EMPLOYEE INSIGHT: Hawaiian shirt, meet pogo stick

What do you get when you combine Hawaiian shirt day and a pogo stick?  Engagement!  Well, I don’t know if you would get that every time you combined those two items, but this Spring that combination demonstrated staff engagement. Dr. Stan Cram, our VP of Student Affairs, was sporting a Hawaiian shirt to support our Foundation and student scholarships.  The pogo stick was just for fun!

Speaking of engagement, as Moraine Park’s Director of Talent Management, let me offer an update on the employee engagement and talent management activities at MPTC.



Dr. Stan Cram, VP of Student Affairs, taking the pogo stick challenge and sporting a Hawaiian shirt to support the MPTC Foundation.

In May and June, our MPTC leaders received reports and analysis for our first annual TalentWatch employee engagement survey.  There were some gifts, some affirmations and some surprises – all great for learning, understanding and prioritizing our engagement efforts!  In July, August and September, we will be sharing additional information with all employees, including college-wide and team specific results and action steps.  Please participate fully in these discussions and share in our journey to increase engagement; it is highly likely you’ll have some fun along the way.

If you haven’t already joined the Twitter world, please consider doing so.  MPTC has created an engagement hashtag, #MPTCEngage, where you can see what your coworkers are doing to get engaged at work.  Plus, you can join the fun by posting pics and comments.  For more information, please see the previous engagement blog, click here.

Coming Up

There are some exciting talent management things coming to MPTC this year.  Moraine Park is committed to identifying our workforce needs for the future and to retaining our high quality employees.  Therefore, we are rolling out a program to identify high potential employees in our organization to help us identify strong leaders for MPTC’s future.

“High potential employees are those employees who are identified as having the potential, ability and aspiration for successive leadership positions within a company.” (Bersin by Deloitte)  We will be utilizing the ViaEdge self assessment by KornFerry to identify high potentials at MPTC.  We will begin our pilot of this program in 2016-17, where supervisors will participate in the assessment and follow-up, as well as 15 additional employees (5 faculty members, 5 support professionals and 5 non-supervisory managers).  Please watch for more information on myMPTC regarding participation in the pilot program.

Pete’s Reflections

In May, we walked through the KornFerry programs and products at President’s Cabinet.  We utilized Pete Rettler as our guinea pig. Here are some thoughts from Pete on the process:

What were your initial thoughts when you were asked to participate and take the Via Edge assessment?  I was initially afraid that my results would show that I have no potential.

Then, why did you agree to take it?  It wasn’t threatening.  It was fun to be the pilot tester.  I felt a little privileged… just a little.  🙂

What was the assessment like?  Was it difficult?  How long did it take you to complete?  I was tired that day, so I had to refocus numerous time.  I focused by going with my initial instincts when answering the questions.  The assessment was easy.  It took approximately 30 minutes to complete.

Was there anything you didn’t like about the process, or anything you would change?  No.  It seemed to go as was previously described to me.

What are your overall thoughts about the process?  I was very pleased that my results were similar to how my peers rated me.  I asked questions about the validity and how it was determined.  It was helpful to have the lists of behavioral tendencies based on my scores to determine what were typical behavioral tendencies for me and what were not (typical behavioral tendencies). 

What do you think will be the greatest benefit of this assessment and process to MPTC?  I honestly am really behind this.  I am hoping this will be used to put a plan in place to secure our rising stars.  It will help rising stars see a path and how they fit.  

Is there anything you would like to add about this experience or about learning agility?  I believe it is a much needed tool.  If used properly we can retain high potential employees and keep them from drifting to other companies.  I am really in favor of this.

What was the greatest influence on you joining MPTC?  Fridays off in the summer.  I was given a nice offer to stay at my current employer, but when Rodney Pasch told me about Fridays, the deal was done. 

What attracted you to the job you are in now?  My dream job when I was an adjunct faculty member at MPTC was to be Mo Josten.

Written by Beth Mendoza
Director of Talent Management