Change Management and Churros

By | Culture, Grow Your Career, Healthy Stuff, Life at Daxko, Professional Development, Rewarding Careers, Talent | No Comments

Recently, I had the opportunity to attend a Change Management course through ATD with some coworkers from the Launch and Education team. We spent two full days discussing Change Management and how it relates to our work. We discussed change management theories and split off into groups to dive into how we would apply them to our work. Aside from the educational value, this experience also proved to be an excellent team-building activity.

On Day 1, we indulged in churros – see glorious examples below.

Although we were tired after a day full of information, we still found time to hang out. We ate at a fancy wine and burger shop called Zinburger and made an impression around the Lenox mall in Atlanta.

Upon leaving, a couple of us decided to further explore the city and ended up on Krog Street which is known for its ever-changing graffiti.

I learned much more about my team members on the second day. For starters, we’re a creative bunch. Check out these amazing posters about the characteristics of a “Change Agent”:

Secondly, we’re a fidgety bunch. ATD provides pipe cleaners, dice, and scented markers on the tables for those that need to do something with their hands during class discussions. I was amazed at the creations my teammates made. Interestingly, as I looked around the room, the only people who were fidgeting were people from Daxko. Eventually, it caught on, and others started to create pipe cleaner masterpieces. The real question: do we fidget because we’re creative? Or does fidgeting spark creativity? Either way, seems like we’ve got this down.

At the end of the second day, the class stood in a circle and discussed Change Management quotes that resonated with us. More importantly, we also talked about what our action items would be.

Change Management is important to our company because we are constantly changing, but it is also helpful to have a grasp on the concept because our customers are in a period of change when they decide to implement our software. Understanding the phases they endure in a change process and how we can guide them to a successful result helps us better serve our clients.

It was great to see our culture outside of the walls of Daxko. This offsite excursion reminded me that our culture is contagious and whether or not we realize it, we do an awesome job of embracing change. I can’t wait to take what I’ve learned to create exceptional experiences during times of change for our customers.

“Why not go out on a limb? That’s where the fruit is.” – Will Rogers


Emily V. is a proud dog mom, and Netflix connoisseur, and lives on Daxko’s Engagement Solutions Team.

Somehow I Manage

By | Culture, Free Career Advice, Healthy Stuff, Life at Daxko | No Comments

In the television series The Office, Dwight Schrute is convinced he doesn’t waste any of his company’s time. Learning of this, Jim naturally seeks to distract him. Jim butchers the plotline of the TV show Battlestar Galactica hoping that Dwight will defend his favorite show. Dwight, visibly angry, continues to work in silence as Jim talks about the show’s protagonist, Dumbledore Calrissian, who needs to return the ring back to Mordor. Jim also times Dwight whenever Dwight does non-work related things like sneezing and going to the bathroom. To Jim’s amusement (and amazement), Dwight manages to sneeze with his eyes open as he looks over spreadsheets.

Alas, not all of us can harness Dwight Schrute focus within the hours of the workday. As a member of the Customer Success team, I can speak for everyone when I say that distractions bombard us all day long. And not the Dwight Schrute kind of distractions (although playing pranks on my coworker Jeff is a favorite pastime of mine; he’s such a Dwight). I often think that if I had one more hour of the day, I could accomplish the tasks that remain outstanding. But maybe that’s the wrong way to look at it. Maybe the problem is not the amount of time, but what we choose to do with our time. One of the main reasons we experience the stress of task completion is the distractions that seep into our day. A study from the University of California Irvine found that once distracted, it can take 23 minutes to get back to task. That’s a LONG time. You can do a lot with 23 minutes here at Daxko – that is prime time to get close some cases, make a phone call, and talk with Darshell about her love for the Pittsburgh Penguins. But instead, distractions come in and chop block your focus zone, leaving you dazed and confused. That’s not to say we shouldn’t be willing to help people; I’m all about the team effort, putting the team on your back, jumping on someone else’s back, watching people’s back, scratching someone’s back, or any back metaphor that alludes to helping a teammate. But there is something to be said about guarding time and getting after it with less distractions. So…. I’ve compiled a list of helpful practices. As with many of the things I say, these aren’t my ideas. I found them all on the interwebs and by watching people at Daxko (for science purposes). All are pretty simple in theory but can be challenging to execute. But to be honest, so what? If habits aren’t hard to train, they probably aren’t habits worth having. Boom, roasted.

#1. Don’t keep your phone on your desk.

This may be the easiest one. It involves taking your phone and putting it in a drawer, or out of arm’s reach. The average American touches their phone about 2,617 times a day. Now granted, this number is an aggregate that includes every tap and touch, but it still shows we are reaching for our devices and interacting with them at an unprecedented level. Checking your phone when you’re in the groove can really kill your flow. Why cool down? Ride that focus out!

#2. Have an email plan.

Set aside some time and listen to this guy blow your mind on Outlook quick tips. Before I watched this gem, my inbox looked like someone took a fresh bag of groceries and dumped them on the kitchen floor. It was a mess. His videos help you organize Outlook and set you up for email success. Watch this one too: Outlook Time Savers

#2a. Figure out how often and when you will check your email.

Everyone has varying theories for 2a. It’s been helpful for me to have 4-6 scheduled times throughout the day to check email. Some people recommend waiting until later in the morning to check it while others benefit from checking just once in the morning. Regardless, some type of plan will help. Email can be just as distracting as your phone if you check it every five minutes.

#3. Plan your day before your day gets going.

Jot down some action items for the day ahead. I usually do this at the end of the day for the next but doing it when you arrive in the morning works too. It’s easier to get things accomplished when your task list sits on your desk all day.

#4. Run from meeting to meeting to save time.

See Marland.

#5. Scooter from meeting to meeting to save time.

See #4.

#6. Block off brain energy time.

Days are filled with processes, and most can be enhanced, delegated, or removed. With just a bit of brain energy time, these can be improved. It’s hard to ask the why behind why you are doing if you’re strapped for time. Some people call this reflection; others, pensive pondering. I like brain energy time. I made it up and it is the only thing I have authentically contributed to this post thus far.

#7. There is no spoon.

In The Matrix, Neo meets a bald kid in a bathrobe who is bending spoons with his brain. The boy tells Neo the key to bending the spoon is realizing there is no spoon (because they’re in the Matrix, duh). When Neo realizes this, he can also bend the spoon with his brain. What does this have to do with time management? This will seem utterly counterintuitive based off what I have mentioned so far but, according to entrepreneur and time master Rory Vaden, there is no such thing as time management. He says that you can’t manage time. Time continues to move on whether we like it or not. There is only self-management. For him, tips and tricks will only get us so far because time management is not just logical but emotional. Humans are emotional beings whose decisions are contingent on the desire of our hearts.  And if Rory is right, then even our “time management” decisions provide a small look into what we think is important, time sensitive, and beneficial. Understanding our time in this light may not give us the ability to bend spoons, but it could provide a paradigm shift that could lead to maximizing, prioritizing, and realizing the potential of what we can accomplish with our time.

There you go! These have been beneficial for me since being at Daxko and have helped in making the most of my day. All in all, I am thankful to work at a place that does not view time simply as a commodity but a space in which excellence, collaboration, and hard-work are always at play. It means the world that teammates, in considering the best use of their time, graciously give me more of it than I deserve.


Sam G. is a Customer Success Advocate who enjoys slow mornings, coffee, and homemade waffles with his wife every Saturday.

Success Story: YMCA of South Hampton Roads Grows with Daxko

By | Customer Experience, Industry, Marketing, Membership, Mission Delivery, Organizational Health | No Comments

Growing your membership, program participants and donations isn’t easy for a member-based nonprofit, but South Hampton Roads has partnered with Daxko for over 15 years and achieved long-term growth and operational efficiency. Read their customer story with the Director of Operations Software for YMCA of South Hampton Roads, Clarissa Hoagland.

Download the PDF file .

525,600 Minutes: A Year of Training (By the Numbers)

By | Culture, Grow Your Career, Life at Daxko, Rewarding Careers, Talent | 4 Comments

If you read that title, you’re probably expecting me to burst into a musical number from Rent. While that isn’t unlikely, I’ll save that for later – this post is all about my last 365 days on Daxko’s training team.

I could spout off all the details of every place I’ve visited, from the beaches of Maine to the mountains of Flagstaff, but I decided to take a very logical, numbers driven approach. If you know me, and know how much I HATE math, you’re probably chuckling about the idea of me taking this approach.

So, what goes into 365 days of being a Software Trainer and spending 75% of my time on the road?

16 new states

3 states previously visited

84 boarding passes

2 flight cancellations

15 new refrigerator magnets

1 impromptu drive home after my flight from St. Louis to Birmingham was canceled

25 rental cars

54 books read on flights

14 plays of Willie Nelson’s “On the Road Again”

 

We’ve got the numbers, but I can’t forget to give out some superlatives:

Most Visited State: Wisconsin (4 total trips)

Most Consecutive Days in a State: Arizona (two weeks straight)

Coldest State: Massachusetts (granted, I DID go in December)

Hottest State: ARIZONA

Favorite State: Virginia with Maine as a close second

Favorite City: Las Vegas with San Diego as a close second

First State Visited as a Trainer: South Dakota, if you can believe it

Most Recently Visited State: North Carolina

Weirdest Favorite Thing in a State: Mark Twain’s House in Hartford, CT

Traveling has been one of my most favorite things about my job. I started at Daxko on our Customer Success team, became a trainer in June of 2016, and quickly realized that my life was about to be almost exclusively on the road. The thought was scary, but also, exciting. Looking back over the last year, seeing all that I’ve seen, all that I’ve done, I can only feel incredibly blessed with the experiences that I have been granted.

I may be a wordsmith, but I can’t do this travel life justice without a few pictures from a year in the life of a traveling girl.


Deeanna S. is a Software Trainer, cat mom, and Tudor history buff who loves the outdoors.