Category Archives: Culture

How To Be More Productive at Work During the Holiday Season

do more motivational quote on a TV

Shopping lists, capturing the perfect holiday card photo, putting up the decorations, last minute Q4 projects and ending the year with a fiscal bang. The fourth quarter can be a chaotic time of year, making it difficult to stay focused on work and negatively impacting productivity.

Thanks to my Emergenetics Profile I’ve discovered that my personality type gravitates towards structure. So what’s a structure lover supposed to do in the ever-changing Q4 climate? Based on my experience balancing multiple clients and projects, here are four tips that have dramatically increased my ability to stay focused regardless of the season. I hope they ho-ho-help you stay more productive during this holiday season too!

1. Write a To Do List and Revisit it Throughout the Day

You’ve probably heard that at the end of each day you should write a to-do list for the next day — this is 100 percent true! But the key is to revisit that to-do list first thing in your day. Don’t check Slack. Don’t check your email. Check in with your to-do list. This will help you set the intention for your day and act as the North Star that keeps you on track.

2. Eat the Frog First

Samuel Langhorne Clemens, more commonly known as Mark Twain, brilliantly authored 28 separate book releases. (Side note: I’m pretty sure we would have been besties if we had been born in the same era). During his writing career, he learned a thing or two about staying productive. His recommendation?  

“If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And If it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.”

When you’re creating that to-do list, identify which 1-3 items are your “frogs.” What do you have to complete today? Tackle the toughest one first thing in your day to avoid the “I don’t know how to start this project blues.” This will give you the momentum to stay productive for the rest of the day!

3. Practice the OHIO Method

OHIO which stands for Only Handle It Once is the most recent productivity method I’ve been practicing, thanks to Shine. The idea is to tackle and complete those smaller one-off projects as they come up. Instead of overthinking that email response or sending a delayed text message, complete them in the moment. This method has taught me a few things: most things don’t take as long as I tell myself they will and mental to-dos haunt you. The things that aren’t “big enough” to put on the to-do list are the things that take up the most mental space. By completing them in the moment, I have more energy to dedicate to my “frogs.”

4. Tell Time With Tomatoes

For those bigger projects, the ones that take more than 30 minutes, I highly recommend using the Pomodoro (Italian for “tomato”) Technique to help stay focused.

The idea is to dedicate 25 minutes of undivided attention to a project (e.g. creating a digital advertising strategy for a client). At the end of the 25 minutes, take a 5-minute break. After the break jump back into 25 minutes of dedicated project work, then take another 5-minute break. Continue this cycle three to four times. At the end of the fourth cycle, take a 15-minute break, instead of a 5-minute break. Repeat this time management technique as needed until the project is finished. My personal favorite Pomodoro timer is Tomato Timers. Their graphics are cute and the timer sounds like happy rainfall.     

How do you stay focused during the holiday season? Do you have a productivity method that you love? Please share it with us in the comments!

Olivia Ward is a Director of Digital Strategy at CenterTable, where she creates digital marketing strategies that make client dreams come true. She has more than 10 years of experience helping brands find and target their audience IRL and digitally.

Giving Back: 2017 Community Impact Report

Community Impact Report 2017Giving back is embedded in our culture and is a core value of GroundFloor Media and CenterTable.

Since our inception in 2001, we have been committed to investing in our community. This is reflected through cash contributions, pro bono public relations and digital marketing services, reduced billing rates for nonprofit clients, community service and paid time off for GroundFloor Media and CenterTable team members to volunteer with various community organizations and causes.

We typically aren’t braggadocios, but as a small business, we are very proud of our efforts as a company and the impact our employees make in the community. For the first time ever, we’ve compiled a Community Impact Report. It is a cumulative overview of our grants through our Get Grounded Foundation, financial matches through our Get Grounded Volunteer Program, Get Giving days of service, being named a Certified B Corporation, membership in giving organizations and participation on a variety of boards and committees.

As you can see from our annual report, all of us wholeheartedly believe that giving back in all shapes and forms strengthens our community, brings people together, provides us with valuable experience and insight and offers balance to our personal and professional lives.

Sabbatical Life Lessons

IMG_6790This summer, I had the amazing opportunity to take a four-week sabbatical following 10 years of employment at GroundFloor Media. For our part, team members are asked to take the time to regroup, recharge and reflect during their sabbaticals – with the ideal goal being that we come back refreshed and reenergized with insights to share with our team members that will ultimately help us all to live a more balanced, productive and abundant life.

It was, of course, amazing to have four weeks off – time to look up from my laptop and really be present in the world around me, spend treasured time with my family and friends, travel (to Hawaii!), and address long-ignored elements of my “other” jobs at home (stacks of mail, overflowing closets, etc.).

Read more after the jump…

The Value of Authenticity – Ft. Rebecca Black

Social media has given users the power to create extensions of themselves within a virtual environment, but at what cost? When the entire world is given a public platform, the lines between reality and perception become increasingly blurred. On episode 2 of Creating Conversations, we examine the darker side of Internet fame and the value of authenticity when dealing with a crisis.

Special Guest: Rebecca Black

Rebecca Black is a renowned artist and YouTuber who unwittingly became an Internet sensation when she was thirteen years old. She has since played an important role in shaping the conversation around cyberbullying and the viral nature of social media.

Read more after the jump…

10 of the Best Company Culture Videos, Part 1

We recently had the chance to tell a great brand story for our clients at Kirby-Smith Machinery. The end product is a video that will be used primarily as part of the company’s onboarding process. In the brainstorming process for that project, we sought out examples from other companies who have done a great job telling stories about their culture.

In the process, we picked up on some helpful storytelling tactics. And once we were done with the project, we learned even more about what works and what doesn’t when it comes to telling these kinds of stories.

This is the first in a two-part blog series that details some of the best company culture videos we found.

Warren Cat

This video was also intended to be used for onboarding, and it was one that our clients at Kirby-Smith identified as a great example of a brand story from their industry. It was immediately apparent why our clients appreciated this work, as the video begins and is inundated with strong original footage of the company’s heavy machinery operations, which are intensely visual. The other tactic that stood out was the voice of the piece. Yes, some of the lines might seem a little cheesy, but they resonated with their target audience.
Read more after the jump…

CenterTable Adds 2 New Digital Marketing Experts

The CenterTable team recently grew by two when Rachael Roark and Olivia Ward joined the team.

Rachael1_FA_centertable_jpgRachael Roark will focus on audience-based research to inform strategic integrated plans, SEO programs and content creation. She joins the agency from 90octane, where she was SEO manager supporting highly targeted, integrated marketing strategies for a number of B2B and B2C clients such as Oracle, Arrow Electronics and Whole Foods. A native of Colorado, Roark graduated from the University of Denver with a degree in photography and minors in business and marketing.

Olivia Ward combines a tactical approach to big-picture thinking with attention to detail, ensuring clients connect with their audiences through informed social strategies. Prior to joining CenterTable, Ward’s experience included working as a senior social media specialist at Volume Nine and as a digital marketing freelancer. She also served as a media buyeOlivia-1r for Lewis J. Advertising, successfully negotiating and buying traditional and digital media for four competitive markets. Originally from Wakeman, Ohio, Ward earned her bachelor’s degree in mass communication and international studies from North Dakota State University.

“Rachael and Olivia both bring unique, strategic experience to their roles that will ensure CenterTable remains at the forefront of industry trends,” said Ramonna Robinson, president and managing partner of GroundFloor Media and co-founder of CenterTable. “Their valuable insights will enable our team to continue delivering direct and measurable connections with our client audiences through the creative, integrated campaigns and strategic counsel for which we are well-known.”

To meet the other members of the CenterTable team or get to better get to know both agencies, visit Facebook, InstagramLinkedIn, or Twitter.

 

The Work-Life Blend – Feat. Andrew W.K.

Your hair grows at work, so go get it cut at work.

On this very first episode of Creating Conversations, we discuss the concept of a work-life blend as one of the core values of many modern workplaces, allowing team members to balance active lifestyles and a hectic work schedules.

Read more after the jump…

How Humility Contributes to a Successful Team

I’ve recently become a big fan of podcasts and among my favorites is WorkLife by Adam Grant. Adam is an organizational psychologist who studies how to “make work not suck” by sharing stories from companies and organizations he’s discovered to have unique approaches.

Humility is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less. - CS Lewis

Image by Ron Mader via Flickr.

If you’re a friend of GroundFloor Media (GFM) | CenterTable you know that we’re fortunate to be consistently named a best place to work, and you might think part of the formula for this honor is to fill our bench with all stars. That’s certainly what I thought, until I listened to Adam’s podcast about “The Problem With All Stars.”

Yikes! Did this blog post just take an unexpected turn? Absolutely not – and here’s why… Read more after the jump…

5 Tips For Successfully Working From Home

Woman working from home on the couch with a laptop

Photo credit: #WOCinTechChat

With GroundFloor Media and CenterTable offices under construction, our team has been temporarily relocated to a co-working space in downtown Denver called Thrive Workplace. I enjoy the atmosphere, having new food options just around the corner and the bout of nostalgia that carrying a backpack full of the day’s necessities brings. But with the added commute from the train and nomad-like environment of a shared workspace, I’ve often found it easier to hunker down at home to crank out my revolving door of to-do lists.

Thankfully, even before we were displaced, GFM and CenterTable’s culture has always been supportive of working remotely, a benefit for which I am truly grateful. This means I’m no stranger to this practice and have learned some tips and tricks over the years that have helped me make the most of working remotely.

Read more after the jump…

Overcoming Imposter Syndrome

You know that sinking feeling you get when a client comes to you with a question directly related to your field of expertise and you don’t know the answer?

Now, magnify that by a hundred if you’re already harboring some tendencies toward Imposter Syndrome.

Imposter Syndrome is defined as an inability to internalize your accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a “fraud” – and speaking from experience, it can feel paralyzing. It’s also pretty inconvenient, to say the least, in a job where clients turn to you for your expertise all day long. Read more after the jump…