Monday, January 24, 2011

How the 5 Skills of the Girl Scout Cookie Program Shape a Girl’s Future

When a Girl Scout has learned the five skills (goal setting, decision making, money management, dealing with people, business ethics) of the Girl Scout Cookie Program she’ll be ready for success!

Think about it. These skills will help a girl through her academic career and are also skills that employers seek –whether it’s a bank, a high tech company, a hospital, a publishing house, a car dealership, an accounting firm or even the local pet store.  Every teacher and every employer wants:

  • Someone who sets goals and meets deadlines. Blowing a deadline can jeopardize a grade and it can mean blowing a deal. 
  • Someone who works well with others. As a boss, I know that I don’t want to deal with strife and complaining amongst my team!
  • Someone who understands about money. There is a real difference between earning your way and getting an “allowance.” People who understand the relationship between earning and buying make better decisions with their own money. And, they learn how money affects the global marketplace. 
  • Someone who understands customers. It doesn’t matter whether the “customers” are fellow students, hospital patients, TV viewers, a retail store or other companies. Every business has to know its customers and what they want. And in school, students need to know what their teachers expect and how things work in their school.
  • Someone who can influence others. This doesn’t just mean selling a product.  Teachers and employers want people who can sell ideas, pitch projects and make deals.
  • Someone who is honest, trustworthy and reliable. This kind of goes without saying, or it should!  
These are the skills that the Girl Scouts of Nassau County learn as they participate in the Girl Scout Cookie Program. And every year a girl is in Scouting, she has the opportunity to build on these skills. So, when you buy a box of our Girl Scout cookies, you are really helping a girl build these skills and learn from her selling experience.

This article originally appeared in the Garden City Patch.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Safety First!

As we begin the 2011 Girl Scout Cookie Program ®, we are asking for community support … After the goals are set and the plans are made, it is time to get to work, have some fun and get those Cookie orders!

Girls should show that they are Girl Scouts – Uniforms are always nice, but sometimes when you are all bundled up in a coat, who can tell?  Girls can carry a sign, or show their order forms! And, it is always good to have a Girl Scout buddy along! Whether you are canvassing the neighborhood or at a booth sale, or even visiting your parent’s workplace, it’s more fun with a friend!

Of course, girls need an adult partner – The involvement of the adult is dependent on the age of the girl. Girl Scout Daisies, Brownies and Juniors should always have an adult on hand when they are taking orders, selling directly or delivering Cookies. Older girls should have an adult nearby.

Plan ahead – Make sure you have a plan to safeguard money, and to keep up with order cards!  Do not keep large amounts of cash.  Give proceeds to a supervising adult so that it can be safely deposited in the bank.

Use common sense – Girls should never enter anyone’s home or vehicle, unless the person is well known to them and their parents go too! Girls should not go into any area that seems unsafe.  If they are going door to door, only do so in the daytime.  Be careful when crossing streets and when loading and unloading cars.

Protect privacy – The girl’s privacy and that of the customer. Girls should not give their private information to people they do not know.  Girls should use a group contact number that will be intercepted by an adult.

Be wise on the web – Girls should take the Girl Scout Internet Safety Pledge before going online and should follow the guidelines related to online marketing.  Parents can support girls by using the Cookie Club for online order taking, although that system does not currently allow money collection.  Older girls can work together and with their parents to promote their Cookie orders through social media sites.

By keeping these safety tips in mind, girls are sure to have a successful and fun Cookie selling experience!