Let's Talk: 1-877-479-4385

Blog

2015-02-12_16-48-34

What does your personality mean to you and your community?

What does your personality mean to you and your community?

My sisters and I were recently sitting in a cafe and I was discussing potential educational icebreakers that I could organize for the group of resident assistants that I will supervise this upcoming year.  A bunch of different icebreakers were brought up, but the two that stood out to me involved discovering the different personalities within a group of people.  These common personality tests are known throughout many communities as the Myers-Briggs and True Color tests. These two icebreakers stood out to me for two reasons: 1. I have taken both while working within a team. 2. I felt that both of the tests would be a good way for all the individuals to be provided an initial and quick understanding about both themselves and the other members of their team. So why is having an initial understanding of other members […]

Read More...

Having a Group Doesn’t Mean You Have a Community

Having a Group Doesn’t Mean You Have a Community

What do you do when your community doesn’t want to, well…“community”? In addition to working with Swift Kick, I am also a personal trainer. I teach a weekly bootcamp class with “The People’s Bootcamp” and get to bring together two things I like to do: exercise and telling people what to do teaching. On any given week, up to half of those in attendance are regulars; they have been there week after week and, other than the actual exercises I select, know what to expect. Recently, along with the other instructor, I have been brainstorming ideas to spruce up the class. Once armed with a few options, I went to the class to ask their feedback. Me: “Hey everyone, quick poll for the class. How do you feel about having themed classes? Here are some I had in mind: Christmas in July (wear a […]

Read More...

When You Go To War with Post-It Notes as Your Ammo

When You Go To War with Post-It Notes as Your Ammo

What if you walked into work, looked out the window, and saw Marge Simpson looking at you from the office across the street? Here at the office, Melissa and I have been day-dreaming about attaching a #FreeHugs sign to the window by our desk, so that the building next to us can have a laugh. Apparently, we aren’t the only ones with the idea of cross-building window messaging. Recently on Canal Street, in New York City, a full on Post-It War has erupted. It started with one creative soul, who used Post-Its to write “HI” in his office window. It didn’t take long for other offices to catch on and send a message back. Before you know it, whole buildings looked like something out of a Pixar movie. The Lorax joins the #postit party. #postitwars #postitwar #canalnotes pic.twitter.com/UsBxk4FOOc — Erika Wegener (@ELWegener) May […]

Read More...

Leadership is Not Always About Being Followed

Leadership is Not Always About Being Followed

During a short car ride home from the gym with my father, he started to share about what he had been thinking about during his workout. He shared that through his life experiences he has learned that leadership is not always about making sure others are following you, but more about being willing to go where others are not willing to go. Specifically, leadership to him is standing up for what you value as being right even if you are standing up all by yourself. This made us begin to think about leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr. and where would we be if he had not been willing to initially stand on his own for what he believed was right? I was given an important reminder by my family member that the most needed forms of leadership are […]

Read More...

Team Bonding with a Book Club

Team Bonding with a Book Club

My Kindle noted that I was 17% done reading Seth Godin’s book, Linchpin. The main thought running through my head was how freakin’ long of a build-up Seth was taking just to get to anything actionable in the book. He kept looping thoughts and popping into odd side tangents. Was I being too harsh on the book or would the rest of the Swift Kick team agree with me? I couldn’t wait to find out at our team book club lunch next week. On the face of it, a team book club might seem like a waste of work time, but don’t be so quick to judge a book by its cover. There are many benefits of a team book club: Team Bonding – Relationships are built on shared experiences. Hosting a team book club is a shared experience. Everyone on […]

Read More...

5 Ways to Make Your Graduating Seniors Feel Appreciated

5 Ways to Make Your Graduating Seniors Feel Appreciated

Every day, I use an orange highlighter to check off my to-do list during work at Swift Kick HQ. It makes me smile to use it because where it came from means so much more than an average highlighter. I can still remember my friend Rachel, at my last club meeting ever, saying Did you notice?? The highlighter and sharpie in your graduate survival kit are orange!! That’s your favorite color! She was so excited to tell me that she knew my love for orange and remembered to personalize my senior gift, and that moment made the gift even better. This lone orange highlighter, 3 years later, continues to bridge the gap between my favorite student organization in college and my post-graduate life.  As you say goodbye to your graduating friends, make it a point to show them that they are […]

Read More...

Random Stranger Community Moment over Hockey

Random Stranger Community Moment over Hockey

Since we have so many die hard Penguin hockey fans in my house, myself being one of them, my family decided that we were going to go out to watch the playoff game. When we got to the restaurant, there was already a good amount of people within an area surrounded by eight flat screen TVs. My father, mother, brother, and I decided to choose a table that was closest toward the second flat screen TV. As the game proceeded, it was obvious that everyone in the restaurant was watching the hockey game and through the comments made it was also clear that everyone was a Penguins fan. At one particular moment there was a situation where the other team made a cheap play against the Penguins and two of the individuals sitting next to my family’s table struck up conversation with […]

Read More...

C-O-M-M-U-N-I-T-Y

C-O-M-M-U-N-I-T-Y

No matter what it is that brought you to your current community: passion, interest, language, love, friends or simply a whim, you are part of something special. What does your C-O-M-M-U-N-I-T-Y stand for? Connection to each other and the larger community If you think about it, every group and relationship you are a part of is a community within a community. It’s important to be connected to your smaller group but also to the larger group around you. There are opportunities for support, inspiration and collaboration just waiting to be tapped into. Open to new ideas and experiences Everyone in your community has a set of experiences that separates them from everyone else. Someone may be an avid skydiver and wants to do 100 jumps in their lifetime, while another may be a member of 4 different book clubs in an effort to […]

Read More...

Overcoming New Student Fears Through Connections

Overcoming New Student Fears Through Connections

Being a member of the community at the University of Minnesota Duluth, I recently noticed that there were and still are many students who are in the “neutral zone” because they are unsure about being bold and friendly. Moving to college is an overwhelming time filled with new experiences. By the time I meet with the students in my RockGroup, many of them seem lost and confused. The students look around at all of the new faces, including mine, and can get too overwhelmed by the process and be resistant toward joining activities. One student in particular had a hard time adjusting to the college life because he was so uncomfortable. This particular student reacted nervously at first to my efforts to make him feel welcomed, however, he seemed to open up as the week went on.  As a matter […]

Read More...

Ways To Have An Adventurous Summer Within A New Community

Ways To Have An Adventurous Summer Within A New Community

As summer is approaching, I have had multiple conversations with my various groups of friends regarding their summer plans.  A few of my friends within my cohort or graduate school class are attending summer internships in a different state.  One of my undergraduate friends is also experiencing a similar change in scenery by moving to Pittsburgh to start her graduate school career.  The last friend I had this discussion with is just remaining in the same area, but expanding his mind by changing up his regular summer schedule and taking summer classes to get ahead in his program. As I was starting to consider my own summer plans, I began to notice a common theme throughout all the conversations I had with my various friends… CHANGE! The individuals in my cohort were seeking both a change of scenery and community for […]

Read More...