When we see or experience two people or two concepts that are silky smooth, fine tuned, natural, beautiful….we may say (or hear), “you know…they’re like Fred and Ginger.” Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers knew how to dance.
In Culture isn’t enough, the Fred and Ginger are Culture AND Brand.
Timely, especially as we work on our company meeting agenda where the word “brand” is spotlighted.
On the topic of Culture, it’s true, “happy, engaged employees do indeed produce better results.” Employees get and stay engaged for a variety of reasons. Having the chance to do what you do best every day, hearing appreciation, getting coaching and honest feedback so you can grow and be successful…the things that turn you on, turn on your team, too.
“But if you want to do more than survive — if you want to increase your competitiveness, to create real value for your customers and employees, to future-proof your business — having a good, generic culture isn’t enough. You should cultivate a culture that is aligned and integrated with your brand.”
How to do this:
1. Adopt a single brand purpose to inspire, focus, and guide everything your organization does. Start with why your organization exists (not what you do or how you do it). And why is NEVER “to make money.” Customers do not seek us out because we do something to make money. MG’s why? Articulated by many in many different ways — but all seem to center around wanting to make lives better (our customers, our employees, our growers, and on and on).
2. Articulate one set of core values and use them to shape what you do inside your organization and out.
3. Check in on how you are doing. Are you performing well in both areas? Are employees engaged and feeling good about their work; and are you making lives better every day?
Can you hear the music and see the silhouettes gliding across the dance floor?
1-2 red beets
1-2 golden beets
2T fresh mint, thinly sliced
1/4c pistachios, chopped
1/4c fresh orange juice
1T white balsamic vinegar
1T local honey
2T olive oil
to taste s&p
1. Spiralize beets, cut beet noodles in half
2. Place beets in bowl with mint & pistachios
3. Combine dressing ingredients in jar, shake to blend
4. Pour dressing over beets, toss
Note: can prep the day before, but wait to combine with dressing until close to serving
I love our mantra, Make a Difference Every Day. I love wearing my MG tee shirt that reminds me to set this daily intention and helps me share the message with everyone around me. And yet, sometimes, I fall into the trap of measuring the difference on the wrong scale. While some days it’s huge — something you plan for, commit to, and do (like organizing a full day of service in your community; helping build a Habitat house, etc.); the rest of the days, it’s not.
“We must not, in trying to think about how we can make a big difference, ignore the small daily difference we can make which, over time, add up to big differences that we often cannot foresee.”
— Marion Wright Edelman
And that’s what makes this mindset…and our actions that support it, every day…so magical.
6 slices thick cut bacon, chopped
4 cans, 1 ea: cannellini, black, kidney, pinto
3 ripe peaches, chopped
1½c bbq sauce
½c maple syrup
½c bourbon or apple cider
1/4c balsamic vinegar
2T grainy dijon
1t ea chili powder, smoked paprika, ginger
to taste s&p
chopped fresh basil
1. In dutch oven, cook bacon until crisp, 5 mins
2. Add other ingredients, stir well
3. Bake on 350°F for 45 mins
4. Garnish with fresh basil
I have been a devoted Fitbit wearer for many years now and am always interested in what research has to say about the effects of the devices on not only our weight but other health related behaviors. Despite my dedicated commitment to achieving my 10,000 steps a day, I am under no illusion that achieving my step goals will result in automatic weight loss. In truth, my weight has remained relatively unchanged throughout my years of Fitbit use. Some may find this frustrating, but my purpose in using this device is to remind myself to move throughout the day rather than the goal of weight loss. The health benefits of movement throughout our day has been well documented and this is motivation enough for me. Regarding weight loss, research has shown that fitness tracker wearers are no more likely to lose weight than non-wearers. Part of the reason for this may be due to the fact that users rely on the devices’ daily calorie burn number to determine how much food they eat. Additionally, a recent study showed that 7 popular fitness trackers reported inaccurate caloric burn estimates (the number which many rely on to estimate calories in vs. calorie out). So, what is a fitness device devotee like myself to do?
Food First, Exercise Second:
research has consistently shown that diet is more important than exercise for weight loss.
Avoid Food Rewards:
food should never be a reward for steps walked or calories burned. Use non-food rewards to celebrate success.
It’s All Relative:
almost all monitoring devices (scales, diet trackers, exercise equipment monitors, wearable fitness trackers, etc.)-have margins of error. Consider the data relative and only use this data as one tool to help you achieve your fitness goals, be it weight loss or just overall health. Data is most useful when it is viewed and compared over time, rather than relying on one variable alone.
Waist vs. wrist:
for the die-hard data fans, waist wearable devices are more likely to be accurate than their wrist device counterparts.
Remember the goal of a fitness tracker should be achieving good health, not weight loss. While a fitness tracker can be a useful tool in your weight loss journey (if that is your goal) never rely on this instrument as a single tool for achieving success.
Life will always have contrast to it. Day, night. Joy, grief. Beginner, expert. Hot, cold.
Some days we feel like we’re “in the groove” – everything is falling into place and going well. And some days — well — just the opposite.
When someone comes to you and says, “this isn’t working, things are bad,” what do you do?
From Don’t say ‘it’s not that bad’ to someone who thinks it’s bad:
Say, “you know, you’re right.” And then ask,
Treat people who think things are bad like intelligent competent team members (because hopefully they are!)
1lg fresh avocado, diced
1c strawberries, diced
1lg navel oranges. diced
1/2c grape halves
1/4c red onion, finely diced
½t+ jalapeno pepper, seeded, finely diced
1½T fresh lime juice
1½T olive oil
3T fresh cilantro, chopped
1. Combine all ingredients, stir in avocado last, chill
Great accompaniment to fish, chicken & pork dishes!
With all the confusing messages about healthy eating & nutrition science I decided this important topic warranted two separate blogs. Last month’s blog focused on nutrition priorities and this month I will discuss some of the popular nutrition headlines.
Gluten Free-the cure all?
No one can deny the current popularity of gluten free diets. Books & celebrities are advocating for a gluten free diet for “clean living” and weight loss. What the promoters fail to point out is that cutting out gluten containing foods like cookies, cakes & deep fried battered foods is a positive nutritional change that results in fewer calories consumed (hence weight loss). This effect is not directly related to gluten consumption. Additionally, three large studies have shown that people with the highest gluten intake were actually 20 % less likely to develop diabetes. Furthermore, these studies debunk the claim that eating gluten causes weight gain as evident by the finding that there was no relationship between gluten intake and weight. There is no benefit to avoiding gluten if you do not have a gluten sensitivity or allergy.
Health Halo Package Claims-Help or Hinder?
While food label reading is a component of healthy eating, it may unfortunately bring out the unwanted side effect of health halos. A halo effect on a certain food or brand causes the person to perceive the product as healthy, thus resulting in overconsumption of said product. Health claims on a food package does not mean that food provides nutritional benefits, as these claims can be misleading. Always check the Nutrition Facts panel & pay attention to portion sizes. Healthy, unprocessed food does not contain (nor need) a health claim.
Does Healthy Eating Cost More?
The claim “healthy eating is too expensive” is often cited as a reason for consuming cheap, processed convenience food. Current research contradicts this belief by showing that people who prepare home cooked meals engage in healthier eating habits & actually spend less money on food. Frequent eating out is associated with poorer health habits. Processed, convenience “health” foods actually cost more money than preparing a home cooked meal. If you struggle with ideas for healthy meal preparation, research quick and easy ways to prepare meals at home. The Internet contains an overabundance of healthy recipes & tips-just know where to look. Explore websites such as Ellie Krieger’s Real Good Food, Cooking Light & Eating Well (to name just a few).
The research on nutrition & health will be ever evolving, this much we know. However, we can be confident that the basic principles of healthy eating won’t change, consuming real, whole foods with a variety of plant rich foods including fruits, vegetables & whole grains.
“Treat others as you would have them treat you.” That’s a modern adaptation of the Golden Rule and one that we’ve probably heard a number of times throughout our life. It’s an ok model. Certainly better than treating others worse than you would have them treat you. But, this article suggests the Golden Rule doesn’t work as well as we may think.
Why is that ineffective? Because it’s based on just this teeny, tiny assumption that the whole universe wants to be treated the way I want to be treated. That’s not the case. We’ve got to learn how to treat others as they want to be treated, which is the Platinum Rule.
We all see the world through our own filters. These filters are unique to us and while we know they must exist, most of us are unaware of them as we move through our day to day interactions.
“Filter – shift” is a concept where we learn to recognize our individual filters and shift our behaviors or responses to them (in other words, our bias) so we can be more effective and have better relationships with one another.
2lbs ripe plum tomatoes, cut ½
2 cloves garlic, whole
1 carrot, large pieces
1 med onion, thick slices
1-2T brown sugar
2T olive oil
to taste s&p
2c veggie stock
4T basil pesto
touch of half & half, optional
fresh basil, chopped
1. Preheat oven to 350°F
2. Toss tomatoes, garlic & onions with oil, sugar, s&p
3. Spread in 1 layer on baking sheet, roast 30 mins
4. Transfer to large pot, add veggie broth, bring to boil
5. Reduce heat, simmer 20 mins, reducing liquid by ⅓
6. Stir in pesto
7. Using immersion blender, purée until smooth
8. Can add “touch of” half & half for more creaminess
9. Garnish with freshly chopped basil