For the EVOLution of Business

Leaders as Cultural Gardeners with Jaime Eisenhauer of Innovative

Episode Summary

In a follow up to our most downloaded episode with Innovative Owner and CEO Justin Copie, we sit down with VP of People and Culture Jaime Eisenhauer to hear about HOW their "cultural gardening" has led to multiple Top Workplaces Awards and Great Place to Work certifications, not to mention a fun office and 40% growth! Tune in to this episode for Jaime's ACTIONABLE insights on: -Screening for emotional intelligence in the hiring process -Why on-boarding starts before the employee's first day on the job -Lessons learned from rolling out unlimited paid time off and other perks -Getting feedback on the culture both from surveys and personal conversations -Diversity and inclusion at Innovative and in the broader tech industry Does your company have a head of People and Culture? After you listen, Jaime just might convince you that you should! Jaime is not keen on pom-poms, rah-rah, and ice cream socials. Though her high energy and obsession with serving others may fool you, she’s actually an entrepreneur in HR clothing. As Vice President of People and Culture at Innovative, Jaime is responsible for securing the best talent and she sees the business value in creating and maintaining a rewarding workplace culture. From the first interaction a candidate has with Innovative, Jaime provides an incredible user experience. She is eager to make the application simple and user-friendly. Onboarding new hires, which is typically filled with frustration and chaos, is interactive, seamless, and, yes, even fun at Innovative. Jaime is an aficionado for driving a return on investment in everything ‘people’ and knows that the positive impact of these seemingly minor touchpoints ensures that each new hire is set up for success and fulfillment. Her 10+ year work experience, knowledge of the tech industry, and high emotional intelligence fuels real business results that has propelled Innovative to a leadership position in IT consulting. Jaime earned both her Bachelor’s degree and MBA at St. John Fisher College.

Episode Notes

[2:15] Working a stable job at Wegmans with a great culture, but looking for a challenge
[4:00] Differences between maintaining a great culture to shaping and codifying culture
[6:45] Lessons learned and advice for writing down your culture
[8:20] The "Four Truths" at Innovative
[10:45] Screening for "learn-it-alls" and emotional intelligence in the hiring process
"I'll never hire someone who won't increase our average."
"We're people plus technology. That culture piece is always screened out first."
[15:30] Starting the onboarding process before their first day on the job
"One of the best things you can do for employees when they start is show them how their role impacts the strategy and the long-term vision for the organization, because it creates instant connection for them to say 'I'm a part of something bigger and the more successful I am in my role the more I can impact the organization for the long haul.'"
[20:15] Scaling culture as you grow with more employees and new offices
[23:30] The bottom-line impacts of culture - 40% growth since culture focus in 2014, 5+ year employee retention compared to 18 month industry average
[26:30] Lessons learned from unsuccessful cultural programs and iniatives
[30:00] Lessons learned rolling out unlimited paid time off
[34:00] Getting feedback on the culture: both custom and benchmarked surveys, plus getting the pulse in person around the office
[37:00] Why innovative shares culture survey feedback on their website
"There's a lot of companies out there that put on the faquade that they have it all figured out, but the more that we go first and show that we don't and that we always have things to work on, people will follow that model."
[40:00] The importance of following up from feedback and how it happens at Innovative
[43:00] How Jaime measures success in her role as VP of People and Culture
[45:15] Self-promotion process
[47:30] From "soft skills" to "power skills"
[49:20] Building emotional intelligence in leaders
[53:30] Diversity and inclusion at Innovative and in Tech
Rochester Beacon article that interviews Jaime about women in Tech
"You have to holistically look at the belief structure of your organization. That's where it starts. You may bring in a lot of people that look, act and talk differently, but if the welcome isn't there and they don't feel like they're part of the family...they'll very quickly fail, and that's on us as leaders."
[58:30] Why more companies should have a head of people and culture

Listen to the podcast episode with Innovative Owner and CEO Justin Copie:

Listen to Jaime's DisruptHR talk here: