thing, because I think that people think of it very narrowly and so I try to get them to think long-term. Yes, you're a nursing student, but do you realize athletic trainers are sometimes nurses. Like do you realize that you, because you're a videographer, most programs need someone to do video. They think so narrowly that people just be on the course and field of play, they don't think about all the things behind the scenes. And so that's my job is when I go to those career fairs, I go to the ones people don't think about. I go to the business school because people will think, well these two don't have anything to do with each other. Actually, business has a lot to do with what we do inside of athletics and so getting them to see the wide variety of things that we can offer besides just bouncing balls and kicking them is the whole other side of the world that has to do with making sports go.

DOUG TAMMARO: I'll add that because we have a strong journalism school some of our student workers are actually former student media. They would maybe walk in the Cronkite School and they want to be broadcasters or TV talent and they realize there's not, that's the not all as great as some people make it out to be, and they see what we do and they see the good stuff, they don't always see the long hours, etcetera and that kind of stuff, but it's worked out that they end up coming to us after maybe a year or semester or two and say, hey, can I give this a try.

DENISE THOMPSON: Absolutely. Hey, back in the day I thought I wanted to be on radio, I thought I wanted to be on TV, I mean, I was probably one of those kids, Doug. So I'm sorry that you probably would have gotten me and you're like, hey, sure, no probably, so what's sports information? I think I can do that.

DOUG TAMMARO: We take them all.

DENISE THOMPSON: There you go. Can you guys maybe talk about a creative way that you've been able to utilize student help. Kenisha I know you do digital media and social strategy, is it beyond the actual day-to-day aspects of having students or assistants that you've been able to creatively utilize them and for long-term.

KENISHA RHONE: Right now I have an intern whose job is to help me build out my social media calendar for the week. She had no idea that there were so much -- she just thought, oh, stuff pops up on Instagram. I'm like, no, we literally build almost an hourly calendar by day depending upon what we have going on to see about -- oh, somebody just called me -- to see what it is that we actually do. It's not just, oh, I'm just taking a Snap because I walk into class, right, like there's strategy behind, when was the last time we posted something to Snap, when was the last time we posted something on Instagram, when was the last time that that thing was translated to Facebook for our alums and our donors. Giving them the opportunity to see that it's more than just what they do for fun, this is my job, I get paid to do this. And so getting them to see that it is bigger than just that one little moment and the strategy behind it and how that translates, not just for the personal accounts and for their personal brands, but how companies are using those strategies as well for the long-term, getting to see the bigger picture helps them prepare for where they're going afterwards.

DENISE THOMPSON: Absolutely. Got it. Mark, you mentioned earlier of the intermural portion of it all. How are you able to distinguish a student pay rate from intramurals and sports information?

MARK ALBANESE: Yeah, well, for us the pay rate is really high out here. Minimum wage is 11.50. We just, keep everybody at minimum (sound went out.)

They need to ask and part of that that's a life lesson of people aren't just going to automatically give you a pay raise because they think you're awesome, you need to prove to them why you're awesome.

DENISE THOMPSON: Yeah, I wish I was negotiating pay raises for work study back then, because I didn't even know you could do that.


Doug, can you maybe touch on a little bit of how you are able to keep your student workers over time? I know when I was doing it I was trying to get them as a freshman or sophomore to have them for two or three odd years, when they're a baby, fresh, you groom them and then you groom them after a year and then they're gone. How are you able to keep the good ones around for multiple years.

DOUG TAMMARO: Well I think the one thing we do is is we don't rush them in too fast, I think when they come in as students as freshmen, we don't overwhelm them. I want them to get off to a -- I tell them, if you flunk out you're not going to work here, that's obvious. So get settled in and meet people and then we just bring them in easily. So it's great to have a phenomenal freshman, but it's also good to have a sophomore who is still learning and we have been able to keep kids by paying them or the different ways of paying them, like keep them happy and making sure that they're working in the sports that they can get the most out of. But we don't keep them -- we have a tremendous amount of opportunities here between the Cardinals and the Suns and the Mercury, the Diamondbacks, and so we kind of have them here, my goal here is to have them for a couple years and then have them go work at one of those other places. The ones that stay, we compensate them well, they get some good Adidas gear, little things are important to the students, but the other thing is, we really treat them as one of our staff. I try to make sure the coaches know who they are, I try to make sure the coaches know how important they are and I want the coaches to basically think that that student assistant is a full-time SID. And I just tell them when you're around these coaches just try to care the most, try to care the most of the people in the room and handle yourself like a pro. And then they get confidence and if you have confidence in one place maybe you just want to stay.

DENISE THOMPSON: Okay. Stayson, as a former graduate assistant and now in your sixth year at NAU as a full-time, what is something that you maybe wish your boss knew now for something that maybe you were going through as a GA. Whether it was about time commitment or just being able to juggle everything or something that you wished you would have just known earlier that can help us in higher positions truly understand the ones under us a little more.

STAYSON ISOBE: I think that it, the biggest, I didn't work in the athletics as an undergrad, I wasn't an undergrad student worker in our athletic department, I was actually part of our student media writing for the school paper up here. So I think transitioning into the athletic department the first thing that I learned quickly was, I am a graduate assistant, but to kind of to Doug's point, I was treated like a full-time employee. Which really made the transition easy for me. It was a big larger time commitment than I had anticipated early on, coming in, especially juggling graduate school, but I think with having a boss at the time who really respected my Master's Degree and my pursuit of a post-grad degree and allowing me to work towards that while still maintaining my time commitments to the athletic department. That's the biggest thing I think a supervisor can do is understanding that the graduate students are also pursuing a degree and allowing them to pursue both passions I guess you could say is really important and something that I tried to really share with our current GA's, having been in their spot. And of course our undergrad students, student workers who are working toward their own degrees as well.

DENISE THOMPSON: Okay. Absolutely. Kenisha or Mark, can you maybe just touch on any tips on how to keep students involved GA's or post-grad interns involved to the point where they're not seeing it as, oh, it's a job and I have to go to this event tonight, to the point where they start asking you guys questions of, hey, so what else can I do and just really get the mind going to make you in return as a mentor want to actually help them pursue their goals.

MARK ALBANESE: I think part of that is show that you have passion and you're having fun at your job. I think that's a big thing. Obviously going to a sporting, home sporting event is somewhat stressful for us from a management standpoint, especially if there's multiple events on campus. But taking the time to talk to your students, have fun with them, I think that goes a long way. And also kind of as Doug pointed out, we get polos for everybody if they work basketball and volleyball, those sports. We sometimes get food. At the end of the year I put together an e-sports tournament and we had, we put a TV outside the baseball field and we announce the game, the championship game. Just things like that that show we care about them, they're valued, but then also this is a fun environment. That's why we work in sports and kind of just try and convey that as best we can just in everything we do. And have fun in the office. My office workers they really like the environment up there and I think that's the best way to get people to want to work in athletics is just see the fun we have on a day-to-day basis, kind of making everything else a little bit more palatable of long weekends and etcetera.

KENISHA RHONE: We don't have anything cool like an e-sports tournament. That sounds awesome. But I think one of the things I do is try to connect them with people in the real world and let them see that it's not just me grinding away here at Belmont, like my friends at Vanderbilt are doing the same thing, my friends at the Titans are doing the exact same thing that I'm doing. It's Friday night, yes, I'm net surfing on my iPad, but I got my other laptop open and I'm still doing work because that's what we do. Getting them to come to CoSIDA After Dark things with me or going to somewhere, if we're just having something off the grid with people in communications, getting them involved with organization inside the city, getting them to see that it's really a huge family of communicators depending -- not even depending upon the level, but just people who are involved in communication, so that they can see it's more than just this one little school and this one little place doing these mundane quote unquote things, there is this massive connection, this massive network of people who do exactly what they think that they want to do for the rest of their lives, hopefully, they're spread across the country. And so we are great networkers and I think that that's one of the things that I wish more of our colleagues would do is introduce kids not just to what we do here in our offices, but take them to the AAA teams in their town, take them to their hockey teams, take them to all those professional teams that happen to be in your area, get them to see that it's more than just here. And that's what gets them hooked because they're just like, you mean I get to go to hockey for free? Because it's my job? Yes.


DENISE THOMPSON: Okay. Absolutely. We have a question from one of our people watching and it's, does anybody have experience trying to recruit work study and interns at very small colleges with an enrollment of 1,500 or less? What types of strategies did you utilize there that perhaps aren't necessary or don't apply to working at a bigger school. I know, tough one.

DOUG TAMMARO: I actually was one of those student workers. I thought I was good enough to play Division III basketball and I wasn't, so I was kind of looking for something else to stay in sports. I would think athletes at a small school might be the best way to tap into it, because if you're at a small school that's Division III, you're probably not going pro, you're probably realistic that you need -- but you want to work in sports -- I think student athletes probably are a great way to reach out to at a small school.

MARK ALBANESE: I can vouch. So Pacific Lutheran, it's a little bit more than 1,500, but not much more. And so Doug's absolutely right you need to find the student athletes, the comm majors, maybe the business school, really talk to as many people as you can just to see what sticks. Talk to the coaches. I've done that before of like, hey, who on your team -- sometimes people do Instagram takeovers or things of that nature, find out who is doing that for that team and then maybe have that person be employed for you. This summer we had our women's and men's soccer team going over to Europe, they were in England for a couple weeks. I had two student workers, they blogged about it a little bit and then I hired both of them to work in my office afterwards. So just finding creative ways to -- these people are out there, it's just you need to talk to enough people, you can identify where these people are at. And you can't expect them to all come rushing into your door, you need to kind of go out there and identify them and bring them in, explain what we do. Because most people don't really know what we do, myself included, when I was in college, it didn't really know that much about it until my senior year. So just kind of get out there and educate people. The other thing too is if you have a sport management program or even communications program, ask if you can speak in one of those classes. When I was at Wisconsin Parkside I spoke at a couple sport management classes and that was great of just getting myself out there and getting people aware of what we do.

DOUG TAMMARO: Let me add one more thing, I just thought of it. We have actually had some high school students work for us, volunteer at games, local kids that have heard about what we do and they maybe visited the Cronkite School and the Cronkite School told them about us and they work a couple games or they visit, I give a press box pass to see what it is, and they end upcoming to ASU and they end up working for us. That's happened three or four times and that's, if you have the local high school, sometimes those kids, they're very talented and you can get in their ear right away and let them know what you're doing.

STAYSON ISOBE: Before we move on I wanted to touch on Mark's point. We speak, we're able to speak at our -- and I spoke about our communication program here at NAU -- and we have the opportunity to go into the sports journalism class, sports reporting class, and for one introduce who we are and how we can be resources to them when they come to cover games, as we all know as SID's, but also for an opportunity to pitch our athletic department, our communications department, to see, hey, who is out there. And we have gotten a ton of students just from that alone. And then making them feel like they're a part of the team and they're not just here to work for us, but also in ways we can help them. And then hopefully that turns into a word of mouth where they recruit a friend who maybe could have been shy, maybe wasn't aware of the opportunity, but now their best friend is having a great year with our team and it's like, hey, you should join us. So the biggest ambassadors can be your own student workers themselves.

DENISE THOMPSON: Absolutely. I would say having students work for you, it's all glitz and glam, you get to go to the games, they get to do social media, there's perks definitely in it. But occasionally you run across student workers or interns, GA's or even former assistants who will reach out to you and ask you for recommendation letter. What do you do when you just don't want to give it? How do you politely turn them down and say that you may not be the best person to provide this letter of recommendation for them?


DENISE THOMPSON: I stumped you guys on that one.

DOUG TAMMARO: That's hard. I would say you do exactly what you said, maybe you just tell them that their experience and their production at our place wasn't the best that it might be better if someone else did it. Someone who had more time with them. Someone that had more positive time with them after they left here. If they are at that point where you can't help them and you were their last job, that's a hard one. But that would be my suggestion.

DENISE THOMPSON: You got something to add Kenisha?

KENISHA RHONE: This is really tough. I think that part of our job as being mentors to the next generation of professionals is to have those honest conversations like Doug was saying, but also try to find those spaces where there could be a silver lining. It definitely seems like there may not be for -- if it's their last position and they're applying for something -- but having those honest conversations and let's, let's look at your resume, let's go and let's match this up against the job description and let's really see, maybe it is your inflated ego, maybe you really think that you deserve a vice president position especially out of undergrad and you're really not ready for that. So let's see what we can find that matches your skill set better than what it is that you found. This is when that network comes in handy because you can also have them talk to other people who may be in a position of hiring, not necessarily hiring them, but people who can look at their resume and look at the job description honestly as the outside party and to be able to say this isn't a good match and here's why.

DENISE THOMPSON: I think we have all worked somewhere where it was more than an hour from our hometown, so you're taking a job in sports, it's different than what you're used to, so can someone just talk about having someone or multiple people of your staff new, not from the area, you already think you don't fit in because you don't know people, what are some of the things that maybe your staff or your previous jobs have done to make it feel like a very homey environment while you were at work. Whether it was you guys are going out or playing games or having an open door policy, what were things that made you when you came to work it wasn't work, it was a place that you wanted to be? Does anyone have anything that you just may have done to just make the environment just a lot more free?

KENISHA RHONE: The best thing when I started at the University of Pennsylvania as a GA was my staff taking me on a Philly cheese steak tour. Because I never lived -- I was dating somebody who lived in Philly, but he was just like, it's cheese steak, whatever. But my office staff, no, you have to know, we have to go to Pat's, we have to go to Geno's, and then we got to take you to this little hole in the wall in west Philly that's going to have the best cheese steak. Just that meant so much to me that they really just took me around to their favorite cheese steak places, that was our time to be able to bond, because I didn't know anybody there. And that was, it was lunch, but, yes, I got to see different parts of Philly that I never would have gotten to see and I had some really good cheese steaks.


DOUG TAMMARO: I think one thing that we try to do, as soon as that person's hired, I mean we try to take them through the building and meet everybody as fast as possible. And not just the administrators, the assistant AD's, but every person in the building. The trainers, the equipment people. I have different people try to run them through the building each day for the first week or so because everybody's out and about and they miss each other, but you just try to figure out a way to, how does everyone connect the face with an e-mail right now, because they're going to start getting e-mails from the person and you don't want them to get on an elevator after three months and not have met someone that they have been in contact with. That can happen now. So just try to have everybody on our staff say, if you're having a meeting with your coaches, why don't you take the new employee up to the meeting for two seconds and introduce them so they can see who they are.


STAYSON ISOBE: I think for me one thing that I really try to take upon myself is, it's a small, small gesture, but just asking them when they show up to a game or show up for office hours, just ask them how their day was. It seems like something that just kind of you take for granted, but it kind of goes back to my previous point about making them feel like they're not just working for you but you genuinely care about, hey, how was your -- if they tell me the last time I saw them I have a test in two day, ask them, hey, how do you think you did on that test, how was classes today. I think small, just really every day conversations where they feel valued as just as a person and not just necessarily as an employee, I think goes a really long way and that's one thing I know I really stress is I take upon myself to do.

DENISE THOMPSON: Absolutely. And I probably shouldn't share this because I don't want anyone to steal my ideas but Stayson probably knows what I'm about to say so I used to work with Stayson, Stayson was my assistant at Northern Arizona and after all we just had a very carefree open office environment and that's just kind of the way that I ran my office when I was there. But we are also very, very competitive and we work in sports. So occasionally -- I don't even know how I got this game but I got Phase 10. And so we would make it that we were literally having like a table out in the middle of our office, Phase 10, I would even bribe them and say, I'm going to go get us some pizza and I would bring them pizza and say, we're playing Phase 10. Stayson would keep track of a score. We would literally say, okay, what time on Thursday can you guys have a break, because we're not done yet. I would also like you guys to know that they definitely blocked me and I never won. I didn't win a single game at all. And so I blame all of them for ganging up on me. And I left NAU never having won a Phase 10. But it was like we're in communication, things just shouldn't be that serious all the time. And I'll even admit that our supervisor at that point in time actually walked in on us at one time and maybe at like 3 or 2 o'clock in the afternoon or something, I mean, yeah, we're in communication, you want us to communicate, this is what we're doing. So literally we didn't get in trouble and it was just laughing because, you know what, it's something different and they knew at the end of the day we were getting our jobs done. So it's supposed to be fun, you're getting your jobs done, but it's just something different that I felt like we needed to bring to the environment because when you're at work you don't want to clock out at five because they're like all waiting for the clock. When you stop waiting for the clock and you're like, oh, man, it's six o'clock, like, oh, okay, I got to go home now.


And that's definitely, just the kind of environment that we want to bring. I would say, does anyone have any advice for the assistants out there listening that maybe entry level that they wish that they would have known when you first got started in the business, whether it was time management, how to go about working with your different coaches, working with different sports, just sorting out your day or your game plan?

MARK ALBANESE: I guess when I was an assistant the thing I didn't realize is how much of my job is not even like actually sports information stuff it's making sure student payroll, just that type of administrative stuff, being in a lot more meetings than when I was an assistant. To me that's kind of the biggest difference is it's more like actual like, I don't want to say real world job, because that's maybe not accurate, but maybe just more of those duties and then, yeah, you're also doing all that other stuff you used to do on top of that.

DENISE THOMPSON: Okay. I do have a question from our audience again and this one is at a small D III school with enrollment that's a little over 300 students how do you motivate people who might not be interested in the sports field but you know have the ability to get the job done? Peer pressure? I don't know.


Positive peer pressure?

MARK ALBANESE: I think, so I employ a lot of students and most of them, by and large, do not go into athletics after they graduate. But one, it's a job, kind of teach them that these are skills that can transfer into whatever you're going to do and try and teach them those skills, because that, I mean that's what we are here for, we're all educators here, on our campuses, and so kind of focus on that of, this is going to help you get another job. You're in a high pressure situation and you're performing well, you're doing a great job, these are all things that any future employer would love to have in a prospect.

DOUG TAMMARO: I think one thing that we have on our staff directory, we also have a list underneath of our alumni who are alumni who worked in our office and what they're doing now. And if you scroll down, there's a lot of jobs that aren't sports. They're all making more money and working less hours and so God bless them. But I know it's kind of a good thing for people to look at and say, wow, she's the communications director for the City of Queen Creek or he's running the public information for the City of Mesa. There's just, we have former students and former assistants that are just doing other things outside of sports information. One of them is a PR person for the special operations in the Air Force. So you talk about someone that, he just got done working with the cave rescue people, the people that went in and rescued the cave. So that's kind of my go to now of this soccer release right now might not seem like much today, but this can go into something that's pretty cool and it doesn't have to be on the grass, as Herm Edwards would say.


DENISE THOMPSON: Okay. Another question I have for you guys is, how do you get your staff on board with an idea that they may not immediately accept?

KENISHA RHONE: You mean like using Snapchat and they don't use Snapchat?


DENISE THOMPSON: Yeah, something like that.

KENISHA RHONE: I really think it's important to show your level of buy-in by actually doing that thing. It's completely different when we're like, oh, you should use Snapchat because everybody is using Snapchat, that's what the hottest thing is. Well if I can pull up my Snap -- well my fake Snap account because you know I don't have a real one -- so, pull it up and show them the value in that and that how I am using that as a professional. There's professional teams that use Snapchat. Getting them to buy in and see that I've actually bought in, it's not just me giving lip service, makes a huge difference. I think that because we are communicators and we can spin things, we can make everything sound great, even if we weren't using it, even if you aren't on Twitter, you can make it sound awesome for your coach or assistant of why they should be on there or why they shouldn't be on there as the case may being. But I think that level of buy-in and you being able to vouch for it personally goes a long way.

DOUG TAMMARO: Sometimes you have to tell them, trust me, we need to try this. It doesn't mean it's going to be like this forever, it doesn't mean we're going to do it again next year or this week or whatever, but we just need to try this. Sometimes you're trying something because somebody outside your office asked you to try it and you might know it's not a good idea, but there might be something good that comes out of it and just give it a shot. That's the main thing. Just give it a shot.

MARK ALBANESE: Yeah, I think the big thing is just communicating why you're doing something. I think that goes a long way. So at the end of the day they might not a hundred percent agree with it, at least they understand how this decision got made and why we're going in that direction.

DENISE THOMPSON: How would you guys address the situation where you have a very talented student intern post grad GA or full-time assistant that is just really good at their job, but you seem to think that they just, everything they say is negative, it's very snarky, a lot of sarcasm, very negative. And you're trying to just teach them in a positive way like, hey, your talents can only get you so far because your personality has to follow-up and catch you the rest of the way.

STAYSON ISOBE: I think that that's a tough one. I think that it really comes down to just being really honest, saying, hey, you've got a future in this, you've got X Y Z skills, and you're great, but guess what, no one's going to want to hire you, whether it's an ego, whether it's an attitude, whatever it might be. You've got, when it comes to interview you got to sell yourself and it goes way beyond your skills, your technical skills. Can you be part of a team. And if you can't do that, then it doesn't matter what skills you have in place. So I think it's really just trying to hammer that home and say, hey, you've got what it takes, but no one's going to hire you. You've got to show that you want to be part of a team. We're all a team here. We're a team in our communications office, we're a team within our external team and you've got to work with people on a day-to-day basis and those interpersonal skills sometimes trump any sort of Adobe photo shop and design skills that you might have.

DENISE THOMPSON: I know we're all here, we're all in this business because we love what we do and we're trying to get better. So the last question that I'll post to everyone to answer is, how in your role and in your past experiences, how are you able to help someone coming in, a new co-worker, a new assistant, just so and so in the business, be able to achieve their goals? So I guess the question is, what conversations do you have with them or what can you teach them to say, you know what, if this is where you want to be, your three-year plan, your five-year plan, these are just the things that you have to do in order to come out on top so that you know what, this network that you have right now, they will be there along the way with you. I think the problem that we tend to face is, people don't want to tell us their goals and then they will apply for a job and you say, hey, I would have maybe tried to get you there and you never mentioned that in our conversations. So in your role you can answer two ways: How can you help pull that out of someone to get them there or what are things that someone should do in order to be able to achieve their goal in four, five, 10 years. Stayson, we'll start with you and then go around.

STAYSON ISOBE: I think that to, our responsibility as a mentor, whether that's to, if you're a director to your assistant director, assistant director down to your GA's and so forth. I know sometimes people might be hesitant to, as you said, Denise, to express what their goals are, what they hope to accomplish, but -- I'm going through it right now. I have three student workers working specifically with my primary sports, all of whom are new. All of whom have been in part of our team, our office for the last three weeks now, this is the third week of the school semester. So just trying to get out of them, hey, what do you want to achieve, what are you good at, and what do you want to learn. Because then I can craft roles and responsibilities, show them X Y and Z based on what they hope to accomplish out of this year. You know, it's their first year and we talked about that question earlier, about who how do you retain students, well, you want them to feel like they got something out of it and that's the biggest thing for me is how can I keep you here next year and to get there you've got to meet me halfway. Because, I mean, I can give you a whole list of jobs that you probably won't enjoy, but I want you to be able to say, hey, at the end of the year in May, I learned this, whatever that is. And something that hopefully they can take with them forever. So that's, that's how I would probably answer that question.


KENISHA RHONE: I think in my role as mentor that I have those conversations. I know that they are maybe afraid to say, you know what, I want to be the AD. Great. Let's walk backwards. Let's find people who have taken that path. You don't necessarily have to take the path through media relations, you don't have to do that through compliance, let's find where your strengths are, let's get you on a three year track to talk to people in the time that you're here in our office to find out what it is that they did to get where they are. I think of our athletic director because he came from a 20-year career in banking is a great person for our students who aren't even student athletes to be able to talk to to find out, how did you make a complete switch in your career and now are thriving that role that you didn't even know about as someone who was working in the banking world. But having those honest conversations about saying it's okay to want to be the SWA, it's okay to want to run your own department, let's just make sure that you have a smoother path than some other people. Let's not make you have the trial by fire just because you should have a trial by fire. You don't have to re-invent the wheel. If you want to be the next SWA or the next athletic director, let's find out what those people did to get where they are and have those conversations with those people to find out what they have learned, what they could have done better in their past to get them there. My job is to connect those two things, those interested student athletes or students and those people who have those positions that they want. That they think that they want to have. Unless you have a conversation with someone you're like, oh, no, I don't want to run compliance, that's way too much work. Unless you have that conversation before they find out that that's not for them or having an honest conversation with the person who actually runs your, oversees your office for communications, if they see (audio cut out.)

DOUG TAMMARO: I try to talk to them, what haven't we done. In other words, what haven't we offered you that's, what do you go home and say, oh, I wish Doug would ask me to do this or I wish he would ask me -- because I don't know, I think I know most of their skills, but I don't know them all and I want to know what haven't we done that they want to do. And sometimes when I ask them that question they kind of get a little uncomfortable because they're saying, why are you asking that? And I tell them think about it and come back. Scribble down 10 things, five things, whatever. I don't need an answer now. But heading towards next year, heading towards next semester, ask them, what haven't we done and what do we need to do to make sure we're getting everything we can out of you. I think that's a good question to ask.


MARK ALBANESE: Yeah, I think with that just having conversations with your students on a regular basis, kind of getting a sense of what they want to do. But also if you recognize they're really good at certain things, kind of lead them like, hey, you're a really good writer, have you thought about doing X Y Z. And maybe they're like, well I don't really want to do that, which that's fine or maybe they do and you kind of tailor things more towards what they want to do. Last year I had a student worker who I didn't know he wanted to work in sports information. So I said, okay. Last year I treated him like a graduate assistant, you have these sports, you have to, you're going to be held more accountable than any of the other students in our office because you're running these things. And he really took it to heart, he ran with it and now he's a GA at Central Washington. So I mean it worked great from that perspective, but I think you just need to know what they want to do and what they want out of this job. There's a lot of my students that all they want out of this job is they want to show up, watch a little bit of a game, get paid, do their one or two activities and that's it. And that's great, because we need those people. But we also really want those people that they want to do this for a career or they want to do something similar and really mentor that.

DENISE THOMPSON: Definitely love the insight that all of you guys gave us, especially with that last question, breaking it down from students to assistants that you may have. On different levels I think our conversation today was able to touch on so many levels. We were able to have conversations and questions about enrollment of 1,500 and less. We were also going with bigger schools and schools that offer different things about having a strong communications department, you know, on campus that offers video and TV and writing and graphic design and all those things. So I really do think that all the insights that were brought today were wonderful. I'd like to just take this time to thank all of our presenters for today's informative session and we also just want to extend our thanks to our corporate sponsors Capital One and ASAP Sports for their continued support of our professional development series. A reminder that you can find the on demand webinar and ASAP Sports transcript on CoSIDA Connects. Our membership portal will be on later this afternoon. And looking ahead, make sure that everyone looks at our continuing educational schedule on CoSIDA.com and all of our communications platforms. Later on this month we'll be holding a webinar on the Google cloud Academic All-America Program. And then in October we also be discussing a specific software for our favorite update about basketball. And we'll also hold a session on best practices for the crossover seasons. So Stayson, Kenisha, Doug, Mark, thank you so much for participating in New Year's Staffing, Mentoring those you bring in, our first continuing education webinar for the 2018-2019 school year. Thank you everybody for listening and have a great afternoon.

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