Recruit, Inspire & Retain

August 2004

Ideas for "Marketing" and Providing "Customer Service" to Current and Potential Employees

Great Training for Great Employees
800-469-3560 FAX 815-469-0886


bullet Recruiting Is A Process – Not An Event!
bullet Who's Wearing Fun Meters?
bullet What’s In Your Desk Drawer? — Prize Opportunity!
bullet Cool Calls
bullet Using Stories to Make Connections
bullet How to Decide Which Training Vendor You Need
bullet “Pounding Down” Your Employees’ & Your Costs For Health Insurance
bullet Things to Do This Month/Conferences to Attend/Ways to Volunteer/Give (Call 800-469-3560 or E-mail For Ways to Celebrate these listed Special Days of the Month!)

You Flew Your Flag in July...
Some facts about Old Glory

Colors: a term used to refer to the flag itself.

Color guards: the folks who raise, lower, and safeguard the flag in a flag-raising ceremony.

Halyard: the rope used to raise and lower the flag.

Union: the upper inner corner of the flag.

Title 4, United States Code, chapter 1, sections 1 and 2, and Executive Order 10834: outlines the uses and abuses of the flag and provides instructions on the actual hoisting, lowering, and flying of the American flag.

Meaning behind the colors:
White: signifies purity and innocence
Red: signifies hardiness and valor
Blue: signifies vigilance, perseverance, and justice

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Recruiting Is A Process – Not An Event!

August is Recruitment Month — Test your recruitment process readiness by circling
Yes or No:

Yes No Are you actively and continuously selling your organization to potential employees?
Yes No Do you have a file of potential employees to call when you have an opening?
Yes No Have you reviewed your Recruitment Plan lately?
Yes No Do you have a Recruitment Plan?!
Yes No Is your organization attractive to potential employees?
Yes No Do your employees rave about working for your organization?
Yes No Are your benefit and compensation plans enticing to potential employees?
Yes No Can you accurately describe your organization’s mission and vision to potential and current employees?

If you answered “No” to even one of the above, RUSH to your phone and call 800-469-3560 for a Free! consultation with one of our highly qualified Human Resources consultants!

CBT RECRUITMENT AND RETENTION CONSULTANTS, a division of TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC., can help you do all that’s necessary to answer a resounding YES! to all the above — and improve your recruiting strategies!

  Straight Talk for Employers: Recruit, Inspire & Retain Great Employees (audiotape set with 30 5-minute segments packed with ideas — including 4 on recruitment planning & interviewing) by TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. Carolyn B. Thompson
  Get the Best, by TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC. Cathy Fyock 
Both available at  (10% off by typing “RIR” in Special Instructions) Or e-mail

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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


* Customers, staff, and colleagues of Carter’s Upholstery in Pocatello, ID


What’s In Your Desk Drawer?

Another fun way to get a TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC.. prize! Email every “different than the usual office supplies” item in your desk drawer.  And we’ll print the full list next month.

Prizes to anyone over 10 really fun & unique items.

PowerPoint screen show that features 40 humorous posters that are pre-set to work on “auto-pilot”. Makes a great “WELCOME” message or enhancement to your session break. Runs about 5 minutes, and is set to automatically recycle. You can add in your own slides. (a great place to slip in your objectives!) Get your PowerPoint screen show here!
BUY PACKS of inspirational posters. (Do a Product Search for POSTERS, then look for Training Room Posters (30/pack).)

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* Carolyn B. Thompson, President of TRAINING SYSTEMS, INC., was interviewed for the article, Team Building, in the July 2004 Meetings West magazine.

* Scott Baxter, Page Employment, while reading Interviewing Techniques For Managers, remarked:
“I have just started reading your book Interviewing Techniques for Managers and am at the part about communications styles. Two weeks ago, I was introduced to the four styles you mention during a seminar, although the names were different (Analytical was called Focuser, for example). The instructor, after going into the details on the different types and what needs to be done in order to communicate effectively with each other, mentioned that at another of his seminars, one of the participants there pointed out a quick, reasonably accurate method for determining which of the four types a person is by simply looking at the person's face during a conversation:
eye contact, no Smile = Analytical
eye contact, smile = Driver
no eye contact, no smile = Amiable
no eye contact, smile = Expressive
So far, it seems to work.”

Carolyn emailed back: “One of the cool things about all the styles that the psychologists have developed is that they do correlate. It makes it easy to understand various types of behavior – since each was developed for a slightly different reason. I like the idea of correlating with facial expressions but my experience of the styles used in the book is a bit different than what you listed. Of course, this is not scientific but I’d say:
eye contact, no Smile = Driver
eye contact, smile = Expressive
no eye contact, no smile = Analytical
no eye contact, smile = Amiable”

Scott emailed back: “I will need to pull out the profile questions used in the seminar and the descriptions of each of the four types and compare them to those in your book. During the seminar, there was no doubt that I am a Focuser, but now you have raised doubts in my mind about whether I am Analytical or a Driver. In any event, you may certainly use my name and comments in your newsletter and please add me to your mailing list. By tomorrow, I should send to you the information I had from the seminar so that you can better compare what may be two similar, but not identical, methods of identifying communications styles. The seminar leader mentioned the Golden Rule and how it does not apply to communications, but did not introduce the Platinum Rule, at least not with that name. He did make it clear that it is important not that you treat me as you would want to be treated, but that you do it as I would want you to. My brother (also in this business) and I were talking about this yesterday and he is one of those grab them around the shoulders, shake their hands for five minutes, really chummy type of person, while I am more the "touch me and you die." As I showed him your book and explained the Platinum Rule, he quickly understood the need to better understand where a person stands before letting his normal behavior kill all prospects of effective communication.”

Thanks, Scott, for additional ideas on how to recognize the best way to communicate with a person.

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Using Stories to Make Connections

Remember our last article on corporate storytelling Learning From Stories? Here, thanks to our reader George Buck’s suggestion are even more ways to inspire using the vehicle of stories:

One of the key benefits of storytelling is that stories enable us to form connections on a deeper level than we normally do in this fast-paced, "don't have time, gotta do this now" world. In addition to data such as spouses and children's names, the town/community in which they live and their personality traits, do you know what motivates the people you work with? Do you know what they value most? Are you aware of experiences they have had that have made a significant impact on their lives?

When you listen to stories of people’s life experiences, you connect on a deeper, more meaningful level — and the results are powerful. The people throughout your organization work together better, become truly committed to one another, and are able, in turn, to serve your customers more effectively.

Wyeth Corporation has made storytelling an integral part of The Co. Executive Leadership Development Program. The impact of having their leaders share personal stories with one another has been overwhelmingly positive and helped to fuel constructive dialogue among teams about values, principles, and share vision." Tim Fidler, executive director of Leadership Development at Wyeth reported, "Having Wyeth leaders share their stories with their teams adds an entirely new dimension to Wyeth's vision and values."

In addition to making great connections through the stories, they learned the art of storytelling. Now, instead of lecturing their employees, leaders became storytellers and coaches, and people throughout the organization became more open with one another.

From “connecting Corporate Executives Through Personal Leadership Stories”, Clark & Company 1991

Want the Benefits But Concerned Your Staff Won’t Be Comfortable Telling Their Own Stories?
Use already existing stories to get the discussion going. Numerous books are available to help you link existing stories to just about any situation:

* Goldilocks on Management, by Gloria Gilbert Mayer & Thomas Mayer
* Peanut Butter and Jelly Management, by Chris and Reina Komisarjevsky
* All I Need To Know In Life I Learned From Romance Novels, by Victoria M. Johnson
* Shakespeare On Management, by J. M. Shafritz
* Inside Out: Using Classic Children’s Stories for Personal and Professional Growth, by Myron J Radio & Rod N Johnson
* Real Power: Business Lessons from the Tao Te Ching, by James A Autry & Stephen Mitchell
* The Leadership Lessons of Jesus, by Bob Briner
* The Leadership Genius of Jesus, by William Beausay
* More Leadership Lessons of Jesus, by Bob Briner
* The Management Lessons of Jesus, by Bob Briner
* Moses on Leadership: or Why Everyone is a Leader, by Richard Koch, Andrew Campbell
* Moses on Management: 50 Leadership Lessons from the Greatest Manager of All Time, by David Baron
* Lincoln on Leadership: Executive Strategies for Tough Times, by Donald T. Phillips
* The Founding Fathers on Leadership: Classic Teamwork in Changing Times, Donald T. Phillips
Around the Corporate Campfire: How Great Leaders Use Stories to Inspire Success, by Evelyn Clark
Managing by Storying Around, by David Armstrong

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How to Decide Which Training Vendor You Need

Steve Todd, Sr. Manager, Sales Training & Development, created an easy to implement system for wading through the glut of training companies:

So I’m sitting in my office one day last spring, minding my own business, when the phone rings. It’s a training vendor. We chat for a moment, I ask him to send me a package, and I wish him a hurried goodbye as my second line rings. It’s another vendor. This one gives me a decent pitch and I ask her to send me a package. I have to wish her another hurried goodbye because my first line is now ringing. Another vendor. What’s going on here?

The list of training providers is long. So long, in fact, that it can be paralyzing to find the best one. Over the past year, my colleagues and I have received hundreds of phone calls from training and consulting companies who claim they have the best solution. Answering these calls is time consuming and often doesn’t help us achieve our objectives.

We decided it was time to come up with a system for screening such solicitations. But first, we had to determine three things:
• our short- and long-term training requirements;
• the best way to leverage resources to maximize training impact;
• and how to make educated choices.

My six colleagues and I locked ourselves in a small, poorly ventilated, windowless room, which provided us with the motivation to get all of the ideas quickly on the board. We brought our annual and three-year brand plans as references and began throwing out ideas. We asked ourselves questions such as:

What training do we need for each brand?
What can we leverage and use across brands?
Are there resources we can share?

The room was getting hot, so we broke to allow fresh air to circulate. After 15 minutes, we came back refreshed and began a collegial debate. We soon reached a consensus and drafted a list of priorities, which we then used to develop a methodology to vet a list of 70 vendors whose names and e-mail addresses we had accumulated.

Here’s our four-step process:
CONDUCT A SURVEY. With our needs identified, we e-mailed a survey to each provider, asking for examples of how they had delivered on similar customer needs.

EVALUATE THE SURVEYS. Did the providers clearly demonstrate in written form their ability to meet those needs? If not, there was no need for further consideration. We eliminated 80% of the providers through this step alone!

FOLLOW UP. Of those who appeared to meet our needs, we called each and discussed their responses in more detail, looking to confirm that they could clearly articulate how they met those needs as stated in the survey. We eliminated another 8% this way.

SOLICIT PRESENTATIONS. Those who could clearly and convincingly articulate their successes were invited to present their capabilities. We coached them on what need they were to address and the audience that would be participating.

Based on the presentations, we established a list of eight approved vendors, now posted on our internal Web site. We have a clear idea of their capabilities and are in the process of determining which to use and for what projects.

From this point, it will be up to each of us to make the decision based on scope, cost, and our ability to partner with those on our list.

Now we have partners who have demonstrated that their capabilities correspond to our needs, and we will be able to follow similar steps for our future initiatives.

From Sales & Marketing Management magazine, 12/03

The Training Manager’s Quick-Tip Sourcebook: Surefire Tools, Tactics & Strategies to Solve Common Training Challenge, by Susan C. Patterson
ABCs of e-Learning, by Brooke Broadbent (w/chapter on choosing vendors)

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“Pounding Down” Your Employees’ & Your Costs For Health Insurance

At VSM Abrasives, an industrial sandpaper maker in O’Fallon, MO, the talk at the water coolers this last year hasn’t been about politics or favorite sitcoms. It’s been whether Gone in 60 Days would beat out the Lightweights and Johnny Craig for most pounds lost.

As a way to encourage health and productivity and reduce health-insurance costs, VSM launched a companywide contest in the spring of 2002 called “Get Healthy for Life”, designed to motivate employees to slim down and shape up. Of the company’s 135 employees, 100 signed up to join
5-member teams, each self-named, to see who could lose the most weight, collectively, in 3 months. Weigh-ins were held every Monday morning, with the individual goals set at 5 pounds per person, or 25 per group, for the quarter.

“The team concept was the biggest motivator,” says Karen Gailey, VSM’s marketing assistant who helped run the contest. “If you didn’t lose your five, you’d bring the whole team down.”

As it was, the Five Fat Sensitive Men took the prize, at 113 lbs., and won $100 and a day off with pay for each team member.

With obesity costing American companies about $12.7 billion a year in lost productivity and medical expenses, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, many companies are starting similar-type programs to combat the problem.

VSM’s program is so popular, it’s become a regular feature, with employees now weighing in each quarter and earning $25 and a day off with pay for simply keeping off the weight they initially lost.

From Human Resource Executive magazine.


The Healthy Scorecard: Delivering Breakthrough Results That Employees & Investors Will Love, by Danielle Pratt


21 Ways to Create Healthy, Happy & Motivated Employees!, by Mark Robinson


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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


Admit You’re Happy Month
August 2-8: Smile Week
August 1-7: Simplify Your Life Week

August 4: Chocolate Chip Day
August 8: Cheesecake Day & Drop A Squash Onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Night (how about a squash cheesecake?)
August 12: Thank You Day
August 17: No. 2 Pencil Day
August 25: Healthy Lifestyle Day
August 30: Toasted Marshmallow Day
August 31: Eat Outside Day
August 27: Mother Theresa’s Birthday (1910)

Dave Meier’s Accelerated Learning Training Methods Workshop, 
August 16-18, Hyatt Regency, Chicago, IL
September 13-15, Embassy Suites, Denver, CO
September 27-29, AmeriSuites, Dallas, TX

Presenting Data and Information, given by Edward Tufte
August 24-25, Hilton Chicago & Towers
August 26, Indianapolis Marriott Downtown
August 27, Hyatt Regency Louisville

2004 Regional Seminars: “Doing Business God’s Way: Transforming People and Organizations”, facilitated by author Dennis Peacock
September 10-11, Louisville, KY
September 24-25, Seattle, WA

August 7, 2004
LA-ISPI Demystifying Webinars, http:/  

August 14-17, 2004
American Society of Association Executives Annual Meeting and Exposition, Minneapolis, MN, 

September 8-9, 2004
HSMAI’s 15th Annual Affordable Meetings National Conference & Exposition, Washington Convention Center, Washington, D.C., 

September 13-15, 2004
ER Expo 2004 Fall, Boston, MS, 

September 28-30, 2004
The Motivation Show, McCormick Place, Chicago, IL, 

October 11-13, 2004
Training Magazine’s Annual Training Fall Conference & Expo, San Francisco, 

October 12-15, 2004
Strategic HR: Aligning With the Business to Drive Results, The Westin Century Plaza Hotel & Spa, Los Angeles, CA,

October 13-15, 2004
HR Executive’s Technology Conference & Exposition, McCormick Place, Chicago,

October 26-29, 2004
International Coalition of Workplace Ministries (ICWM), Holiday Inn Select, Bloomington, MN, 

October 28, 2004
3rd Annual Chicagoland Learning Leaders Conference, Hamburger University, 


Wondering what to do with the Cash Back Awards you get from your Discover card?
I used this month’s $40 to buy school clothes for a 15 year old (identified by a local mission organization). I’m going to look each month for a way to give to my community with that Cash Back Award.

Give Back as You Buy!
Check out, an online discount-shopping site. A portion of the cost of every product goes to the nonprofit of your choice.

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