Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Spotlight on Daddy Tuesday -- Greg Bishop of Dads Adventure and Boot Camp for New Dads

I am excited to share my first Spotlight on Daddy post with you.  After month of featuring Spotlight Mommys each Monday, I was excited to hear and learn about some amazing dad's who are also creating products, services, etc. that help makes lives of parents (both Moms and Dad's) easier.  Stay tuned on Thursday, when I will share more about Greg's company, Dad's Adventure and Boot Camp for New Dads, and share a review of his New Dad kit, done by my husband.

But, until then, please enjoy my first Spotlight on Dad interview with Greg Bishop.

Name:  Greg Bishop
Company Name/Product/Service:  Dads Adventure and Boot Camp for New Dads®
Company Location:  Irvine, Ca
Company Website:  www.Dadsadventure.com
Twitter Handle: @ DadsAdventure
Age of Company:  Daddy Boot Camp® is in its 21st year!  Dads Adventure its 16th.

Tell us a little bit about yourself.  How many children do you have?  What are their ages? Your hobbies? Etc.
I have four kids and I’m a trauma center consultant by day and work with hospitals around the country.
My full time hobby is Daddy Boot Camp! 
Briefly explain your business.  How did it come about?
My six brothers and I grew up taking care of babies, which happens when your parents have 13 kids. To us boys, babies were like puppies; they were a lot of work at times, but they were fun to play with.

When my first baby arrived, I was a natural at calming him when he cried and of course, making him happy. After four, other guys were asking me for advice, so I decided to help. In 1990 I recruited a few friends and asked them to bring their babies to orient some dads-to-be at the local hospital. When some “rookies” said they had never held a baby before, we handed them ours and they went home thinking “I can do this.”  They did and later returned as “veterans” with their own babies to guide the next batch of rookies, and Boot Camp for New Dads was off and running.

No women over 2’ tall allowed; just babies and men, like a “nursery in a locker room.” Boot Camp for New Dads now operates across the U.S. and overseas on U.S. military bases. It’s helped prepare over 250,000 men to be fathers, and is expanding internationally.

In 1995, we formed Dads Adventure to sponsor the non-profit Boot Camp for New Dads and develop broad support for new fathers. We publish/produce Crash Course for New Dads: Tools, Checklists & Cheat Sheets, the Crash Course DVD and online workshop, Dads Adventure magazine, Hit the Ground Crawling:  Lessons From 150,000 New Fathers, and DadsAdventure.com to bring to new fathers the information they need to do their job. The NewMomsProject.org is our latest venture. 

What has been a struggle while starting up your company?   

At first it was a struggle to get people to recognize that guys could use a little information as they become dads.   We’re way beyond that now.
What did you do in your past work life? 

In my “day job”, I’m the president of a consulting firm that works with trauma centers around the country. (see above)
What have been some of your major successes? 

Seeing Boot Camp spread to other countries.  When guys becoming fathers can learn from other guys around the globe, it’s a win/win for everybody.
What have been some of your major challenges? 

Getting people to appreciate the impact an involved father makes.  And with just a little bit of information guys can start off feeling much more confident.  It helps when moms-to-be are aware of this as well.  Moms are the most important factor in how involved a guy becomes with his baby.
On those impossible days, what motivates you to keep going? 

The guys we talk to that are becoming dads.  It used to be that they worried about taking care of a crying baby.  Now they’re concerned about being good fathers, balancing work and family life so that no one gets shortchanged, and supporting the new mom in their life.  And crying babies.  More and more guys are stepping up to the plate and we see them inspiring each other.  And, frankly, they’re doing their job as dads without much support from the world around them. 
What is your balancing secret in managing a business and family? 

A veteran dad in a Boot Camp workshop had a good way of putting it that went something like this:  Life is like a jar full of balls.  Fill the jar up first with the big balls (work, family, etc.) then add the medium balls (keeping the house up, etc.)  last of all, add the small balls (things that don’t change your quality of life much) that aren’t that important.  Make sure the big balls are in the jar first, because they’re the hardest to fit in.  Just go from there.
What is next for your business?  

We are introducing the New Moms Project www.newmomsproject.org to give moms-to-be an idea of what goes on with new dads.  When a couple is on the same page when they have a baby, mom’s happier, dad’s happier and their baby gets a stronger family.  All good!
We hope to foster a constructive discussion between moms and dads on how to work together once that baby comes home.

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