We love to support people and organizations in their pursuit of humanistic employee cultures where there is relentless passion for kindness, empathy, dignity, humility, trust, transparency, sharing, happiness, compassion and love.


Role Models


Whole Person Organizational Cultures©

Gerald R. Wagner, PhD.
May, 2016


This is a research study that you might like to participate with. The topic is exciting and timely. The content below is provided by Reina Bach and Victoria Mattingly.

— Jerry

Are Joyful Leaders Better Leaders?

Victoria Mattingly at Colorado State University and Reina Bach, Senior Partner at Denver-based JDV Leadership and Liberty Leadership Group, are partnering to discover the answer to this question through an empirical research study.

Reina Bach

During Phase I of the study, we successfully created a statistically valid measure of workplace “Joyfulness”. We are now beginning Phase II, which examines the correlation between leader ‘joyfulness level’ and meaningful organizational outcomes such as employee engagement, job satisfaction, organizational commitment and others.

We Ask for Your Help with Phase II: Data Collection: April 28 - May 27 2016

In order to make our research valid and beneficial to organizational leaders, we need help.

Click here to participate in this research, or copy/paste the below survey link in your browser: http://tiny.cc/CSUjoy.

Details of the Phase II Data Collection Process:

Click here to participate in this research, or copy/paste the below survey link in your browser: http://tiny.cc/CSUjoy.

Please share this information with any leaders and organizations you think might be willing to participate.

Thank you!

Questions? Contact Reina Bach or Victoria Mattingly:

Reina@JDVLeadership.com | 303.907.4640
Victoria.Mattingly@colostate.edu | 412.657.1269

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Every employee deserves to know about exceptional workplace culture practices. Culture STUDY CLUBS are the best way for them to learn. They use monthly issues of Culture ROLE MODELS for their “text”. CLUBS are groups of employees within organizations. CLUB members understand that there’s much they can learn from other organizations and from each other.

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Haiti Partners mission is, “to help Haitians change Haiti.” They do this by working with schools, churches and others to change Haiti’s leadership paradigm from top-down and authoritarian, to collaborative, respectful and loving. By expressing these values in every aspect of their work, they aim to cultivate a change maker culture that empowers Haitians with the skills, confidence and resources they need to improve their communities and their country.

The following image is Haiti Partner’s landing page for their values. If you click on the image it shows the five values that guide their work in Haiti and North America. It is so wonderful and I don’t want viewers to miss it.

Children’s Academy, Haiti

When the word “Haiti” appears, the phrase that typically follows is, “the poorest country in the western hemisphere.” It’s known as a lost cause, a broken country. Those who look beyond the media shorthand know that it’s a tough place to get things done. The World Bank ranked it 180th out of 189 countries in terms of the ease of doing business. Presently, Haiti’s in the midst of another political struggle. Election irregularities led to not having a new president in time to replace the outgoing one. Why does Haiti always seem so stuck?

Alex Myril, Haiti Partners Children’s Academy Coordinator

“The culture of love creates conditions for great collaboration in Haiti Partners. There’s this incredible can-do spirit among everyone involved which inspires people to work hard and with their whole selves.”

Haiti Partners believes that the reason Haiti always seems stuck lies in cultural tendencies stemming from the traumatic legacy of colonialism and slavery. When considering Haiti’s horrific history, where cruelty was the norm, leadership was ironfisted and disobedience was met with torture or death, is it any wonder that power is still so often abused today? Despite Haitians having freed themselves from generations of violence through the first successful slave revolution in 1804, the two centuries that followed were marred by classism, distrust and authoritarian leadership by both international and domestic forces. This was true in all of Haiti’s institutions: government, the military, the family, schools, churches, etc. Haiti Partners focuses its efforts on two of these most fundamental institutions--schools and churches.

Enel Angervil, Churches Program Coordinator

“Each person is valued in Haiti Partners and feels appreciated. Each person is encouraged to grow and develop personally and professionally. The loving and nurturing environment fosters engagement in the work, it becomes an extension of who you are.”

It is with this history in mind that Haiti Partners believes that how they do things is just as important as what they do. If they want to be successful at changing the violent, authoritarian aspects of Haitian culture, they have to approach their work with values that counter them: respect, collaboration, accountability, joy, compassion, empathy, love and others. For Haiti Partners, these values are mission-critical as they nurture a quiet revolution in Haiti’s education and leadership paradigm.

Over the years, Haiti Partners has partnered with other like-minded organizations to help them clarify their values and use methods that assure that they are on the right track. Barrett Values Centre guided them in the development of their organizational values. They regularly discuss WorldBlu’s principles of organizational democracy to consider how they are working together. Their discussion circle approach is an adaptation of Touchstones discussions, and their meetings and conferences use Open Space Technology. Church groups use Lectio Divina.

The previous paragraph has so much valuable information that I want you to go to the referenced sites and take a look. In addition to clicking on the above links you can click on these images:

Nisana Decimus, 1st Grade Teacher at Haiti Partners Children’s Academy

“Haiti Partners is about working in teams that are filled with fun and joy. It’s the mutual respect and spirit of learning and wanting to constantly improve that nurtures this. It makes you want to give your best self in the work you’re doing.”

Benaja Antoine, Program Coordinator

“In the education that Haiti Partners promotes, each person in the class or group has the right to speak … about anything they feel that needs to be addressed. People listen to each other, and they’re at ease to discuss any subject, even if the subject can be heated sometimes … And it’s always on this basis that decisions are made. It’s not just the person at the top that makes the decisions.”

The following photos are so wonderful I just couldn’t resist including them! Enjoy.

Preschooler, Julienne, takes a break from her classwork for a photo-op at the Childrens Academy
The future of the Children’s Academy is considered in a community-wide Open Space meeting
Children’s Academy staff and parents recycle paper as a part of a local paper making entrepreneurship pilot venture
Haiti Partners uses Reflection Circles to teach speaking, listening, and collaboration skills

Thanks for the wonderful story Haiti Partners and thanks for all you do. Very best wishes.

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If you’re a resident of one of the communities where CornerBank resides, you know exactly what their Random Acts of Kindness program is. Random Acts of Kindness is CornerBank’s way of showing the communities just how important they are to them through this simple, no strings attached, act of service. This is just one way CornerBank shows that they are committed to the communities where they do business.

CornerBank had one thought in mind when they started the Random Acts of Kindness program 14 years ago, in 2002, “We just want to put a smile on someone’s face today.” They just wanted to have some fun and see how many people they could make smile. The concept is simple: CornerBank periodically sends its employees throughout the communities where they do business to give away money to people, at random and with no strings attached.

Joyce was able to spread kindness by paying for a hair cut!

CornerBank partners with a local radio station, KSOK Radio, to advertise and help deliver Random Acts of Kindness. The Good Guys from the radio station join CornerBank employees every month (sometimes more than once in many of their locations) to surprise a handful of lucky people with a no strings attached surprise.

Gennifer and Jill gave out Random Acts of Kindness at the Arkansas City, Kansas, Arkalalah festival

Since this program was started, CornerBank has given away thousands of dollars at random in all of the communities where they serve through these simple acts of kindness. CornerBank may pay for gasoline, pick up the check at lunch or give out a free loaf of bread. The opportunities are endless! Being kind to those around you is simply the fabric that holds our communities together. Since CornerBank is a community bank, the Random Acts of Kindness program is their way of weaving their share of kindness into their communities.

During CornerBank’s time of sharing Random Acts of Kindness, they have found many people who were in need of such a generous gift. During one of the outings, CornerBank paid for purchases of customers at a local department store. One of the customers who received this random act had recently been diagnosed with a late stage of cancer for the third time and was in need of some positivity in his life. He was so appreciative and thankful.

Mark stopped at Winfield’s downtown hardware shop and bought supplies for a camper stove

On another outing, a couple was in town for a well known bluegrass music festival their camper stove had stopped working. CornerBank helped purchased the parts needed to get their stove working again. They were incredibly grateful and thankful for this simple act of kindness. In July, the Kansas heat can be pretty overwhelming, so CornerBank will take drinks to employees of local businesses who work out in the heat.

CornerBank’s goal is simple, to make people smile, but when they can truly make a difference it makes Random Acts of Kindness that much sweeter. CornerBank employees always enjoy spreading kindness throughout the communities and look forward to the next time get to make someone smile.

CornerBank is a $285 million full-service community bank that is comprised of facilities and staff located across Kansas in Arkansas City, Douglass, Lawrence, Oxford, Wellington, Wichita and Winfield.

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A few weeks ago I saw an article called “New Company Hopes to Spread Kindness,” and was immediately intrigued. Reading further, I found that the business, The Doll Kind (TDK), was a labor of love by two moms on a mission to empower and inspire a generation of children to create a kinder world.

The mom duo creates huggable dolls with heart tokens, designed to share as a random act of kindness. For every doll sold, another is donated to a child less fortunate.

The company was created through an unlikely series of events. Co-founder Victoria Farmer snapped a quick photograph of her daughter, Anistyn. The girl had found herself in a bit of a predicament involving a five gallon bucket of white paint and five minutes alone. Farmer posted the photo to social media and the next day it had gone viral. The image sparked much debate and criticism.

Farmer family

While up one night nursing her newborn, Farmer happened upon a particularly judgmental and cruel string of comments that caught her by surprise. She stopped reading and gazed down at her baby, wondering what he would be like when he grew up. In that moment something struck her, something she always knew to be true, but was of particular importance in that very moment: people aren’t born mean.

With that fact in mind and a determination to create a better world for her two children, Farmer was moved to create a company, one that not only inspired children to maintain their innate sense of kindness, but enable them to share that kindness with others. She spoke with her friend and fellow mom Jackie Konczol, and less than a month later they founded The Doll Kind.

Both moms recognized that in every child’s hands lies the potential to do good and change the world, and that children’s toys can have a profound effect.

Konczol Family

“It is our hope that we can make the role of being parents a little easier by bringing greater value to playtime,” explained co-founder Jackie Konczol. “That’s why we founded TDK, to harness the power of toys for a good cause.”

In this effort, The Doll Kind has created dolls that come with matching heart tokens that say “share the love”. By sharing these hearts with others, children will experience the joy that comes from being kind and giving, and will then be inspired to be kind and give in other ways.

“It is these types of experiences that will stick with children and shape their character. We are truly excited to see the fun and creative ways children choose to share their heart tokens and positively affect the lives of others,” Farmer says. “The ripple effect will be immeasurable.”

The two moms note that empowering children to be the positive change needed in the world will build self-esteem, a sense of worth, and overall wellbeing. They believe that all children are good and that parents and role models must nurture and encourage this.

So how exactly does The Doll Kind process work?

First, customers choose a doll. The Doll Kind dolls are designed to be a child's best friend and companion. Each comes with six heart tokens, and more can be purchased on the web site.

The children can then leave the heart tokens with anyone they feel inspired to, in secret or not. The act of giving out the tokens will inspire children to do more good, and help them grow into charitable and compassionate adults.

Lastly, for each doll purchased, The Doll Kind donates a doll to a child less fortunate. Donation sites include orphanages, hospitals, shelters, and more throughout the United States and countries across the world.

Businesses for social good are sprouting up everywhere. With many benefiting those less fortunate through donations like food and clothing, some might ask, why dolls? Farmer and Konczol are quick to respond. “In truth, it can make ALL the difference. We are passionate in our belief that kindness is as essential as food and water.”

The co-founders explain that while children in orphanages, shelters, and hospitals are fortunate to be provided with their most basic necessities, having a doll, a companion, is sometimes seen as a luxury. The fact is, toys can nurture a child’s development and lift his or her spirits in incredible ways. It’s a universal truth that kids everywhere love to learn, explore, create, and play.

While TDK dolls serve as a friend and companion to children, Farmer and Konczol are even more passionate about what the dolls stand for, and the message they teach children everywhere, regardless of background or circumstance. “We want children around the world and from every walk of life to understand that no matter how much or how little one may have, we can all be kind.”

Victoria and Jackie admit that it will take more than a doll and some heart tokens to change the world. They do believe however, that when given to an eager child by parents willing to instill positive values, The Doll Kind will provide a much-needed catalyst for creating a better, kinder world.

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Have you ever gotten ice cream from your credit union’s one of a kind ice cream truck? Or played a game of bags in a bank lobby with your favorite teller? How about celebrated “Talk Like a Pirate Day” while depositing money into your checking account? If your answer is no to all of the above questions, than you’ve clearly never experienced the culture at Vibrant Credit Union.

Walking into any of its branches or even just visiting the company’s Facebook you’ll notice one thing right away-- this isn’t your typical Credit Union. That’s how Vibrant likes it. The company takes its tagline “Banking Reimagined” to heart. In an industry described as sometimes stuffy, sometimes boring, Vibrant is anything but. The team believes that banking doesn’t have to be boring, and that means working at a credit union doesn’t have to be, either.

For each employee that kissed the alpaca Vibrant donated $10 to March of Dimes

As a financial institution, the employees at Vibrant know they have a serious job … but that doesn’t mean they have to take themselves seriously. Employees start each day out with a motivational moment. That could be anything from a game of bags to Just Dance to a llama kissing booth or even just chatting about their weekend- the only rule is no shop talk. It’s not out of the ordinary to have Vibrant’s President or CXO stop by an employee’s desk just to check in or (probably more frequently), to play a prank. They truly believe that creating a happy work environment will translate into better business.

Creating better experiences is what Vibrant is all about. This means staying connected with members and employees. Sometimes it translates into giving out free ferris wheel rides at the local ball diamond or free admission at a local haunted house, or handing out free ice cream from a custom truck. It’s all about the experience.

In order to create awesome community experiences, Vibrant starts with the employees and the culture. The leadership at Vibrant takes an active interest in the life of employees and believe in making their team the top priority. By focusing on their people, members benefit.

Employee Appreciation Dinner. CEO Matt McCombs and CXO Steve Ducey in on the photobooth

To put it simply, Vibrant believes happy, healthy employees work better. Happiness is good for business.

A teller or front line staff member is more likely to engage with members, provide amazing service, and care more about their members’ experience if he or she is happy. And part of being happy is feeling healthy. The goal is to have employees come into work in tip top shape so they can in turn provide an amazing experience to members.

Impromptu bag tournaments in and right outside of branches

According to an internal survey Vibrant conducted, 74% of Vibrant employees see themselves working at Vibrant for their entire career. What makes this number really interesting is that 85% of Vibrant’s workforce is under the age of 40. The employees genuinely like coming to work every day and are in it for the long haul.

Vibrant continues to be one of the fastest growing consumer lending, real estate lending and branch locations organizations in the Financial Services Industry. How do they do it? That’s easy-- again, it’s that culture dedicated to member service through a surprisingly different experience.

24/7 corporate gym

To best provide employees the opportunity to be happy and healthy the credit union recently added a 24 hour gym to its corporate center. All employees have access and are welcome to workout before work, after work or during their lunch. It’s equipped with dumbbells, treadmills, ellipticals, bikes, and a rowing machine, basically anything necessary for a good workout.

Not only does working out make employees healthier, it also creates camaraderie. Many times employees can be found working out in a group-- it’s a whole new way employees get to know each other rather than through the normal work day experience. New friendships are formed and employees actually talk to each other about real things.

Another fun fact Vibrant found in an internal survey is that 73% of their employees feel like they have a best friend at work. Employees genuinely like being around each other.

Through this unique approach Vibrant is experiencing record growth in overall member relationships. In the last quarter new member growth was 7.5%. In December alone, new member growth reached double digits! Vibrant ranks in the top 8% in the country for overall return on member value and the top 10% for depth of wallet. The company’s average services per households is more than twice the average credit union.

By focusing on employees’ health and happiness Vibrant has been recognized as a true partner to its communities and membership. The company has proven there is a better way to bank. Vibrant ranked in the top 5 for Credit Union Journal’s “2016 Best Credit Unions to Work For” and ranked #1 for the 2016 Quad Cities best place for young professionals to work.

If this isn’t evidence that there is a link between employee wellbeing and happiness and workplace performance, was is?! Now you know why Vibrant employees just can’t help but smile.

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Bolse Idaho

Any advertising agency’s culture is as unique as the mix of personalities that make up its team. At Drake Cooper — a Boise, Idaho, and Seattle, Washington-based advertising agency — a healthy and vibrant culture is built upon a rambunctious crew of dreamers, artists, strategists, data hounds, foodies, bloggers, designers, sports enthusiasts, runners, photographers, and travel junkies who value the work-life balance. The team flourishes at the crossroads of ambition and trust.

Beyond a collection of titles and roles, the team members at Drake Cooper trust one another both personally and professionally. Gone are the solitary, Don Draper ad days where writers and creatives were barricaded behind an office door with a pack of smokes and a liquor cabinet. At Drake Cooper, employees focus on building team loyalty and shared respect with an open-door policy, creative and strategy brainstorming sessions, and team-derived annual goals.

Cultivating Creativity

Jamie Cooper

“No job here is small, and the big-hearted and enthusiastic find a home among us,” says Jamie Cooper, the CEO of Drake Cooper. “We agree to collectively strive to make this the best place we’ve ever worked and to create jobs as big as our spirits. We build brands for the ambitious because we ourselves are ambitious.”

Being unorthodox, risky, and different might sound scary for many agencies or organizations. At Drake Cooper, the unique is praised, innovative ideas are revered and passionately explored, and unconventional thinking is actively cultivated. This is an agency unconfined by industry norms and rules, and team members make a living by being uncommon.

Ambition, when combined with the company’s purpose of making a difference and inspiring change, has created a dynamic culture at Drake Cooper. The team of creative masterminds live by a shared internal ideology - one that shapes the agency’s culture and everything it does. Here are eight ways that the agency cultivates creativity and fosters an innovative atmosphere:

1. Take Advantage of Past Successes and Failures

Creativity, by its very nature, requires risk. This can be scary for organizations and employees but, at Drake Cooper, employees aren’t afraid of failure. Instead, risks are planned for and evaluated after the fact so that employees can learn from every experience and decision. Did a campaign not work perfectly, but the sticking point was identified? Perfect. The Drake Cooper team will band together to tweak the strategy and get it right during the next iteration. By embracing revision in a supportive way, team members are awarded a unique opportunity to learn and craft new skills.

2. Shared Goals

In addition to daily iteration, Drake Cooper also hosts annual company retreats where the agency closes its doors for a day and staffers meet off-site to reflect on the previous year’s work. The 2016 retreat was filled with passionate conversation, forward-thinking problem solving, lots of shenanigans and team-building. Employees discussed last year’s successes, failures, milestones, and passion projects. The retreat was an opportunity for the agency to get away from the hustle and bustle of the hectic ad world and for employees to connect with one another on a more personal level while planning and dreaming about the year ahead.

John Drake

"Collaboration among this team of people is incredible,” says John Drake, VP of Brand Planning. “The different angles that everyone approaches a challenge with are so creative and smart--it makes the whole experience of planning exciting. To have everyone in one room for a day, without any deadlines or deliverables is a very important thing for us to do."

3. Develop Multiple Solutions

The digital, creative, and media teams understand that there are multiple solutions and approaches to solving client problems, so the agency seeks to explore every possible avenue for resolving an issue before offering their best recommendations.

Brad Weigle

"Our job is to solve business problems for our clients with creativity,” says Brad Weigle, Digital Director. “For us, that can come in the form of a TV spot, a website, or something else entirely. Each of us gets to come into work every day and work with equally ambitious and talented people to navigate to the best possible outcome that will improve sales for our clients."

4. Build Active Lives Outside of Work

Being a part of the advertising world requires being up-to-date on market, industry, and media trends, working against often-aggressive deadlines, and having a 24-7 commitment to clients. Advertising also requires staffers to immerse themselves in their day job which often stretches well after hours. To avoid drained creative juices and unsatisfied employees, the team at Drake Cooper is encouraged to pursue the activities they love outside of work. They spend their free time skiing, hiking, backpacking, playing sports, cooking, spending time with loved ones, volunteering, and traveling, which helps them maintain an exceptional work-life balance.

5. Encourage Cross-Disciplinary Participation

Every opinion matters at Drake Cooper. Team members in the agency believe that a good idea can come from anyone, at any time. This open and collaborative environment results in employees that always feel empowered to ask questions, teams that bring others in for diverse opinions, and an organization that can quickly adapt to change. Staffers know that their contributions are respected, so they’re always inspired and supported to push themselves to develop new skills and assume leadership roles.

6. Never Stop Learning

At Drake Cooper, everyone is an expert in one or more areas, but that's not what makes staffers excel. What elevates this group above the rest is their willingness to admit when they don’t have all the answers. This allows team members to ask for guidance when they need it, speak openly about personal and project challenges, and seek training and other educational opportunities whenever possible. Without these traditional barriers to learning, there is no limit to what the team can explore and master.

7. Cultivate Passion

Enthusiasm and inventiveness are infused into every facet of Drake Cooper’s company culture. Monthly educational luncheons, annual soup-offs, foosball tournaments, impromptu dance parties, weekly ‘Share the Love’ company gatherings where staffers share current work and accomplishments, and charity races are all part of what give Drake Cooper its colorful personality.

In addition to their work hard - play hard mentality, Drake Cooper hosts a Dream Big program in order to give back to the community. As part of the program, the company donates its marketing services to a chosen 501(c)3 organization for one year. Staffers volunteer to develop and implement strategies and provide support wherever possible for the nonprofit organization. Past nonprofits that have been involved in the program are the Learning Lab, the Boise Bicycle Project, and the Boise Rescue Mission.

Learning Lab
Boise Bicycle Project
Boise Rescue Mission

8. Play Where You Work

Drake Cooper’s office can be described as ‘Unbelievably Creative’ followed by ‘What the Hell?’ The company’s office spaces are nothing short of inspirational. The open seating plan in its Northwest offices shows off custom lighting and intricate woodworking masterpieces.

Downstairs in the Boise office, walls are covered with unique and vibrant murals painted by members of the creative team, and the Think Tank meeting rooms are separated by colorful strip doors. Rolling whiteboards and flat screen TV’s for impromptu brainstorming sessions are situated throughout the office, making collaboration fun and convenient.

The agency’s Boise office also features a homey upstairs conference room with brick walls reminiscent of the old downtown, and the downstairs space boasts raw wood beams, industrial sized personal lockers, and chalkboards for jotting down ideas that run the length of the hallways.

The inspiring environment tremendously aids the creative process and team dynamics by providing staffers with quiet work areas, a gaming area to blow off steam, and seating groupings for small meetings. There’s something special about the way this space is designed that helps stir the creative juices. Drake Cooper’s Northwest offices are intended to accommodate every creative need required by its artistic workforce.

Long Live the Ambitious!

Drake Cooper builds brands for the ambitious through a company made up of driven staffers. The team loves working with organizations and individuals who push themselves and who show ambition in their lives and work.

Kelsey painting downstairs - long live the ambitious!

Many define culture as being made up of trust retreats, dogs at work, yoga at lunch, weekly happy hours, and napping pods. While these things may be fun or enticing, Jamie Cooper, Drake Cooper’s CEO, believes these perks do not define a culture - rather, they are benefits of a healthy culture. Drake Cooper thrives through utilizing ways of working that allow teams to collaborate, interact, inspire and support each other.

This mindset has certainly earned Drake Cooper recognition as being one of the best places to work in the nation by Outside Magazine for four years in a row. Indeed, it is an agency for and by the ambitious.

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As you must know by now, I am greatly interested in branding workplace spirit. I read an article called “Becoming a talent-magnet organization” by Arinya Talerngsri with the APMGroup in Thailand. I loved the title and article so I asked if she would do a piece for us. She said yes and she did. Thanks Arinya.

Ms. Arinya Talerngsri is Group Managing Director at APMGroup

If we take a look at the current workforce situation, it’s clear that an enormous power shift has already begun. This change will present your organization with a potentially terminal threat: loss of talent. The global war on talent acquisition is becoming a real threat to organizations of any size - from small enterprises to gigantic multinational firms; and in all industries – from agriculture to manufacturing, across the globe.

Baby boomers are being lost through retirement and by 2020, Generation Y a.k.a. the Millennials (people born between 1980 and 2000) will comprise one third of the workforce. This should be enough of a reason for any organization to start working on a strategy to attract and integrate Gen Y talent before it is too late.

Each generation has its own characteristics – from their diverse working approaches to different daily lifestyle preferences — and winning them over means HR practitioners and high-level executives alike need to unlearn their established methods of luring potential employees. Instead, leaders need to develop new strategies to tap the multi-generational workforce landscape and prevent top employees from slipping away to the competition.

Generally speaking, employees today are much more concerned about whether or not they are a good fit for their workplace culture and expect their leaders to be more mindful of their needs. In other words, more and more are keen on being themselves and being comfortable to co-exist in the workplace environment; thus, they need to make sure they know enough about the culture of the company before applying.

What better way to show potential employees about company culture than through workplace branding? Just as companies look for outstanding employees, employees also look for outstanding companies, and a strong brand can communicate that message.

Simply put, workplace branding – similar to the development of a customer brand — markets what a company has to offer to potential and even existing employees.

Here are a few tips that help companies attract and retain the right people:

Tip 1: Segment target groups of candidates carefully. Learn about the differences across generations in terms of demographics, values, expectations and occupational preferences.

Tip 2: Articulate the workplace brand in a way that appeals to each target group and, at the same time, project a core identity as an organization. This includes adjusting policies, systems and technologies to deliver those promises.

Tip 3: Leverage all communication channels as selling mediums. Use corporate websites and social media channels to ‘sell’ the employment brand and create groups of ‘followers’. Implement them to reinvent the candidate experience and expand the market.

Many people are managing their careers and looking to advance by searching for jobs that truly fulfill their passions, stimulate their desires and ignite their potential. This offers ample opportunity for companies to easily promote themselves through technology. Low-cost video and other easy, interactive efforts can provide unique opportunities to improve and review the candidate experience in ways that remove cost and geographic constraints.

Tip 4: Use a more strategic approach to adopting social media. Be more proactive in using social media to share inside stories that highlight the company's strengths and build a more authentic and engaging employer brand and reputation. People are no longer seeking jobs without Googling the company and looking for answers in forums and chatrooms so businesses need to incorporate the right recruiting and attracting strategies on all of these platforms.

Also, social media can draw in influencers and that can potentially attract other top employees — just like when marketers use celebrities to endorse products. Leverage talents who are seen as ‘cool’ or can create a ‘wow’ effect for potential target candidates and other employees. Their presence and choice to stay with the organization can send strong positive messages, with or without them saying anything.

Moreover, social media has completely and utterly revolutionized the recruitment process, affecting not just how potential candidates are sourced but how they look for and apply to jobs. Make the most of the available tools social media has to offer – from making sense of big data through LinkedIn to visually portraying corporate culture through Youtube.

As the workforce shifts towards the social media generation, it’s important to have a brand that demonstrates the company’s dedication to keeping up with the rapid rate of changes.

Nowadays, many new hires are referred through online media and companies with a below par online presence won’t be getting top talent or interest from potential employees.

Since skilled talent can undoubtedly differentiate between great and good companies, workplace branding is obligatory. It can create bonds that help retain critical talent while attracting the future talent needed to drive an organization forward in the broader marketplace. Do it right. Becoming a talent-magnet organization means saving both money and time.

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I was watching a live stream from the Wisdom 2.0 conference and Dr. Marc Brackett from Yale University was giving a presentation about their Emotion Revolution program. Their work has been with schools and students. Next research will be with an Emotion Revolution in workplaces!

Click on the above image to see the brochure. You will be impressed. Then also look at inspired.facebook.com for their partnership with Facebook.

"The Center seeks to answer basic scientific questions about the roles emotions play in ordinary contexts, such as school and work. This research area also explores the intersection of creativity and emotional intelligence with regard to coping, persistence, academic and workplace success, and general mental health."

"Using both basic and applied science techniques, researchers at the Center are documenting the everyday effects of emotions. They study these effects on thinking and behaving (e.g., teachers’ grading practices), work (e.g., teachers’ burnout and job satisfaction), and relationships (e.g., teachers’ relationships with students). Studies also examine the role of emotions in creativity as well as in health and well-being (e.g., students’ anxiety and depression).”

The Center collected data from 22,000 high schoolers how they currently feel and how they want to feel in school, and the possible reasons for these emotions. Approximately 75% of the words the students used were negative. Just 23% were positive. Furthermore, the top three emotions the students reported were tired (used by 39% of the respondents), stressed (29%), and bored (26%). In contrast, the top three emotions students said they want to feel in school are happy, excited, and energized.

Looks pretty similar to what employees would say about their jobs.

I was surely intrigued about Dr. Brackett’s mentioning starting the Emotion Revolution in Workplaces in the video I saw. So I contacted Dr. Brackett for information. This is what he sent to me.

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I’m not going to summarize this story. You can read it yourself. SXSW means South by Southwest that is held in Austin. It is a huge event that combines music, film, and technology. Austin, the perfect place for this. I was in Austin and had friends that were thinking about an idea that is now SXSW. Wow what an amazing event it turned out to be.

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Imagine a workplace where you can show up fully as yourself...

Imagine businesses creating the society you want to live in...

Imagine the economy being a protective force for our planet...

If you said yes to these, join the movement for change at the Awake Business Conference, Austin Convention Center, Austin, Texas, March 30 to April 2, 2017.

The Awake Business Conference takes the mindfulness revolution to the next level by joining with the movement of visionary companies who want to harness the power of business to create a better world. It is a celebration of the best that humanity’s entrepreneurial spirit has to offer. Together we can change the world.

In the past decade or so a new paradigm of business is emerging that has expressed itself in many forms and is known by many names, including Shared Value, Triple Bottom Line, Conscious Capitalism, and the Benefit Corporation Movement. Although each of these movements has some unique quality that distinguishes them from the others, they all share common features. The common features include:

The Awake Business Conference offers a rich variety of workshops and discussion panels that break the ideals of the new business paradigm into practical real-world tools that can be implemented right away. These breakout sessions fall into six general categories:

For more information see http://awakebusiness.org/. To apply to present a “break-out session” see http://awakebusiness.org/speaker-form/. To be a sponsor see http://awakebusiness.org/sponsors/.

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I received an invitation to watch the livestream broadcast of the Dali Llama’s visit to the Center for Healthy Minds at the University of Wisconsin on 3/9/16. On the time line at the bottom of the broadcast move to 01.35.40 to watch his presentation. Watch when you have about 25 minutes of interrupted time. You will be pleased you did.

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The title is from an article in the December issue of Fortune. (link for December issue is http://fortune.com/2015/12/15/key-business-trends-2016/) If case you missed it, I thought you would like to see it.

Retire the term “manager”:

Flatten your organization in 2016 and shift your managers into the role of coach. A coach who works individually with 40 employees for one hour a week each will get far better results than most traditional managers overseeing eight to 10 employees.

Embrace “scale-up” ecosystems:

With incubators abounding, support for startups is robust in most major cities around the world. But to really move the needle on jobs and innovation, more governments and private-sector institutions are pivoting into building ecosystems to support “scale-ups” to grow existing firms to $1 billion in revenue. Now is the time to remind your local government leaders that the real economic engines of our economy need some attention

Open the books on health care costs:

One-third of employers expect the greatest cost increase from Affordable Care Act compliance to take place in 2016, when companies with 50 to 99 employees must start providing insurance, a recent survey found. More are shifting to cheaper, high-deductible plans as a result. If you still invest in a comprehensive health plan, start educating your employees about exactly what this valuable form of compensation really costs your company—and what it’s worth to them in pretax dollars. It will give you an edge over rivals who have pared such benefits.

Benefit from the freelance economy:

No matter how you feel about Uber, there’s no denying that relationships between companies and talent have become more fluid. With nearly half the workforce expected to be freelance by 2020, now is the time to learn how to tap into this vital talent pool more effectively. Showing your leadership team how to organize and inspire free agents who don’t necessarily depend on your firm for a paycheck every week will make your company more agile.

Be like a “B Corp”:

Most growth companies will never be certified as a benefit corporation—a rigorous process that measures factors such as their environmental and social record. But with even the giant corporation Unilever publicly discussing becoming one, smart leaders should turn B Corp guidelines into a checklist to drive their business in 2016 and beyond. Great employees want to work for companies that stand for more than just profit, so it will give you a leg up in the talent wars. And it’s likely to win you more of the kind of customers you want to keep too.

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These predictions appear in the January 8, 2016, Forbes Leadership.

  1. Companies will continue to blame Millennials for employee churn when in fact age has nothing to do with why employee turnover is on the rise.
  2. Organizations will invest more in the watering of the office plants than they will on nurturing and growing talent.
  3. Employees will continue to turn a deaf ear to corporate speak and will remain disengaged until leaders stop talking profits and start talking purpose.
  4. More workers will flee their employers as the economy continues to prosper.
  5. Magnetic leaders will have no problems attracting talent.
  6. There will be more part-time jobs, as companies do whatever it takes to fill vacancies with the right people.
  7. There will be more part-time jobs, as companies do whatever it takes to fill vacancies with the right people.
  8. Baby Boomers will not retire in droves, as they continue to remain fit for duty. Companies will need to adjust their succession plans accordingly.
  9. Those that invest in the development of their people will significantly out perform those who don’t. What are you waiting for? Start investing.
  10. Employees will continue to reject those organizations where success is measured based on face time and not results.
  11. Starting salaries will rise, as more companies will be pulling from a smaller talent pool that is in hot demand.
  12. Companies will toss out college degree requirements in favor of hiring those with potential and a proven track record.
  13. Annual performance reviews will be tossed in the trash as companies move towards real-time continuous feedback.
  14. Disappointed workers will continue to flood sites like Glassdoor, to tell their truth to those who will listen.
  15. Wearables in the workplace will create havoc as organizations struggle with the right to bear a computer on one’s body and the right for workplace privacy.
  16. Employee engagement will be buried once and for all and will be replaced by a movement called Talent Magnetism.
  17. Leaders will have to reapply for their jobs every two years. Their subordinates will decide whether or not they retain their post.
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The photos show Omaha Culture AMBASSADOR’s participating in the Conversation café. The event was hosted at Mutual of Omaha by Beth Schmidt and Tracie Malesa with 36 persons registered to attend.

Participants worked in groups of two to five at a table for a 10-minute discussion on a topic assigned to that table. After 10 minutes, they were asked to each move to a new table to discuss a new topic. After four rounds, the group came together to share their collective insights. The topics were: The effects of emotions in the workplace, building and maintaining pride, implementing a flat system, re-recruiting staff, and ideas to implement today. Attendees wrote ideas and doodled on butcher paper covering the tables. The diversity of thought provided many different perspectives on each topic. But most of all, the group had an opportunity to meet and talk to others in the group, making it a rich networking activity It was absolutely delightful watching the amazing participation and hearing occasional bursts of laughter, leading me to believe that most, if not all, enjoyed the comradery!

Key take aways:

What are the Effects of Emotions in the workplace – and how to improve?

How do you Build and Maintain Pride in the Workplace?

How do you Implement a Flat System where all feel empowered?

How do you Re-recruit Staff to re-engage?

Ideas to Implement Today to improve culture:

Notes from the table top sheets:

How to Build and Maintain Pride

How to Implement a Flat System Where All Feel Empowered

How to Re-recruit Staff to Re-engage

What are the effects of Emotions in the Workplace – and how to improve?

Ideas to Implement Today to Improve Culture

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Please Let Us Know Who you Suggest as Role Models

At the Institute for Inspired Organizational Cultures recognizing individuals and organizations that support the advancement of Whole Person Organizational Cultures. This is a community project so please help. We want to especially feature businesses who are not already in the high profile limelight.

Please send Jerry a note about individuals or organizations that you think might be good candidates to include. His email address is jerry.wagner.ioc@gmail.com.

Click here to watch videos of our curriculum faculty. Our complete curriculum with videos and suggested reading materials are free for all email addresses ending in .edu and also for faith based and/or charitable non-profit organizations with .org email. For others the fee is only $79 per year.

Gerald R. Wagner, PhD.

CEO, The Institute of Inspired Organizational Cultures.