GroundFloor Media (GFM) is truly incredible when it comes to encouraging employees to find a work/life blend. They absolutely walk the talk of allowing team members to work whenever and wherever – as long as they get their work done. That being said, as a working mom, I still find that “the juggle” is very real and, at times, overwhelming. I start strong at the beginning of every week, but am typically exhausted and dragging myself across the finish line by Friday. So, I recently embarked on a personal journey to try to find a way to remedy that – so that I can be better at both of my jobs (PR and mom).
We’ve got quite a few book worms at GroundFloor Media (GFM) and CenterTable. Then there are the rest of us who (thanks to #content) read a ton of blog posts, tweets and articles throughout the year but don’t get around to reading nearly as many books as we’d like.
One of the many great parts about the holidays is having a few days to dig in, potentially ditch the phone (gasp!), and read a good old-fashioned book or two. Along those lines, here are a couple that come highly recommended from our team, and that tie back to social media/digital strategy, business and company culture. If you’re looking for a few last minute holiday reading recommendations, we hope this helps. Read more after the jump…
I love great ideas! Especially the ones that start out small but then revolutionize an industry. In 2007, a like-minded group of individuals, including Pam Warhurst and Mary Clear, wanted to find a way in which everyone could help improve their own community. Their solution: They taught their local residents to take control of their community through gardening and eating.
“The answer was food,” said Warhurst in her TED Talk. “Everyone understands food. Food gets people talking; even better, it inspires people to take action.” They started with small herb gardens and community plots in a Northern England town called Todmorden. Then they planted corn in front of a police station, fruit trees on the sides of roads, vegetables in front of the senior center, and even planted gardens in the cemetery, where “things grow really well because the soil is really good!” Read more after the jump…
Facebook? More like Political-Argument-Book, am I right?
I’m told the best way to manage negativity is to focus on the positive, so here are five things that – as a person who works day in and day out on social platforms – I’m thankful for right now:
- The new iOS Update – Sure, they messed with the ordering of our email threads and I had to restore my touch-to-open home button functionality…but it’s all worth it when you can send GIF messages to your friends. Something I never knew I needed, but now I can’t imagine living without.
- The forthcoming link/tags on Instagram – They’re not available to everyone just yet, but even the thought of finally being able to link to a website within your Instagram posts literally makes me smile.
- My Mophie – I’m traveling as I write this, and this may sound trivial, but I’m truly thankful to not be sitting on an airport carpet next to what is shockingly the only power outlet within five gates.
- Free Wi-Fi – Sometimes it’s the obvious things. Take one minute and think about what we’d all do without Wi-Fi. We’d still have real time news to keep up with, endless work demands via email and hilarious dog videos to watch…but we wouldn’t be able to access any of it without an Ethernet connection or an all-too-often sketchy cellular signal. Thank you for that quick “Dogs are Amazing” video download, Wi-Fi.
- A Crazy Smart and Amazing Team – If you didn’t hear, GFM/CenterTable made the Top 5 of Outside Magazine’s Best Places to Work list for the fourth straight year. Work is infinitely more fulfilling, less stressful and straight up fantastically fun when you’re surrounded by great people and great clients.
Take a minute and practice some gratitude this week (and the next, and the following…), even if it only has to do with the percentage of battery you have left on your phone.
My favorite HR lesson came from a soon-to-be-retired lawyer at a Fortune 200 technology company. Tasked with giving an annual reminder to managers about appropriate behavior at our company’s various holiday parties, he decided to condense a 60-minute training down to about five minutes – and it largely centered around his “Two-drink Theorem.”
The theory held that sexual harassment allegations would overwhelmingly be the problem that arose from our company’s parties. And his rules of thumb were:
- Someone accused of sexual harassment who has consumed one drink or less will be determined not to have committed sexual harassment (although their behavior may still be loutish).
- Someone accused of sexual harassment who has consumed three or more drinks will be determined to have committed sexual harassment.
- It is the person who has consumed two drinks that causes the most problems when trying to assess guilt.
His primary takeaway? Only let people have a single drink at holiday parties. Or give them three so his legal staff could just immediately settle claims rather than wasting their time investigating them first. I think he was kidding about that part.
I was reminded of this theory recently when I saw that staffing firm Robert Half has released a
It’s no surprise to those of us who work here that GFM is the No. 1 place to work in America, according to OUTSIDE Magazine. From unlimited “trusted time off” to an annual teambuilding offsite with Outward Bound, not to mention an onsite treadmill desk (my favorite!) and Beer Club every Thursday afternoon, we’re truly lucky to be part of the GFM culture!
That’s why several of our team members have been with 15-year-old GFM for at least 10 years – a milestone that earns employees a four-week, paid sabbatical to take some time off to reflect, rejuvenate and reconnect. In August, I became the fourth GFM team member to enjoy sabbatical and I divided my time between home and two weeks visiting family in Nova Scotia, Canada. Whether you’re lucky enough to have an employer who offers a sabbatical program or whether you’re simply able to slip away from the office for a short vacation, I compiled a few reflections that I hope provide some inspiration to take with you on your trip – or to simply plug into everyday life! Read more after the jump…
Last week marked the fourth straight year that GroundFloor Media/CenterTable has sponsored The Wright – a Shark Tank–esque event focusing on Colorado companies who work in the outdoor/lifestyle industries, and love to give back to their respective communities. Companies are nominated, finalists are required to produce a short video about their business, a panel of judges narrows the list to three finalists at a live event and then questions those companies before selecting the winning contestant.
Some of these companies are big, some are small, some are new and some are more established. The common theme is that they’re all amazing Colorado-based companies who have great entrepreneurial spirit. It’s truly one of my favorite events each year – and one where everyone can learn a thing or two from the contestants. Here are a couple of things we took away from, or were reminded during the 2016 Wright: Read more after the jump…
When it comes to business, Denver is a bit of a ‘tweener. We’re not as big as New York, L.A. or Chicago, of course. But we also aren’t as big as Minneapolis, Dallas or Atlanta. When it comes to the business world, we continue to occupy a level beneath all of those cities.
But in many ways, we rank better than those larger cities. For example, we have teams in all four major sports leagues – the NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL. And our cultural facilities are better than you might expect in a city our size. The Denver Center for the Performing Arts, the Denver Art Museum, the Denver Botanic Gardens and the Denver Zoo all regularly present exhibits and programs that rival those in nearly all other major cities.
And that is no accident. Nearly 30 years ago, Denver-area voters stepped up and approved the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD), a taxing organization that ensured organizations both large and small would be funded with tax dollars to ensure they could provide the kind of cultural experiences that would enrich Denver and make it even more attractive to local residents and visitors alike.
This year, voters are being asked to approve Issue 4B to extend the SCFD another 12 years. The initiative would maintain a tax of one penny on every $10 spent to continue to fund our vibrant arts and culture facilities. This is one of the best investments Denver voters can make, and I hope everyone will vote to support Issue 4B.
The SCFD is one of the unique things that has contributed to Denver being one of the best places to live in the country, and we owe it to ourselves and our children to continue that innovative approach to supporting culture and the arts in our region.
Some of the newer folks at GroundFloor Media (GFM) recently took the Emergenetics assessment to learn about our thinking and behavioral preferences. Based on answers to a set of specific questions, Emergenetics evaluated our thinking preferences (structural, analytical, conceptual and social) and our behavioral preferences (expressiveness, assertiveness and flexibility).
It was absolutely no surprise to me that the majority of my thinking preference falls under the structural category (I’ve never met a list I don’t like). According to Emergenetics, this means that I am a “practical thinker that likes guidelines, is cautious of new ideas, is predictable and learns by doing.” No surprise to me, my least favorite thinking preference falls under the conceptual way of thinking. This means that my comfort zone does not lie in being “imaginative, intuitive about ideas, visionary, or learning by experimenting.”
When work gets busy and life gets busy (often at the same time), staying happy at work can be a challenge. Happiness in general is a very loaded term that can’t be addressed in one blog post. That said, I’m always eager to learn what other people do to achieve happiness in the work place.
One aspect of work that can sometimes be overwhelming is very simple: Mondays. Monday can be daunting – it’s the start of the week and the start of a long to-do list. At a recent all-staff meeting, our team discussed strategies for preparing for a stress-free Monday. Here are some of the helpful tips our team shared:
- Be Schedule-Aware – Check the schedule to make sure you’re fully aware of all meetings scheduled for the early part of the week.
- Go to Bed Early – Get a good night sleep on Sunday night.
- Don’t Fall Behind – Stay up-to-date on e-mails throughout the weekend so they don’t pile-up. Don’t necessarily respond, but scan so there are no surprises on Monday morning.
- Keep it Free – Avoid post work plans on Monday night so you can rest after work.
- Write it Again – Rewrite your to-do list on a fresh piece of paper so you feel organized.