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Nonprofits: The Importance of Culture within your Organization

November 14, 2018

 

Respect, value, a sense of community, authentic leadership. Those were the resounding themes in describing a healthy work culture by a panel at the most recent Covington Business Council Nonprofit Lunch and Learn, in partnership with sponsor Von Lehman CPA & Advisory Firm. 

The panel was comprised of Danielle Amrine, Executive Director, Welcome House; Ashley Simpson, HR Manager, ProLink Staffing and Karen Nelson, Director, Tier 1 Performance Solutions.  All three companies made the 2018 Cincinnati Business Courier Best Places to Work List. 

Amrine says Welcome House’s work culture is extremely important because they work with homeless women and families in crisis. “It’s a family (the employees).  How do you treat one another. People are not in this line of work for the money.” 

Nelson said, “Human beings like to belong, they like to fit in the work environment. Companies need to be clear about what ‘a fit’ is. (for instance) These are the characteristics of people who thrive here.” 

Simpson says ProLink doesn’t boast robust employee benefits but differentiates by its transparent culture. “We ask them why they are here. What kind of relationship do you want with your manager? What are your goals? We look for people with positive energy.” 

The group also talked about inexpensive to free perks they offer their workers.  For Welcome House it’s a Fantasy Football League, an afternoon with rescue dogs and cats which are brought to the office or yoga/meditation classes.  ProLink started a book club for managers. Tier 1 has social media groups for special hobby interests. 

Finally the group talked about giving employers empowerment to do their work. Nelson described it best in how Tier 1 tries to achieve it. “Teams are trained to be self-directed.  They like the latitude of doing it their own in reaching the desired outcome.”

 


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