Search the site

Chick-fil-A (Katy, TX)

In a short interview Courtney Holmes, the Operating Partner of Chick-fil-A Katy, TX, shares how Habitudes has helped create community in her generationally-diverse team.

Hire Dynamics

Hire Dynamics is an industry-leading, award-winning staffing and professional recruitment organization. 

Since 2001, Hire Dynamics has been built around the concept of loyalty – to its clients, its internal staff, and the talent it places.  By doing things the right way, and never compromising on its values, they have become a leader in providing talent on-demand.

Hire Dynamics is a different kind of company, and it shows in everything they’ve accomplished:

  • Top 5 Best Staffing Firms to Work for in the U.S.
  • The #2 Best Place to Work in Atlanta
  • The #1 Best Place to Work in Greenville, SC
  • The #1 Best Place to Work in Charlotte, NC
  • A 2014 Inavero Best of Staffing™ Client Award Winner
  • A 2014 Inavero Best of Staffing™ Talent Award Winner

In 2012, Hire Dynamics decided to implement Habitudes as a tool to teach basic leadership ideas and soft skills to young employees. To find out more, we interviewed Sonya Buckley, the Chief People Officer at Hire Dynamics. Here’s what she had to say:

What challenges were you facing before implementing Habitudes®?

As our company gained national recognition and rapid growth, we began to experience a shifting corporate demographic – a large increase in younger staff. With this demographic shift, we saw many positives, but at the same time, there were some challenges. Many of our managers were finding it difficult to connect with younger employees and communicate expectations. This disconnect was also hindering the younger staff from embracing our corporate core values in both client and office interactions. What’s more, our managers didn’t have the time to design and develop new systems to combat this challenge.

So we sought outside help, and after some searching, we found Growing Leaders and their Habitudes® system.

How did Habitudes fit into your organization?

Habitudes gave us a wide variety of image-based leadership principles that perfectly aligned with our corporate values and culture. It also provided us with a turnkey system we could hand to our Branch Managers, complete with teacher guides and workbooks.

As a result, our Branch Managers have been able to discuss one image per month from Habitudes Book #1: The Art of Self-Leadership with their teams. These managers plan on going through all four books in the Habitudes series with their staff members.

In addition, our corporate staff is going through an image from Habitudes for Communicators each month.

What results did Habitudes help create for your company?

The results have been great! We are now exploring ways to increase the frequency of Habitudes conversations. Simply going through one image per month, we’ve already seen a number of strong outcomes, including:

  • Greater transparency between managers and employees that has lead to deeper, more relevant conversations.
  • Timed saved for our managers, who would have had to design and develop a new training program.
  • It’s helped reveal how each staff member reacts to different situations, allowing our managers to better relate with and cultivate each team member’s strengths.
  • Strengthened communication between the corporate office and our branch locations, clients, and contract employees.

Habitudes will continue to grow as a part of Hire Dynamic’s strategic training programs in the following years..

To learn how to create this kind of experience for your organization, click here

Leadership Development in Retail

An interview with Steve Krajenka, who has served in executive leadership roles for companies such as Gap, Old Navy, American EagleSony Electronics, and The Discovery Channel.

Throughout my years working in corporate America, I have experienced one consistent truth in the companies I’ve helped lead: Teams succeed when they rally around leadership principles they can all agree upon.

But this isn’t the norm. In many organizations, managers tend to do their own thing in terms of leadership. I saw teams guided by the principle of ‘go with your gut,’ which made for leadership styles based on emotions. My goal has always been to create unity in how a team thinks about people and how we address issues and situations..

I’ve tried different leadership development programs before, but most were too time intensive or ineffective. Another issue with most leadership development programs is that they are based on lecturing, or, as Dr. Elmore would say, ‘downloading information.’ Retail people are highly visual and in touch with their emotions, so I needed a program or resource that connected with and engaged our managers.

Habitudes has been that resource. First off, the books are short, straightforward, and easy to read. They’re also image-based, which connected with our visual learners, and each leadership principle was backed with a story that connected with their emotions. What’s more, the books allowed flexibility in the actual training; we could discuss Habitudes over the phone or in person. It connected so much with our managers, in fact, many of them went back to their families and taught them the images. Not many training programs I know of are compelling enough for team members to carry the learning over to their own families.

As we used Habitudes, I quickly saw a change in my team’s vocabulary. It was as if we all started speaking the same language. Quickly, the principles were absorbed by the managers and put into action. Within three months, my managers were comfortable leading their teams with confidence. Habitudes helped create that strong foundation for them to stand on and make decisions from.

The beauty of Habitudes is its simplicity: they are quick to learn and even quicker to apply. Nobody has time these days, so this benefit ofHabitudes has been invaluable. I’ve also found that these images (and the principles they represent) don’t leave you. My teams and I can easily remember what each image represents. Habitudes makes it easy to teach important leadership lessons and continuously build the culture. It’s encouraging as a leader to hear appreciation and praise from managers for our training programs while I travel.

I’d like to share results from one specific company that I’ve used Habitudes with: Martin + Osa, an American Eagle company.

When we decided to launch Habitudes as a training program, Dr. Tim Elmore came to speak to our group for a half day, where he helped us understand how to work with Millennials. From that point on, we used Habitudes for the next four years, and in that time, we never lost a store manager. (Which is amazing, considering the average turnover for retail managers is 30-40% per year.)  What’s more, our customer service numbers were recognized as the best year after year in all of American Eagle because our culture — which was birthed from Habitudes — fostered servant leaders. We also saw continuous increases in employee engagement levels throughout this same time period.

With Habitudes, we were able to create a culture where our managers wanted to stay because they felt invested in and our employees were inspired to be engaged in their work to better serve our customers. No matter what company I help lead, Habitudes is my go-to training program.

To learn how to create this kind of experience for your organization, click here.