consulting

Episode 112: What Are 6 Characteristics of Messaging to Improve Communication?
Episode 112: What Are 6 Characteristics of Messaging to Improve Communication? 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” —George Bernard Shaw

Is your team struggling with missed deadlines or long back-and-forth email chains getting nowhere? Are there conflicts between team members? Is the team morale less than ideal? These things (and many more) are often caused by ineffective communication.

There are three parts to effective communication: the successful delivery, reception and understanding of a message. Today, Carla Sones and Faye Davis dive into what makes organizational messaging effective. Carla talks through the 6 Cs of communication (concrete, coherent, clear, concise, complete, courteous) and shares actionable tips for leaders of people to make sure messaging lands well with their team.

While a large portion of responsibility lies with leaders and the organization to craft clear communications, the individual members of the organization also have a personal responsibility to ensure they’re open to being communicated with. Growing that self-awareness is a crucial part of professional development. Tune in now to learn more about communicating effectively!

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai

Episode 111: Do You Take Every Event as a Learning Opportunity? | Adam Hess, CSX
Episode 111: Do You Take Every Event as a Learning Opportunity? | Adam Hess, CSX 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“Learning the positives and negatives is so critical for every body, as long as you take away something” —Adam Hess

Have you noticed that trends that were on the horizon were accelerated during the last 12 months? How have different areas of economic development been impacted by the pandemic?

Adam Hess talks about how the last year has been shaping the rail industry and its future model. In his role at CSX, Adam has seen first hand the positive and negative influence the pandemic has had. As supply chain demands increase and materials being transported change, how do we keep up with the shifts? Adam discusses the importance of establishing your foundation so you can grow from a stable point.

Adam is all about teamwork and seeing something go from dream to reality. His ability to pull something together and see the vision become a long term effect is one of the many reasons he is recognized as one of 2021 North America’s Top 50 Economic Developers.

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai

Episode 110: Do You Know the Team Phase Most Likely to Mess Up a Team’s Dynamic?
Episode 110: Do You Know the Team Phase Most Likely to Mess Up a Team’s Dynamic? 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“We all want to be a part of teams that are healthy and productive, and it takes leadership to do it.” —Carla Sones

Have you witnessed a team in your organization come together and start off rocky? Which team phase is most likely to break a good team’s dynamics? Economic development organizations are constantly putting together new teams. Whether it is a new project in the pipeline, a new elected official or a fresh partnership, different teams are always forming.

On this episode, Carla Sones and Faye Davis discuss the ever shifting teams within economic development organizations. With the direction of the Tuckman Model, Carla shows how the construction of a new team goes from the forming phase to the preforming phase. Though that sounds straight-forward, there is a point where the team is storming and that is where strong leadership steps in.

With teams continually phasing, it can feel like there is a win or a loss coming and we all want to be on the right side of the outcome. With high emotions, it takes dedicated leadership to facilitate conversation that will propel teams into the unstoppable force they can be.

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai

Episode 109: How Do We Move Forward After a Year of Shifting? | Chris Strayer, Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce
Episode 109: How Do We Move Forward After a Year of Shifting? | Chris Strayer, Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“We’re helping people improve their lives and creating a better economy for them so they can be successful.” —Chris Strayer

What has the last 12 months looked like for Economic Development Organizations and Chambers? Have you experienced the constant shifting in work to meet needs? The workplace is ever-changing and we are all feeling it. How do we step into the next year prepared and energized?

Chris Strayer talks about what is driving the influx of projects coming to North Texas, how vaccinations may affect deal flow, and the future of working in the office. 2020 was the year of shifting, but Chris talks about what 2021 and 2022 may look like for our organizations. Chris shows how in his role at the Forth Worth Chamber of Commerce, they have been able to meet their community needs. Every company is making different decisions right now, but how do we improve lives to improve the economy?

Chris is staying rooted in what was needed and how helping his community has been his force to stay motivated.  He is recognized as one of North America’s Top 50 Economic Developers. Chris’s energy, positivity and leadership are showcased in this interview as reasons why he is one of the Top!

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai

Episode 108: Is Unhealthy Team Tension Creating Dysfunction within Your Workplace?
Episode 108: Is Unhealthy Team Tension Creating Dysfunction within Your Workplace? 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“When you get to a place where there is some healthy tension there, you can make ideas better.” —Carla Sones

Have you ever been in a meeting with the business attraction and marketing teams and felt the tension? We see this all of the time between the team that produces the materials to sell and the team responsible for selling the region. But how can we come to a place of healthy tension that pushes our mission forward?

On this episode, Carla Sones and Faye Davis dive into the stereotypes of marketing and “sales” teams. Together, they show how these stereotypes are creating dysfunction which can lead straight to the tanking of productivity, effectiveness, culture and team dynamics.

Carla also shares encouragement for leaders as to what healthy tension can look like and what the results can be. We don’t have to be in a space where our teams are just working, but we can get to a place where trust and collaboration can make our organizations thrive!

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai

Episode 107: What Is One Skill That Is Crucial to Economic Development? | Lora Steele, Hendricks County Economic Development Partnership and EmployIndy
Episode 107: What Is One Skill That Is Crucial to Economic Development? | Lora Steele, Hendricks County Economic Development Partnership and EmployIndy 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“Economic development is everything, everything is economic development.” —Lora Steele

When you think of economic development, what do you think is one of the most powerful skills to have? If you thought about the power of relationships, you’re right on the money! No matter what hurdle we are facing, the first step most of us take is to call on a trusted colleague or mentor to help guide us through.

Lora Steele joins Faye Davis on today’s podcast. Lora has just accepted a really exciting new opportunity to be the Director of Business Consulting with EmployIndy starting on April 5. This interview was recorded prior to this announcement, so you will hear Faye refer to Lora by her current role at Hendricks County, where she will be until the end of this week. A recurring theme throughout their conversation is the role relationships play in our life. Whether we’re talking about career growth, professional development opportunities, mentorship or addressing social change, Lora is a firm believer in the power of relationships.

Lora also shares empowering advice for fellow female economic developers, dives how she navigates the journey to be part of social change movements, and talks about why economic development is a crucial part of social change. She is recognized as one of North America’s Top 50 Economic Developers and this interview will clue you right in as to why!

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai

Episode 106: Three Things to Know If You Want to Be a Point Leader | Tim Cowden, Kansas City Area Development Council
Episode 106: Three Things to Know If You Want to Be a Point Leader | Tim Cowden, Kansas City Area Development Council 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“We are always learning and applying it forward. “ —Tim Cowden

Is leading your own organization on your list of future career goals? Tim Cowden joins Carla Sones to dive into the lessons learned on the path to point leadership, such as getting the courage to put your hat in the ring for that CEO job and how energy has to be managed to stay fresh.

Tim talks about the three big things that encompass the CEO role in economic development, and discusses how he applies each rock in his day-to-day life. His insights on navigating not just one but two separate state political systems in his role are helpful for those trying to build stronger relationships with their elected leadership.

And, of course, while we were able to talk with Tim, we also asked about how him and his team are structuring their marketing outreach which has been so bold and intentional in bringing folks to Kansas City. Buckle up, today’s episode is one to bookmark!

Bio:

Tim Cowden is the president and CEO at Kansas City Area Development Council (KCADC), where he leads the strategic direction and vision for the Kansas City Area Development Council from global positioning for the KC market to KCADC investor and client relationships. The KCADC team drives new corporate attraction in partnership with economic development leadership across the 18-county, two state Kansas City region. Tim has more than 30 years of experience in economic development, including senior positions in Texas, Utah, and Kansas City. He has been with KCADC since 1998.

Cowden and his team successfully work with a variety of business types reflecting the diverse strengths of the Kansas City region. These include investments focused on advanced manufacturing, corporate headquarters, shared services operations, information technology, logistics/distribution, and animal, bio and life sciences.

KCADC is a three time #1 “Best in Class” Regional Economic Development Organization according to the Development Counsellors International “Winning Strategies” survey of national site location consultants, conducted every three years.

He graduated with a B.A. degree from the University of Oklahoma. Tim is married to Monique and they have four children: Sarah, Joe, Anna, and Jack.

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai

Episode 105: How to Let Your Passion Inspire Your Purpose | Jill Marasa, Economic Development Council of St. Lucie County
Episode 105: How to Let Your Passion Inspire Your Purpose | Jill Marasa, Economic Development Council of St. Lucie County 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“I’m very passionate and engaged in everything that I undertake and seek that same energy in those around me.” —Jill Marasa

What is that one thing about economic development that gets your heart beating faster, that energizes you without the assistance of caffeine? Is it the thrill of landing a new big project? Is it the urgency of solving talent problems? Or does your passion and purpose intersect with the knowledge you’re improving families’ lives not just today but for generations to come?

Today, Carla Sones talks with Jill Marasa, Vice President of Business Retention and Expansion for the Economic Development Council of St. Lucie County. Jill dives into the challenges (and rewards) of communicating her role to community members who need to know the importance of economic development, why this matters to her, and how doing this well makes doing her job easier and more impactful.

Carla and Jill dive into a discussion on workforce, where Jill shares some of the innovative strategies her organization is implementing, the partnership she’s forged to drive the plan forward, and why these events have been successful as a talent strategy sure to impact folks for years to come.

Jill is recognized as one of North America’s Top 50 Economic Developers, and her passion for her region is palpable. We are excited for you to listen in to the full conversation!

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai

Episode 104: Are You Courageous Enough to Make Really Big Decisions?? | Betsy Markey, Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade
Episode 104: Are You Courageous Enough to Make Really Big Decisions?? | Betsy Markey, Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“You can’t make a decision without being brave enough to acknowledge that you might fail. You may not always succeed, but you will be a better person for it.” —Betsy Markey

Have you ever been faced with needing to make a big decision where the responsibility for consequences rests mostly on your shoulders? Did the thought of failing give you anxiety about making the wrong choice?

Betsy Markey, Executive Director for the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, joins Carla to talk about big decisions, potential failures, bravery and lessons.

Betsy has had a wide range of experiences, including as a business owner, a public servant at the federal level, and now working for the greater good of Colorado. She talks about empathy being a guiding principle in all of the work she has done, especially while leading her team through this pandemic. Betsy also dives into cultivating the courage to do things where you might fail. She talks candidly about her experiences with failure and the lessons she has learned.

Betsy is one of North America’s Top 50 Economic Developers, and she has a lot of inspiring, refreshing, creative and motivating insights. Tune in now!

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai

Episode 103: How Has Business Attraction Strategy Changed This Year? | Liana Hovakimyan, Toronto Global
Episode 103: How Has Business Attraction Strategy Changed This Year? | Liana Hovakimyan, Toronto Global 150 150 America's Jobs Team

“One can be a natural-born networker, but nurturing that growing network is a completely different skill that adds meaning to any relationship.” —Liana Hovakimyan

Who else has felt immensely challenged by the inability to connect in-person over the past year? How has it affected your efforts to build relationships and grow your network?

Today, Carla Sones talks with Liana Hovakimyan, Director of Investment Attraction at Toronto Global. As an organization focused entirely on attracting business, Liana talks about the struggles (and ways she has overcome said hurdles) of shifting to remote visits and connections with potential new businesses and clients.

Liana has a fascinating, international lens on economic development; she has worked within the discipline in Armenia, Egypt, and now in Canada with a focus on attracting US businesses. She shares what sets Toronto apart from other cities and why the city is becoming a major hub for talent.

Recognized as one of North America’s Top 50 Economic Developers, Liana has keen insights on the business attraction industry and has an energizing conversation with Carla Sones. Tune in now to hear more from this driven and high-performing woman!

America’s Jobs Team is sponsored by Research on Investment / Gazelle.ai