Recruit, Inspire & Retain

January/February 2008

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bullet FUN Days to Celebrate (Call/Email for Ways to Celebrate the FUN Days to Celebrate!)
bullet RECRUIT: Preparing for the Upcoming Employee Shortage: Is the “Perfect Storm” Headed Your Way?
bullet Translations can be the funniest things
bullet Who's Wearing Fun Meters?
bullet What Are You Reading This Month?
bullet INSPIRE: Encourage Your Employees to Talk Behind Your Back
bullet TRAIN: Helping “Millenials” Learn the Basics of Workplace Behavior
Want TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. to sit in on your planning sessions?
bullet RETAIN: What to Do When a Staff Person Gets Too Sick to Do the Job — But is Still Productive
bullet Professional Development Conferences
bullet Ways to Volunteer & Give

READERS! If you find an article worthy of Recruit, Inspire & Retain, please send it (with a note telling us where you found it)

We encourage you to use these articles in your own communications with staff and customers/members.

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February is...
National Time Management Month
American Heart Month
International Friendship Month
African American History Month
Chocolate Lover’s Month
Snack Food Month
National Popcorn Poppin’ Month
Cherry Month

February 8-14 – Love & Laughter Week
February 10-15 – New Idea Week

February 1 – Inspire Your Employees to Excellence Day (started in 1992!), sponsored by TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.!!!!!
February 3 – Carrot Cake Day
February 4 – Homemade Soup Day
February 5 – Mardi Gras & Chocolate Fondue Day
February 6 – Pay A Compliment Day
February 7 – Chinese New Year, Send A Card To A Friend Day, & Run For Your Life Day
February 8 – Smile Day & Kite Flying Day
February 9 – Pizza Pie Day, Weather Day (Don’t we have weather every day?),
                    & Toothache Day
February 10 – Umbrella Day
February 11 – Clean Out Your Computer Day
February 12 – Chocolate Day
February 14 – Valentine’s Day
February 15 – Burger Lovers Day & Gumdrop Day
February 19 – Chocolate Mint Day & Solar System Day (Spend the day insisting to everyone you
                       encounter that the solar system is made up of chocolate mints. You’ll drive the
                       people around you crazy — or they’ll lock you up.)
February 20 – Love You Pet Day & Cherry Pie Day
February 21 – Directory Day
February 22 – Teddy Bear Day, World Thinking Day, & Popcorn Day
February 23 – Banana Bread Day
February 24 – Obnoxious Day (see February 19th for ideas)
February 27 – Polar Bear Day
February 29 – Leap Day

March 1 – Share A Smile Day & Peanut Butter Lover’s Day
March 2 – Banana Cream Pie Day, Employee Appreciation Day, Salesperson’s Day, Read Across
                 America Day, & World Day of Prayer (Pick the one that’s most important to you and
                 spend the day doing it)
March 3 – I Want You to Be Happy Day & National Anthem Day
March 4 – Hug A GI Day (THIS should be a month, at least!)

Email TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. for ideas on how to celebrate any of these days.

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Preparing for the Upcoming Employee Shortage: Is the "Perfect Storm" Headed Your Way?
by Patrick Seaton

Since we are talking about a storm, I’ll play the role of meteorologist.

Current Conditions:

  1. Some companies are having trouble finding skilled workers to fill their positions. We have become a turnstile society of employees, where it is totally acceptable to be at a company for 2 to 3 years before moving on — we no longer consider these people as job-hoppers.

  2. The generation entering the workforce today needs and expects to feel connected — just look at the number of gadgets and communication tools they have at their disposal.

  3. People are moving into supervisory positions with minimal supervisor training — gone are the days of grooming and mentoring an employee to move up the ranks when the "boss" retires. Companies need to grow and "reinvent" themselves in order to remain competitive. Participative parenting has created a generation of people who want and expect to be part of the decision-making process.


  1. Over the next 10 years, 70 million people will retire and there will be only 30 million people to replace them.
  2. Finding qualified people to fill positions will become increasingly more difficult.
  3. The turnstile will only move faster if employees are dissatisfied with their job or employer.
  4. Companies will need to maintain high employee satisfaction if they want to retain their most valuable assets — their employees.
  5. Managers will need to become better leaders so that employees don’t use the manager as the reason for leaving the company. (This, by the way, is one of the most common reasons cited in exit interviews, as to why an employees leaves the company.)


  1. Companies will have permanent openings and those on staff will have to carry more weight.
  2. People will easily "move on" if they are not satisfied with their situation.
  3. "Work smarter, not harder" will challenge us more than ever.
  4. Managers will need to become great leaders if they want to keep their followers.
  5. The true test will not be how to create change, but how to manage change.

Combine these current conditions, forecasts, and predictions and you have "The Perfect Storm".

How to Prepare for the Upcoming Employee Shortage

Build leadership skills in your people so employees will want to follow them.

Develop topnotch change management skills across the organization so you can adapt to the employee shortage should it hit your organization.

Focus on creating efficient processes and continually refine them as the workforce dynamics change.

Find ways to break the employees turnstile movement in your company.

Involve your younger generation employees in the decision-making process as much as possible.

Work smarter, not harder, at everything
you do.

Weather the Storm
Managing change is not magic, a mystery, or a secret, nor does it need to be overwhelming. It can be boiled down into a simple formula. It is also logical and realistic, but it requires planning and follow-up.

There are 6 elements to consider when managing The Perfect Storm:

  1. Vision/Direction
  2. Processes/Procedures
  3. People/Resources
  4. Skills/Training
  5. Motivation
  6. Action Plans

When establishing vision and direction, make sure that the vision is broad, inspiring, instills a sense of purpose, is positive, and provides energy and attitude control.

When considering what processes and procedures need to be created or modified, consider any and all of the following:

  1. Team/Department
  2. Administrative
  3. Communication
  4. Process Analysis
  5. Process Improvements
  6. Legal

Make sure you have enough people, their roles and responsibilities are clearly defined, you’ve selected the best person for the tasks, and you have communicated their task in a way they understand. Equally important is the need to have other resources — equipment, tools, financial support, knowledge, historical information (and be sure you know if your resources should be in-house or outsourced).


Skills to be honed:

  1. Overcoming barriers to change
  2. Creating and managing effective teams
  3. Effective leadership
  4. Communication
  5. Skills assessment
  6. Listening
  7. Being proactive

Effective motivation is more than a simple e-mail from time-to-time. Motivation is an interlocking strategy that uses multiple tools (reward, recognition, responsibility, delegation, and levels of freedom. You may need to look up, down, and sideways in the organization when designing a recognition and motivation plan. The key word is design, invest time in developing a plan that fits together with other plans in the organization.

Action Plans
Your plans should be clear, measurable, realistic, anchored with a timetable, open to the team, and written down.

Change is inevitable...Growth is Optional
As Michael Dell stated in his book, Direct from Dell, "Change is opportunity. It is also constant, direct, and temporary, for once things change, you can bet they are going to change again. Learning to thrive on constant change is the next frontier."

Charles Darwin gave us the following insight: "It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change."

So, is the "Perfect Storm" coming? If it does come your way, you may not be able to control the storm’s direction, strength or timing. However, you can control you organization’s readiness and ability to weather the storm’s resulting changes.

Adapted from B2B, January 2008


Building Tomorrow's Talent: A Practitioner's Guide to Talent Management and Succession Planning, by Doris Sims & Matthew Gay

Succession Planning Basics, by ASTD
Order both by emailing or calling 800-469-3560. Mention RIR for 10% off.

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Recruitment, inspiration, training, and retention ideasHave a recruitment, inspiration, training, or retention idea or question? Ask by clicking the question mark, and we’ll post your idea or question (and the answer) in Answers & Ideas on Recruiting, Inspiring, Training, & Retaining Great Employees at


Translations can be the funniest things. . .

Tokyo hotel notice: Guests are requested not to smile or do other disgusting behaviors in bed.
Swiss restaurant menu: Our wines leave you nothing to hope for.
Italian hotel brochure: This hotel is renowned for its peace and solitude. In fact, crowds from all over the world flock here to enjoy its solitude.
Bucharest hotel lobby sign: The lift is being fixed. During this time you will be unbearable.
In a Leipzig elevator: Do not enter the lift backwards, and only when lit up.
Pari hotel elevator sign: Please leave your values at the front desk.
Athens hotel: Visitors are expected to complain at the office between the hours of 9 and 11 daily.
Yugoslavia hotel: The flattening of underwear with pleasure is the job of the chambermaid.
Moscow hotel near a Russian Orthodox monastery: You are welcome to visit the cemetery where famous Russian and Soviet composers, artists and writers are buried daily except Thursday.
Bangkok dry cleaner’s sign:
Drop your trousers here for best results.
Paris dress shop sign: Dresses for Street Walking.
Hong Kong dress shop sign: Ladies have fits upstairs.
Greek tailor shop sign: Order your summers suit. Because is big rush, we will execute in rotation.
From the "Soviet Weekly": There will be a Moscow exhibition of arts by 15,000 Soviet Republic painters and sculptors. These were executed over the past two years.
East African newspaper story: A new swimming pool is rapidly taking shape since the contractors have thrown in the bulk of their workers.
Vienna hotel sign: In case of fire, do your utmost to alarm the hotel porter.
Sign in Germany’s Black Forest: It is strictly forbidden on our Black Forest camping site that people of different sex, for instance, men and women, live together in one tent unless they are married for this purpose.
Hong Kong dentist ad: Teeth extracted by the latest Methodists.
Rome laundry sign: Ladies, leave your clothes here and spend the afternoon having a good time.
Czech tourist agency: Take one of our horse-driven city tours. We guarantee no miscarriages.
Copenhagen airline ticket office: We take your bags and send them in all directions.
Moscow hotel room door sign: If this is your first visit to the USSR, you are welcome to it.
Norway cocktail lounge sign: Ladies are requested not to have children in the bar.
Japan road detour sign: Stop. Drive sideways.
Budapest zoo: Please do not feed the animals. If you have any suitable food, give it to the guard.
Rome doctor’s office sign: Specialist in women and other diseases.
Acapulco hotel reassurance: The manager has personally passed all the water served here.
Two Spain shop-window ads: English well talking. Here speeching American.
Sweden fur shop window: Fur coats made of ladies from their own skin.
Swiss mountain inn announcement: Special today. No ice cream.
Thailand hotel room notice: Please do not bring solicitors into your room.
Tokyo bar sign: Special cocktails for the ladies with nuts.

From Auerbach International Inc.

"All stressed out and no one to choke" poster Here’s a FREE poster that everyone will LOVE Want more? Email or call 800-469-3560 to find out how to buy packs of posters!

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Fun Meter   * Faires Plastic Surgery staff & patients

* Best Buy staff dealing with the after Christmas rush in Tampa, FL

* Friends of Hunter Freeman

* Friends going to Mexico on The Minnesota Winter Escape

* Sally Marco, of Gratitude (a really cool store in Part Aransas, TX) — Gratitude has been stocking Fun Meters for years. We delivered her order in person for the 1st time this month!



Guy Summers, President of Farrell Group LLC, is reading:

Choice Theory: A New Psychology of Personal Freedom
by William Glasser, M.D.

Choice theory advocates the position that we choose everything we do and that people can neither make us miserable nor make us happy. Our behaviors and feelings are, instead, generated internally. We live in a world where external control dominates our psychology, making us believe that we are externally motivated. This book is a great reminder of how important it is for us to not only choose the life we want to live, but to strengthen the relationships with people that are important in our lives.

Email us with what you’re reading & a sentence or 2 about why you’re reading it or what you learned from it (can be fiction or non-fiction).

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Encourage Your Employees to Talk Behind Your Back
by Michael Feuer, co-founder of Office Max

It’s a national pastime for everyone to think that he or she is smarter than the boss. Many times, an employee can — and certainly should — outshine his or her superior on specific subjects. As a boss, you can be sure your people will compare their abilities and creativity with yours and second-guess your strategies and practices. Therefore, I suggest that you facilitate the process so that talking behind your back can occur more regularly, on your terms, and be productive to boot.

There are some very simple and effective methods to providing “employee back-talk time.” As CEO of my Fortune 500 company, I discovered that I could control this process by structuring a means where all my direct reports could have an open forum to take their best shot at me. Early on, I created an Operating Committee, which was composed of my direct reports and other key corporate managers and executives who had to carry out company mandates and run the place day in and day out.

I attended only one Operating Committee meeting and made a statement that took less than a minute. I simply said that this would be my first and last appearance at “your” weekly meetings and that, going forward, the group would set its own agenda. I emphasized, however, that on every agenda there should be “back-talk” time, during which participants could vent their frustrations and talk about any traditional unspeakables — even if they reflected negatively on my leadership, decisions or capabilities. I stated that the only thing I asked was that once the committee thought I was making some big mistakes, someone must be appointed to come and tell me — with my promise of immunity from prosecution. I made it clear to the Operating Committee members that their job was to make me better and, to facilitate that, they could talk about my shortcomings, real or perceived, behind my back.

Now, I didn’t just fall off a turnip truck, and I knew that not all of the comments would be complimentary. I approached the process in a very Machiavellian manner, knowing that if I could get past the bruised ego, I could become a more effective CEO and ultimately deliver better results for all constituents.

Each week, my people were able to identify my errors, which were often plentiful. At times, I observed the folks leaving the Operating Committee meetings with a very satisfied smirk on their faces. Why? Because they got whatever was bugging them off their chests. They were able to compare notes, and I think, in many cases, they realized that what might have been festering as a big problem was, in the overall scheme of things, not particularly significant.

Another ancillary benefit of the behind-the-back talking is that it tends to diffuse situations that might otherwise grow to biblical proportions. This release enables the team to move on to issues of greater importance.

There are a number of other practical ways to foster venting in your organization. During particularly tense times, it is appropriate to excuse yourself from a planned dinner after a day of meetings with employees because your gut tells you they need to have time to themselves. It takes a certain confidence, including a healthy ego, for the leader to foster this process.

In the public arena, our country’s leaders have all experienced a not-so-behind-their-back venting, particularly by the media, within minutes of making a statement. Pundits would dissect what was said right, wrong or that was irrelevant. This ongoing safety valve has served citizens well and provides an effective method for public officials to gauge acceptance of their actions and plan their next steps.

You, as a leader, can use similar “back-talk” techniques to maintain equilibrium in your company and reduce both petty and deep-seated distractions that impede progress. Being a good manager means accomplishing objectives through others. Being a great leader means keeping the team focused and communicating with you and each other.

Politics in business and talking behind the boss’s back aren’t always negatives, as long as you manage the process and encourage it with your blessing.

From SmartBusiness Chicago, December 2007

360 Degree Feedback Pocketbook, by Tony Peacock
It’s OK to Be the Boss: The Step By Step Guide to Becoming the Manager Your Employees Need, by Bruce Tulgan
Order both by emailing or calling 800-469-3560. Mention RIR for 10% off.

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Helping “Millenials” Learn the Basics of Workplace Behavior
by Kathryn Tyler, M.A.

Newly hired millennial employees at George Mason University (GMU) in Fairfax, VA., were creating an impression, and it wasn't good. Some were showing up for work in "flip-flops and revealing clothing," says Lori Ann Roth, Ph.D., director of training and development. "The gentlemen were wearing jeans with boxers showing; the ladies were wearing lowcut jeans with thongs showing and spaghetti strap low-cut tank tops."

As a result, Roth continues, "we received many requests (from managers) for training we called Professionalism at Work."

GMU took a proactive approach to integrating millennials into its workforce, an approach that other HR professionals could adapt for the younger employees in their organizations. The millennial generation (also known as Generation Y and the Net Generation) consists of 80 million people in the United States between ages 8 and 29. They have been exposed to more technological advances than any previous generation. Most do not remember life without pagers, cell phones, computers or personal electronic entertainment. The impersonality of the technology they grew up with and the speed of communication created some of the training needs we found.

Millennials need training in professional behavior, in basic writing, confidentiality issues, critical thinking, and how to give and receive constructive criticism.

What They Learn
Millennials generally account for the majority in a group of new hires these days, so training in the ways of the workplace during new-hire orientation can be useful for such groups. Among the topics we chose:

bullet Dressing professionally. Some managers say guidance on appropriate work attire is the training need that surprises them the most. "I did a talk for a donation center recently," says Jean M. Twenge, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology at San Diego State University. "The manager said she was interviewing for a receptionist position. Two young ladies showed up for the interview, and she sent them both home because they were showing too much cleavage." Twenge, author of Generation Me: Why Today's Young Americans Are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled--and More Miserable Than Ever Before (Free Press, 2006), says: "You need to explain [how inappropriate attire] hurts your business and the way co-workers relate to each other. It's distracting to other people when they're looking at your navel all day."
bullet Professional etiquette and good customer service. Raise millennials' awareness of how different behaviors are perceived, says Arlene Arnsparger, co-author of 4genR8tns: Succeeding with Colleagues, Cohorts and Customers (Claire Raines Associates, 2007). Millennials are good at multi-tasking, she says. "It doesn't occur to them that it could be offensive. If you're wearing your ear buds hooked to your iPod while talking to me, as a customer, I assume you're ignoring me." Arnsparger recommends providing millennials with training in cell phone and technology etiquette.

When and where, for example, is it appropriate to make and receive cell phone calls? Are there times when it is permissible to wear an iPod while working? Is it OK to surf the Internet while talking on the phone? How much time should millennials allow for a response after sending a colleague an e-mail or an instant message (IM)? Issues have arisen when millennials have expected an instant reply to a message. "We give the class participants five different examples of an e-mail, and they choose which is appropriate," Roth says. Lisa J. Oliver, vice president for training and quality assurance at PRC, a customer relationship branding company with 14,000 employees, headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., recommends coaching millennials on customer service skills such as "how to build rapport, effective word choices and loyalty statements. For example, 'We appreciate your business. ... Thank you for using us. Please contact us anytime.' "
bullet Written communication. Many millennials are so accustomed to using shorthand for text messaging–B/C for "because" or BTW for "by the way"–that they may not remember how to spell words correctly. In business, Twenge says, "you can't spell 'you are' 'u r.' Some people might be insulted when you tell them this, but for many it needs to be spelled out. Preface it by saying, 'You may already know this, but IM shorthand doesn't give a good first impression, even in e-mail.' "Young people may be surprised to learn that for a lot of older people — even people in their 30s — the impression you give when you use shorthand is illiteracy. When I hire for my research lab, the one [applicant] who spells correctly is rare and often the person who gets hired." Oliver agrees. Hence, PRC also offers employees a course titled Business Communication and Writing.

In teaching millennials to write well, Twenge says, touch on the subject of brevity. For a generation accustomed to text-messaging, training for brevity may seem unnecessary, she says. "But I've noticed a lot of millennials' e-mails give irrelevant and personal information. They don't get to the point until the second page. For instance, if a report to a client is late, apologizing for it being late is good. Saying there were unanticipated delays is OK. Saying the delay was because you had to go to the doctor … isn't."
bullet Confidentiality. Members of previous generations understood unspoken taboos against discussing salaries and performance appraisal scores in public, but millennials blog their innermost secrets on MySpace and post videos of themselves doing anything on YouTube. "Millennials tend to blur the public and private," says Twenge. As a result, they may not realize others' needs for privacy. Companies with a lot of proprietary information need to be especially cautious and clear about boundaries--and about the consequences for failing to adhere to them. Millennials may have "a more casual attitude in using the Internet for sending confidential information with little awareness of legal ramifications or sensitive issues," says Linda Harber, associate vice president for human resources and payroll at GMU.
bullet Accepting and giving criticism. Millennials "did not learn how to take criticism well," Twenge says. "In education in the 1980s and 1990s, there was a trend not to correct children's mistakes to preserve their self-esteem. This generation got a lot of praise and not much criticism. Managers have commented to me, somewhat shocked, about young employees bursting into tears in their offices because they aren't getting enough praise. Moreover, millennials need to learn how to give constructive criticism without becoming caustic. If there's any hint of insult or rejection, [millennials] become aggressive: 'Don't disrespect me.' Physical aggression is on the wane, but verbal and written aggression, such as cyberbullying, is up." Twenge recommends asking millennial new hires to write papers on an industry-related topic and then conducting peer writing workshops. "Have everybody in the room critique on the writing content," she says. "They learn about not taking criticism personally and how to improve from it, as well as how to give criticism" and write well.
bullet Critical-thinking skills. "We're starting to see a lack of confidence and skill in problem-solving and critical-thinking skills," says Robert W. Wendover, director of the Center for Generational Studies, a research and training company in Aurora, CO. Millennials "are dependent on menu-driven thinking and prompts," he says, and "this leaves them lost" in an environment without menus. "On the job, the person becomes dependent on what other people, computers or machinery tell them to do." Wendover says some of his law enforcement clients are afraid of young recruits' inability to think for themselves. "It scares the daylights out of veteran officers. They call it 'spectatorship.' As one cop said, 'They watch "Rescue 911" and "Cops," and they think, "This is just like the one I saw the other night." ' Only it's actually happening, and they don't know what to do."

Delivering the Training
Techno-savvy millennials seem like a natural fit to train via e-learning methods such as podcasts or Internet streaming video. However, experts warn, this decreases the ability to demonstrate desired behaviors. So Harber says, "We have chosen to use face-to-face training because we can model behaviors and have our participants practice, review and practice again. We ask many questions and give our participants opportunities to voice their thoughts."

bullet Dynamic classroom training that uses technology. Twenge says if the training is done in person, you can't just stand there and talk. It has to be interactive, using TV or movie clips to drive discussion. Wendover agrees. "Continually engage them," he says, by walking around, giving a web presentation and asking tough questions. PRC also uses a blend of instructor-led and computer- based training. Oliver recommends "a variety of interactive exercises, such as role plays, having the participants perform 'teachbacks'-- team exercises that have them develop product advertisements--and scavenger hunts on the intranet. Group activities and hands-on practice are effective with millennials." Roth adds, "Gen Y enjoys follow-up Internet links for reference, in contrast to handouts or names of book titles."
bullet Peer teaching. Millennials enjoy learning with groups. They are collaborative. They like experiential learning, Arnsparger says. Oliver says, "The teaching method should provide self-paced and self-discovery learning opportunities since millennials like to learn new things at their own pace."

Adapted from HR Magazine, January, 2008

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Get more tips on training great employees from TRAINING SYSTEMS.

Managing the Generation Mix: From Collision to Collaboration, by Carolyn A. Martin & Bruce Tulgan

Generations at Work: Managing the Clash of Veterans, Boomers, Xers, and Nexters in Your Workplace, by Ron Zemke, Claire Raines, Bob Filipczak

Order both by emailing or calling 800-469-3560. Mention RIR for 10% off.

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What to Do When a Staff Person Gets Too Sick to Do the Job — But is Still Productive

Has it ever happened to you? One of your most productive staff members comes to you and tells you they have been diagnosed with cancer or some other major illness that could involve a lot of time off, doctor appointments, treatment, and maybe even a loss of ability to do their normal work? You want to retain that valued employee. Give yourself permission to help your employee heal and discover an opportunity for creativity and continuing productivity. Open your heart, take a deep breath, (“prana/lifeforce” in Sanskrit), and exhale your negative energy of fear.

Join me on a similar journey. Yes, it’s my journey, and it’s ongoing. However, here’s how it started; the lessons I’ve learned so far; how life is perfect as it is, and I’m continuing to work successfully!

In April of 2007, I was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. That was not the diagnosis the doctors or I expected. I also did not expect the recovery to be as challenging as it was or the adjustment to becoming an insulin dependent diabetic quite so challenging. After all, I was a training facilitator and had training scheduled for June (and one of those engagements was in Las Vegas six weeks after surgery).

Now, you have to understand, I help people learn stress management, including complementary and alternative health strategies. I am a trainer/educator who professes the benefits of having a strong, positive, can-do attitude, and a good sense of humor and laughter as the supreme coping skills when life throws you a bunch of lemons.

Living on Ensure® and beginning chemotherapy, I needed to watch comedies, tell funny stories, and focus on preparing for my training in Las Vegas. After two chemo infusions and a major allergic reaction, I created a new vocabulary for “gentle chemo” and told my oncologist “no more.” With the aid of other treatment modalities, I went to Las Vegas. I help middle school health teachers learn how to teach health subjects using evidenced-based humor and improvisational exercises. I got a standing ovation.

Work Stopped:
That was early June. I was hospitalized within 24 hours after returning from that trip. Humor to the rescue! I received Great medical care, and I was resurrected! In the hospital, I distributed clown noses to nurses and aides. I distributed “The Joy of Living…The Journal that Inspires YOU to Live Life Laughing” (Trieber, 2007) to every nurse who took care of me. I walked the halls wearing “Minnie Mouse Ears” and my fellow patients’ frowns turned into smiles (even staff moods changed as they laughed off stress).

There were many complications and surgeries in the ensuing months. I was living at the bottom of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (biological and physiological needs). I couldn’t work. I wasn’t laughing very much. Yes, and I was also very blessed with continuous loving support, kindness, and prayers from my family, and friends from all over the country, and the extended families I have developed from work and professional organizations. I was healing.

Regrouped and Redefined Training Mission:
In August I was beginning to climb up Maslow’s ladder. I’d survived abdominal abscesses and several surgeries. I was energized enough to think about how I was going to achieve my mission of helping people live life with joy and enthusiasm and stop complaining about everything. My new focus became Healing with Wit and Wisdom. I wanted to get my “The Joy of Living…The Journal that Inspires YOU to Live Life Laughing” book mass produced by a major association or organization. The hospital nurses, the home health nurse, and doctors really liked this book. They knew many patients and caregivers could experience the healing benefits of keeping a joy of living journal and being inspired from the humorous introduction, the one-liners, and inspirational quotations.

I met with several pharmaceutical representatives to see if they would be interested in buying the journal to help patients who use their products to enhance the healing process. I sent it to the pancreatic cancer action network (PanCan) and they bought 20 books and may purchase more depending on how initial sales for their store go. I also wanted to create new CDs, a Tip Booklet, an E-book, a series of podcasts, and start a new business blog. Sure, I can do this!

Along the way, I discovered a cancer support community called Hopewell Cancer Support. Hopewell has support groups for all kinds of cancer, and classes to help cancer survivors heal. I learned the difference between healing and curing in a broad sense. I learned that I had to attend to my mind, body, and spirit in order to feel whole and harness positive energy. Eating more whole foods and minimizing refined sugar became the standard operating eating procedure. I began to attend Gentle Hatha Yoga and Mindfulness Meditation classes several times a week. I began to read about intuitive healing, healing from within, the healing power of the mind, mindfulness meditation, and began acupuncture. I’ve got plenty of Yang; I need more Yin!

The End Of 2007 and Beginning Of 2008:
My positive attitude is intact. I go to “cancer talks” at area hospitals. I introduce myself as a “cancer survivor” and talk about: “Healing with Wit and Wisdom”. I facilitated training sessions in October and December, 2007.

I am alive, and am getting more inquiries to facilitate training at hospital sponsored education sessions for September, October and November of 2008. This is a good feeling and a feeling of confidence about having the energy to facilitate training.

I’ve created a social networking blog called Cancer Rocks ( Soon there will be a business blog about Cancer Rocks and my availability to facilitate training on “Healing with Wit and Wisdom. The tip booklet on “Healing with Wit and Wisdom” (or maybe you will send me a better title) is in progress.

Adversity is a great teacher if we give ourselves permission to learn, grow, and accept what life gives us. Situations do not change, only our relationships with them. I continue to live with zest and jest, and enjoy the journey.

Open your heart, let go of your fears, and inspire your staff to bring all of their gifts to work.

Lessons Learned:

! Be open to infinite opportunities to contribute your gifts to the world, your employees, your customers

! Be able to detach from expected outcomes and have energy to discover new productive paths

! When I pray, I am talking to God

! When I meditate, I am listening to God

! Life force is breath: concentrate on the breath and harness positive energy

! Live in the present moment without judgment

! Choose in any given moment what to pay attention to

! Thoughts matter and what we think colors our experiences

! Life experiences are impermanent… no need to waste energy or worry

! Use guided visualization to drop into my body and heal every cell

! Life is perfect as it is.

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Get more tips on retaining great employees from TRAINING SYSTEMS.

The Joy of Living…The Journal that Inspires YOU to Live Life Laughing, by Roz Trieber
Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness, by Jon Kabat-Zinn
Order both by emailing or calling 800-469-3560. Mention RIR for 10% off.

Tools: Recruit Inspire Train Retain

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March 6-7, 2008
3rd Annual ASAE Conference on International Operations, Marriott Learning Complex, Ronald Reagan Building/International Trade Center, Washington, DC,

March 9-13, 2008
Exhibitor 2008 National Educational Conference for Trade Show and Corporate Event Marketers, Mandalay Bay Conference Center, Las Vegas, NV, 

March 10-11, 2008
Inc. 5000 Grow Your Company Conference, Savannah, GA,

April 2-5, 2008
Association of Job Search Trainers Annual Conference, Tampa FL, 

April 5-8, 2008
International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI), NY Marriott Marquis Hotel,
April 23-25, 2008
International Mentoring Association Conference, Las Vegas, NV, 

April 21-24, 2008
Christian Management Association Annual National Conference, Hyatt Regency Dallas at Reunion, 

May 4-7, 2008
Training Magazine Leadership Summit, Rancho Bernardo Inn, San Diego, CA, 

June 22-25, 2008
SHRM 60th Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago IL, 

July 26-28, 2008
WorldFuture 2008: Seeing the Future Through New Eyes, Washington, D.C., 


February 8, 2008
EXHIBITOR and Corporate EVENT Magazines Awards,

US Chamber’s 2008 Small Business of the Year Award: for info or to apply, go to

ASAE’s 2008 Associations Advance America Awards: apply at

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K has great tips on green cleaning.
K & will help you get off junk mail lists.
K has tips on every facet of green living.
K gives advice on replacing old light bulbs w/energy efficient bulbs.
K provides comprehensive "green power" info.
K urges the use of recycled paper.
K helps you plant trees to save the environment.

Going Green At Work
find ecofriendly building materials and services at http://www.rateitgreen.comom
buy ecofriendly office supplies at http://www.thegreenoffice.comomm 
work from home ideas at 
find jobs and volunteer opportunities with socially responsible organizations at 
Reduce paperwork by invoicing, & paying employees & bills electronically
TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.  now invoices exclusively by email and is close to paying everyone
         by credit card, PayPal, or automatic debit from checking account).
Encourage employees to use public transportation.
Use ceiling fans to reduce air-conditioning costs
Reduce your hot water heater temperature by 2 degrees and insulate the tank.
Use energy-saving light bulbs

B.I.G. ON BOOKS is an organization that promotes literacy in underprivileged countries, primarily Africa, Eastern Europe, and Southeast Asia. You can donate books through most Rotary Clubs. B.I.G. also accepts cash donations. Send email to Steve Frantzich at for more information.

Kicking World Hunger is the biggest soccer juggle-a-thon in the world (uh, that we know of), much like a walk-a-thon, but more fun! Participants sign up to juggle a soccer ball thousands of times while raising money to provide hope for children and communities that desperately need it.

Charity Navigator ( is an in-depth, searchable guide to more than 5,000 charities worldwide that aims to encourage "intelligent giving". They rate charities based on their total expenses, revenues, and organizational capacity. If you want to give, but the recent slew of charity scandals has you feeling skeptical about where your money would go.

Take Pride T-Shirts ( was founded by a group of friends who all share the belief that the more difficult the mission facing our military, the more deserving they are of our thanks and support. Each unique shirt design provides a glimpse into the life of a different US Service member who served in Iraq or Afghanistan and is hand silk-screened. The message of the shirts isn’t political, it's about acknowledging, celebrating, and taking pride in the spirit of young Americans who despite facing an extremely difficult job and unpleasant conditions, nonetheless strive to do their job well. Take Pride gives at least 20% of profits to charities and causes that assist combat veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan.

Set a reminder to visit daily and click this button to help underprivileged women get mammograms. helps you find organizations in your area that spark your interest in volunteering. fights for family-friendly programs and policies at work. honors the heroes and victims of 9/11, by giving ideas for good deeds to perform. helps entrepreneurs by connecting them with backers for short term loans and both make sure the organizations you’re supporting are legit and give the bulk of their money to their mission

Global Volunteers (
You can:
select by type of work project
select by country and date
select by service program conditions
select by cost

Recycle yogurt containers and old toothbrushes!
Recycline’ Preserve partnered with Stonyfield Farm and is recycling yogurt containers into toothbrush handles. Old toothbrushes are used to make plastic lumber for picnic tables. Go to for details.

Responsibly Dispose of Your Old Electronics
Donate Old Cell Phones
911 Cell Phone Bank provide free emergency cell phones to needful people through partnerships with law enforcement organizations,

Recycle PCs, cell phones, printers, CDs diskettes, etc., with GreenDisk. For $29.95, they send a 70-pound-capacity box. When it’s full, you download postage from their website and ship it back. Your “junk” then goes to workshops for the disabled and are refurbished.  http://www.greendisk.comm

Donate PCs to National Cristina Foundation,; Goodwill,, Salvation Army,

Recycle PCs and other computer products at Hewlett Packard and Dell. See their websites for details.

Several other places to recycle old PCs:,,

Find local Electronics recyclers at and

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you can:

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* Get answers to your employee recruiting, inspiring, retaining, & training questions from our experts!


Copyright 2008 TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. All rights reserved.


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**We’ll be back next month with more great tips, ideas, success stories, and information to help you recruit, inspire, train, & retain great employees!

RECRUIT, INSPIRE & RETAIN contains links to websites operated by organizations other than TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.  These links are for your convenience and we assume no responsibility for the content or operations of those sites.

RECRUIT, INSPIRE & RETAIN TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC., published 12 times/year. Editor: Carolyn B. Thompson, Data Entry: Patti Lowczyk (Lowczyk Secretarial), HTML: Debbie Daw (http://www.helpquestdomains.comcom). Visit us at soon!

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