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Lessons from Dolphins trainer teaches workforce productivity

By Staff | Feb 3, 2010

The local tourism industry gathered on Wednesday at the Harborside Event Center in Fort Myers to learn about creating and maintaining a productive workforce during a Lessons From Dolphins workshop hosted by the Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau (VCB).

As part of the VCB’s year-round Team Tourism program, the half-day event featured veteran professional dolphin trainer Bill Wolden of Dolphin Quest who taught participants lessons from dolphins that included: clear and consistent communication, rewards for good behavior, a positive attitude, sincerity, and having fun.

Wolden created an interactive atmosphere in which he explored each dolphin lesson through stories and videos about dolphin training and by playing interactive training games with participants individually and in groups. He showed how proven dolphin training techniques can be applied to relationships between co-workers, bosses, clients and even friends and family; and he provided relevant and easy-to-implement strategies to combat miscommunication, bad attitudes and employee turnover, thereby improving a company’s bottom-line performance.

“Participants came out of today’s program with fresh new ideas and a stronger sense of teamwork and motivation,” said Tamara Pigott, interim VCB deputy director. “They laughed, played and learned while being amazed by the intelligence and grace of dolphins and by how much they can teach us.”

Wolden has worked with Dolphin Quest since 1992 as a dolphin trainer, site manager and corporate director; and he is a renowned leader in the marine mammal training field. He was an instructor at Moorpark College’s Exotic Animal Training and Management Program, where he taught courses on animal training and public speaking. He also is a long-time professional member of the International Marine Animal Trainers’ Association. Wolden has conducted hundreds of lectures and workshops on dolphin training, workplace skills and self motivation; and he is currently the Director of Dolphin Quest University, which focuses on internal and external education programs for guests of all ages.

Dolphin Quest is a world-renowned international dolphin interaction company where people and dolphins make lifelong connections. With locations on Hawaii’s Big Island, Oahu and Bermuda, the company facilitates face-to-face dolphin encounters that blend fun, culture, inspiration and education. The organization’s Lessons from Dolphins program is an innovative experience that helps companies improve productivity, retention and bottom-line results based upon the company’s proven dolphin training techniques.

The VCB’s next Team Tourism program is scheduled for Thursday, May 20 to commemorate National Tourism Week. For details, contact Christine Davlin at the VCB at cdavlin@leevcb.com or 239-338-3500.

Team Tourism is a year-round informational program consisting of workshops and networking opportunities for industry partners, community leaders, and the VCB team in order to strengthen teamwork throughout the destination, and to empower travel industry leaders to maximize marketing opportunities available to them. The VCB hosts Team Tourism programs on a variety of topics.

To submit ideas for topics and speakers for future programs, contact Davlin at the VCB. To learn more about Team Tourism, visit www.LeeVCB.com .