By | Culture, Grow Your Career, Marketing, Professional Development, YMCA | No Comments

The General Assembly of YMCAs is a giant conference hosted by the YMCA of the USA that only comes around once every three years. I’m still in my first year as a Daxko team member (coming up on my one year Dax-versary!), and I was thrilled to have the opportunity to attend this conference.

I work on the events team within marketing at Daxko, and I help coordinate our involvement in conferences like this one. We spent many months preparing for this conference, and it was cool seeing all of the prep-work come to life!

I flew into Philadelphia the night before the conference.  My team lead, Barb, was there overseeing the booth set-up when I landed. With excitement, I immediately called her and we met up for dinner. That dinner was the calm before the storm.

The next day was jam-packed. Barb and I got to the exhibit bright and early to set up. Little did we know, we were in for a long day! The booth was busy all day. Of course, from a marketing perspective, that’s a good thing. It was fun watching our whole team make connections with YMCA friends. We got to give away our first iPad Mini, which was fun! We couldn’t get in touch with the winner until after the conference, but we shipped the prize to her. When she received it, she said, “This is something we never would have bought for ourselves and we are loving it!” That was awesome.

That night, we had a networking event at a local sports bar. We expected a little over 300 people to come, but there were over 600 people that showed up! It was a mind-blowing turn out.

We rocked the second day at the exhibit. I took lots of pictures and captured some video while everyone was busy making connections. We gave away for another iPad Mini. We called the winner, and she was so excited that she asked us to charge it overnight so she could use it the next day! We gave it to her the next morning; she was ecstatic.

We got the second night off so I went to eat a family style dinner at Maggiano’s with my fellow Daxko team members. We followed that up with a trip to Insomnia Cookies. This place serves and delivers cookies until 3:00 a.m. Their cookies were gooey and warm. It was like a dream come true. After a long day of work, we all deserved it!

The third day for me was awesome. I was able to explore Philadelphia a little bit. I saw the Liberty Bell/Independence Hall. I walked to an ice cream shop called the Franklin Fountain. Then, I found Love Park on the way home and got a picture by the famous LOVE sculpture.

The last night of the conference was the Big YMCA Bash, sponsored by Daxko. This party was a perfect way to end the conference. There were over 2,600 attendees! We drew for our grand prize winner at the bash. We gave away a $300 Apple gift card and an iPad Mini. When Dave (our CEO) called the winner to tell her she’d won, she said, “Shut up!” She couldn’t believe it. We found her in the crowd to give her the prize, and it was awesome getting to see the look on her face! The Sensation Showband rocked everyone’s socks off, especially when they played “Sweet Home Alabama.”

I had fun tweeting throughout the conference on the Daxko Twitter. I also posted a Facebook album.

Chapple C. is a Marketing Coordinator who enjoys breathing fresh air, consuming a good book, and reveling in quality time.

Create a Culture of Excellence

By | Culture | No Comments

How can you be a person of influence in a culture that has influences coming from every direction? We live our lives constantly bombarded with influences from school, workplaces, friends, family, communities, TV, social media, the web, you name it. We have to make the decision, in the midst of the chaos, on whether or not we will follow culture or be somebody who sets culture.

Being a leader means to be a person of influence. We’re influenced all the time without knowing it. Mediocrity, for example, is a culture. You know people living in this culture: the people that got by in school making Cs. Hey, there’s nothing wrong with Cs, if you worked really hard for them. I’m talking about the people that made Cs when they knew they had the ability to make As but simply didn’t want to put in the effort.  People like that are comfortable living a mediocre lifestyle. That’s fine. However, a leader has to be someone that doesn’t follow culture, a leader must rise above culture.

How do you rise above the chaos? Create your own culture of excellence. Even if everyone else is comfortable being mediocre (or less than mediocre) at work, at school, or in their personal lives, you must strive to be excellent. Here are ten things to focus on. If you work to be excellent in the following focus areas, I promise that people will notice a difference in you. You’ll gain respect, and you’ll become a person of influence.

  1. Hold the highest standards.
  2. Be a person of integrity.
  3. Add value to people.
  4. Work harder.
  5. Over-deliver.
  6. Bring new insights.
  7. Make a difference.
  8. Find a better way.
  9. Constantly learn.
  10. Model the behavior of someone who made a difference in your life.

Chapple C. is a Marketing Coordinator who enjoys breathing fresh air, consuming a good book, and reveling in quality time.


Compliments to the Chef

By | Culture | No Comments

“My compliments to the chef” takes on a whole new meaning when you get to be the chef. The Sales and Marketing team got together for a fun team-building experience last month. We headed to Everything IZ in Vestavia Hills for an Italian cooking-class. We made everything on the menu from the appetizers to the desserts.

For starters, we made Truffle White Bean Puree, which we spread onto a crostini and topped it with arugula and shaved pecorino Romano cheese. Then we made Serrano & Mozzarella Aranchici, which are fried rice balls filled with pimento cheese. We dipped these in a sweet mustard sauce.

For dinner, We made Southern Style Bolognese, which is slow cooked Bolognese sauce and homemade pasta. I had never made homemade pasta dough before. It took time, but it was worth it.

For dessert, we made Tiramisu. I’m totally a dessert person, so this was my personal favorite. I thought it was so creative that the chef thought to use large coffee mugs to fill with the tiramisu layers to make personal-size portions of the dessert.

My favorite part of the experience was getting to taste all of our delicious creations alongside my wonderful team members!

View the full album on Facebook.

Chapple C. is a Marketing Coordinator who enjoys breathing fresh air, consuming a good book, and reveling in quality time.