We’ve discussed the use of metaphor as an organizing principle for a training program, but the Wisconsin Department of Corrections took it one step further. They created an Employee Care Kit that they gave out to over 160 office support staff during a two day annual training event, as well as to probation and patrol agents at their Agent Basic Training. It is an idea from a former staff member that Nancy DiBenedetto has used at unit meetings. Now, Linda Zimbelman, Shelly Weber and Jean Schriever make up the baggies for training.
The Kit is a simple Ziploc baggie filled with the following items as well as a multicolored printed list that explains their significance:
Puzzle piece: you are part of the big picture
Peppermint: you are worth a mint!
Rubber band: to stretch yourself
Jolly rancher candy: to remind you to take time to laugh
Cotton ball: everyone needs a warm fuzzy
Q-tip: to keep your ears open to all possibilities
Tootsie roll: bite off only what you can chew
Pen: to replace the ones that everyone keeps taking
Eraser: erase the bad day troubles
Lifesaver: when you are drowning in work
Band aid: when things get a little rough
Isn’t it wonderful? It is elegant in its simplicity!
If you have done or seen something similar, please let me know and I’ll post it in the next Tip.