Blog

  • Building a Zombie-Free Workplace

    Halloween is right around the corner, so it’s the perfect time to ask the question: “How scary is your workplace?” So gather your team around the office campfire, break out the marshmallows, and consider the following…

    1. Do you work in a culture where people are afraid to be themselves? A workplace where everyone is encouraged to talk like zombies and wear professional masks all day that hide their true character? Inspiring workplaces excel at creating a relaxed atmosphere where people feel like they can bring their authentic selves to work every day.

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  • Plunging Into a More Inspiring Workplace Culture

    If you want your employees to, and pardon the expression, give a crap about your workplace, then you need to build a culture that values and recognizes the great work they do. And that’s exactly how Alpine Tubular Management and Supply, a Calgary-based company, has built a thriving business. Here’s just a few things they do to build an inspiring culture:

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  • Celebration, Recognition at Work Drives Results

    At the end of the credits for the Pixar movie Monster Inc. (where, incidentally, the monsters discover the joy of laughter), 49 names appear below the heading Production Babies. These are the 49 babies that were born to Pixar employees during the making of Monsters Inc., and it’s Pixar’s way of celebrating the new additions to their family.

    As I remind you on a regular basis, we all need to be doing a better job at recognizing the people around us and celebrating success. Something in the neighborhood of a gazillion studies have confirmed that everyone wants more recognition at work, everyone appreciates being appreciated, and those companies that do a better job at recognizing employees and celebrating realize higher profits, higher employee retention rates, and improved customer service scores. You need to celebrate the obvious stuff, but here’s a few ideas for some offbeat reasons to celebrate and recognize people:

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  • You Look Fabulous! No, I’m Serious!

    October is official Sarcastic Awareness Month, which raises the question, “How sarcastic aware is your workplace?” A few non-sarcastic thoughts on the matter…

    1. Although an Israeli research team has created an Algorithm for Sarcasm Identification software program (sounds like something Sheldon from “The Big Bang Theory” could use) that which can detect sarcastic sentences in online product reviews with an astoundingly good 77 percent precision, we humans are still very poor at detecting sarcasm in written correspondence. Although, for example, respondents thought they were right 90% of the time, a study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found readers only have a 50/50 shot at correctly identifying the tone of an email.

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  • Boost Employee Health to Boost Your Bottom Line – Guest Post

    Successful companies recognize that employees are a business’ number one asset. Happy and healthy employees are productive employees. From designing the work space with ergonomic office equipment to developing onsite recreation spaces, here are just a few ways to ensure your employees are happy, healthy and productive.

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  • Make Your Customers the Star Attraction

    A hotel in California offered up a promotion wherein the first guest each day to sing a preselected song received a free room upgrade. The performances were videotaped and uploaded on YouTube, and a grand prize awarded to the best performance of the summer. It was an outrageous idea that worked fabulously for the hotel. So what are you doing to include your customers in the fun and to actually get them involved in some way? Here are a few ways companies are including their customers (and keep in mind, everyone has customers, your customers might just be sitting down the hallway):

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  • Humor as a Social Branding Tool

    The annual Shorty Awards honor personalities, companies, and brands that have created highly successful social media campaigns. One finalist, Zzzquil, demonstrated just how effective a platform such as Twitter can be if done correctly. After discovering people were already talking about their product on social media — especially at night when insomnia struck — they decided to dive in with a Twitter account that focused on bringing humor and warmth to a topic that was typically handled in a sterile, medicinal way. The results: more than 16 million online impressions.

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  • Personalize Your Employee Recognition for Higher Job Satisfaction: Guest Blog

    Money is tight these days. As the head-honcho, you are always looking for ways to cut costs. But, one word of advice: don’t scrimp on rewarding your employees for a job well done.

    You may already be rewarding all of your employees by giving them great benefits, paying for mileage for the commute to work or giving them a pay raise. But, you don’t want to forget to reward their individual performance, too. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to reward employees either. Just showing them that you recognize and appreciate their hard work can be enough. Here are just a few ideas:

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  • Be the Kind of Employee Everyone Wants to Work With

    Here are 11 simple ways to make a positive impression with your teammates and create a better workplace:

    1. Be sweet – have candy readily available. Several studies (albeit, all conducted by candy companies) suggest that having a candy dish on your desk makes you more likable, more attractive, and more likely to hear interesting news and gossip!

    2. Add a humorous quote to the bottom of your e-mail signature file and change it every day, or at least every week, so people look forward to seeing what the new quote is.

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  • A Kickass Approach to Building a Great Culture

    You have to admire a company that never does things half ass, whose entrepreneurial spirit is truly kickass, and whose marketing efforts occasionally have a smartass quality about them. These are the traits that not only flavor their culture, but also reflect the flavor of three of Kicking Horse Coffee’s blends: Kick Ass dark roast, Smart Ass medium roast, and Half Ass (with, naturally, half the caffeine).

    The humble beginnings of Kicking Horse Coffee Co. Ltd. is reminiscent of Apple’s legendary beginning – the founders of Kicking Horse Coffee, Elana Rosenfeld and Leo Johnson, began selling coffee out of their garage in Invermere, British Columbia, in 1996. And as with so many success stories, the upstart company began with a clear vision of what it wanted to be once it was fully brewed. Wildly successful, naturally, but not just successful for the sake of being successful. They wanted to do things differently.

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