To assist JCCs in building a larger pool of talent that can best steer their organizations in the future, JCC Association has selected nine Jewish Community Centers to pilot a program aimed at identifying and supporting those professionals.
The goal is to help JCCs develop a conscious, deliberate approach to attracting, developing and retaining people who have both the aptitude and ability to meet current and future organizational needs. The JCCs that will participate in the pilot include Tuscon JCC in Arizona; Addison Penzack JCC in Los Gatos, Calif.; Alpert JCC in Long Beach, Calif.; Calgary JCC, in Alberta, Canada; Jacksonville JCA, in Florida; Indianapolis JCC in Indiana; JCC of Greater Washington, Rockville, Md.; Sid Jacobson JCC, East Hills, N.Y.; and Evelyn Rubinstein JCC in Houston.
“Over the past few years, it became clear to JCC Association’s board of directors that we needed to address ways to promote and build better staffs,” says Joy Brand-Richardson, JCC Association associate vice president and director of training and professional leadership. “Our research within the Jewish communal world shows this is an area where JCCs need assistance, and we wanted to apply it so that JCCs can identify the skills and competencies needed to succeed in the JCC filed, as well as the talented individuals we want to retain and promote.”
The program officially launches at the end of September, when each participating JCC’s executive director and a selected talent management leader will participate in a two-day training workshop at JCC Association offices in New York. It will focus over a 12-month periodon two areas of staff development. The first will assist JCCs in developing a culture of staff engagement and learning. JCCs will work with staff to determine which skills individuals should focus on and develop; their progress will be tracked throughout the pilot. JCC Association will provide guidance through workshops and webinars in which staff can participate.
As well, JCCs will identify staff who excel in their jobs and have the potential to advance either at the JCC or within the JCC field. Those individuals will take part in LEAP (Leadership Enrichment and Advancement Program), a 12-month learning group involving specific learning activities, webinars, readings, small, workgroup sessions and two in-person summits. Each JCC will likely have one to three staff participating in this aspect of the talent management program.
“Identifying talented people who have passion for the field is something we talk about throughout the Jewish communal world, so we’re excited to be offering our JCCS concrete ways to nurture those people,” says Brand-Richardson. “It is a way of strengthening not only individual JCCs, but the entire field, as people grow, move to different positions and take what they learn with them.”