As a marketer with a background in journalism, I love telling people stories with video.Continue reading “Cerkl partner shares his love in video testimonials”
According to the Social Security Administration, 80 million people are expected to retire in the next 20 years, taking a massive amount of skills and knowledge with them. It’s no surprise that researchers are expecting a worldwide shortage of highly skilled, college-educated employees.
Take a look at your staff. Is your leadership pipeline ready for this mass exodus? If it’s not, it’s time to start thinking about mentoring.
Mentors occupy a special place in the hearts and history of their mentees. It’s an exceptional relationship that provides lasting benefits for both parties. For me, a discussion about the value of mentoring wouldn’t be complete without acknowledging the impact my mentor had on my career and approach to leadership.
Debbie Bush, now FOX19 Vice President and General Manager, was my mentor; she was a beacon of light and direction to me at multiple points in my career. Debbie herself has enjoyed roles as both a mentor and a mentee.
Debbie spent most of her early career as a reporter in a Wichita, Kan., TV station. As she thought about the next step in her professional journey, she took a chance and told her station’s general manager what she wanted to do next. She expected him to laugh; instead, he helped her strategize and think through how to make her dreams come true. She says the fact that he believed in her gave her the confidence and grit to rise to their challenge and do excellent work.
As her career progressed from reporter to management as a news director and beyond, Debbie says she continued to learn and be influenced by mentors. Those relationships shaped her approach to work and leadership in innumerable ways.
Even at this stage in her career, Debbie engages the help of a mentor to guide her. “My boss, Jeff Rosser, is incredibly smart and pushes me to be better,” she said. “I would not be the GM I am without working with him.”
But mentorship isn’t all about high fives. Debbie said that sometimes the advice her mentors would give was tough love, intended to get her off the wrong track and back on the right one.
From Mentee to Mentor
Fate brought Debbie into my life in 2007 when she was hired at WFIE in Evansville, Ind. This was her first time as a vice president and general manager of a TV station. I liked her instantly.
I was at a little crossroads myself. After interning with the station in my second (okay, third) senior year, I had just been hired as a web producer. Seeing something in me that I had yet to discover, Debbie began asking me what my next step was. We worked together to make a plan for my career and I worked hard to make sure that I measured up to her expectations.
Being mentored by Debbie taught me what it takes to be the kind of leader that people respect and believe in. These hard-fought lessons have never left my mind. To this day, Debbie is a trusted advisor and a dear friend who I know I can count on.
Paying it forward
There’s only one thing Debbie asks of her mentees, “You have to mentor someone, too. You need to pay it forward.” I’ve been lucky to have just that chance. I’ve mentored many young professionals and I have enjoyed watching their careers blossom.
Although mentoring can be difficult, Debbie said watching her mentees succeed brings her joy. “I think mentoring is worth every minute of your time. I can’t see not ever being there for people that want that kind of input.”
Article originally appeared in the Summer 2017 issue of the “NKY Business Journal.”
A Campbell County man is enjoying a sweet second act as the owner of an award-winning food truck.
Marty Meersman, owner and artisan of Marty’s Waffles, comes to the food truck profession after a 16-year teaching career as a college professor, both in Minnesota and Kentucky. Marty’s Waffles started as a labor of love with a great recipe, “we’d tried some waffles in town and we really liked them but we thought we could make them even better,” Marty said.
In 2009, Marty and his family happened upon a local Belgian baker where they sampled a traditional Liège waffle, a dough-based waffle recipe originating in the town of Liege, Belgium. From the very first bite, Marty was obsessed. A few weeks later, he received a waffle iron from his sons for his birthday. So began his insatiable desire to make the perfect waffle.
Marty went to work honing his recipe. He said it took him 2,000 attempts to get the waffles where he wanted them to be. With his waffle game strong, Marty began sharing his waffles with folks around town. People started to ask where they could buy them.
In August of 2011, he bought a used step van. Marty and his right-hand man, Pete Hall, began transforming the truck into health department-approved kitchen on wheels. Fortunately for Marty, his wife Julie, a professional graphic designer, took on the job of branding the company and designing the food truck. The truck launched in August 2013.
We caught up with Marty while he was serving an afternoon, pre-meeting snack to some very lucky employees at Darling Ingredients in Cold Spring. “We always bring in a treat for our quarterly meetings,” Kim Martin of Darling Ingredients said. Bringing in the truck is just one part of their commitment to treating their employees well. Kim says the company caters in lunch each day for their staff of over 100.
For Darling Ingredients employees, the #1 seller was the Sea Salt Caramel with Fresh Makers Mark Bourbon Whipped Cream. Marty’s take on this classic flavor combo has a salted bottom with the caramel generously drizzled on top. The side of bourbon whipped cream adds a beautiful dimension of flavor that stays true to the truck’s Kentucky roots.
You can buy Marty’s Waffles any time at Folk School Coffee Parlor in Ludlow or at any of the three Barleycorn’s locations. Be sure to catch Marty’s Waffles this spring at food truck rallies around the area. If you want to know where the truck will be next, check out his website, http://www.martyswaffles.com.
Marty’s tips for food truck success
Do a lot of research before you begin.
Be ready to work hard. Marty could work 80 hours in a 3 day weekend.
Budget for 25% more start up expenses than you think.
Hire good, friendly people with a sense of humor.
This article originally appeared in the Spring 2017 issue of “NKY Business Journal.”
Last night I got it in my head it was time to clean house. Not my real house, of course, that’s in great shape, but rather my digital house.
As the Digital Marketing Manager for personalization company Cerkl, I deal with a lot of email. My work inbox receives hundreds a week and I have no problem addressing each one, deleting or filing, and moving on. My personal Gmail, however, is another story. It’s like the inbox version of “Hoarders.”
The Cleansing Begins
Resolve strong, I started by cleaning out my Primary folder. That was pretty easy – tax info, upcoming travel plan docs – keep. Old emails from a camp my daughter no longer attends – ditch. Quickly I had whittled that inbox down to just 20 items. Could I be the Marie Kondo of inbox maintenance, I wondered. Yeah, I was flying high.
Then I looked at my Promotions tab and my aspirations of email inbox excellence fell sharply to the ground. I had thousands of emails. Ugh. So much junk. I began an unsubscribe spree. So, how did I separate the wheat from the chaff?
Here are the three reasons I, and most people, unsubscribe:
- Too Frequent – Email me every day or even every week and we haven’t had an interaction in three years? Would you do that in real life? We are done.
- Not Mobile – Most internet use in on mobile devices. If your email doesn’t look good on my phone, you are out of my inbox forever.
- Not Relevant – I am 35-year-old plus size mother of a daughter. I am not in need of boys clothes or the perfect prom dress. If your email systems spoke to your website, you could figure that out and tailor your messages.
Respect the box, dude
In the end, it comes down to respect. If your audience has welcomed you into their digital life, be sure that your communications are providing them real value and respecting their preferences. Everything else is just noise.
The number of hours you spend in the sack could be hurting your bottom line.
According to the latest National Sleep Foundation guidelines, adults should be getting 7 to 9 hours of restful sleep each night. So what’s standing in your way?
Nighttime used to be for rest and relaxation, but our devices are keeping us busy right up until our eyes close. St. Elizabeth Family Medicine physician, Dr. Mark Boyd, says lack of sleep hurts your productivity. When you don’t get the sleep you need your concentration, energy level and mood all take a serious hit.
Dr. Boyd says he’s seen this first hand in his practice, “It’s important to remember that just like diet and exercise, sleep is very important to your overall health.”
If you are struggling to get the rest you need, Dr. Boyd has created this helpful acronym to get you on track: SLEEP.
- S – Schedule sleep.
- Dr. Boyd says you should be going to sleep and waking up at the same time all days of the week.
- L – Light.
- Our internal clock is run by light. When you wake, Dr. Boyd says it’s wise to open the curtains and let some light in; it will help you wake up. In the evening, avoid light 30 minutes before bed. Your phone, computer, and TV are common culprits, although Dr. Boyd admits he has trouble with this one as well.
- E – Exercise.
- Just another reason to get moving! Dr. Boyd says morning or early afternoon is the perfect time for exercise but you should avoid exercise right before bedtime.
- E – Eating.
- Avoid eating for three to four hours before bed. A drink before bed will help you get to sleep but Dr. Boyd warns that alcohol-fueled sleep is not as restful.
- P – Pleasant.
- Make going to sleep an event you look forward to all day. Make your bedroom a haven of rest with a comfortable bed, dark curtains and soft sheets.
If you are having trouble getting the rest you need at night, you might be tempted to take up napping. Dr. Boyd says that could start a bad sleep cycle. If you must nap, do it early in the day and only for a short while.
Give your co-workers, family, and friends the benefit of the best you by making time for the rest you need.
Dr. Boyd encourages you to speak with your family physician if you are still having difficulty getting restorative sleep despite these helpful tips.
Article originally appeared in the Winter 2017 issue of “NKY Business Journal.”
While serving as the first-ever Digital Marketing Manager for the Campbell County Public Library, my director asked me to write, shoot, produce and edit a mini-documentary of sorts.
The goal was to tell the story of Rudy Bowling, a local sailor, and craftsman who created artful models of WWII ships.
Rudy’s models are spread out across the nation and were prominently displayed at the now-defunct Johnny’s Toys. Campbell County Public Library is very fortunate to have five on permanent loan.
Rudy didn’t use any kits or instruction in the construction of these ships. The models range in size from about 3 feet to about 5 feet in length and the attention to detail is startling.
His son shared Rudy’s story and after months of research we got together and he voiced the video.
The result is a short video telling the story of Rudy’s life, service, and craftsmanship.
The Evan and Jake Rouse are very busy guys. Just one year after the brothers opened up their taproom in the heart of old Covington, they’re bringing their brand of craft brews to Cincinnati Kroger customers.Continue reading “Braxton has the perfect recipe for success”