You can always tell when someone loves their job. It’s not in what they say, it’s the results they achieve, and this month’s Better Learning Systems/LearnKey employee of the month is Susan Havens, a Veteran Services Representative who has a passion for helping students. This is evident in the way she supports the sixty-five (65) plus students she works with who are going through our Blue Ocean IT & Career Ready program!
Even though Susan has only been with LearnKey for four (4) months she brings passion, commitment, and discipline to her job each and every day. Her manager had this to say during her nomination:
“Susan has done an amazing job taking the roll of supporting our Veteran Students, and has really helped mentor and motivate them to stay on track and achieve their goals. She is a true display of our core values by earning trust from her team members that she is going to follow through on any task she is given and is an absolute professional when it comes to customer service. We truly value her ability to dig in and figure out how to complete a task on time and she makes it easy for students to like her as she is always engaging with them frequently to ensure they are moving along in their coursework and removing any challenges they face”.
We strive to make LearnKey a fun place to work and Susan fits right in with her funny personality and natural “can do” approach to supporting other team members. Take a minute to get to know the personal side of Susan through this fun Q&A:
- How many siblings do you have? I am number 3 out of 3 brothers and 4 sisters.
- What is your favorite movie? The older comedies because they aren’t so crude…like “The Man Who Knew too Little,” “Grumpy Old Men,” the “Vacation” Movies w/ Chevy Chase, and “What About Bob.”
- What is your favorite band? I love the 80’s Rock Bands…like Chicago, 38 Special, Foreigner, and Aerosmith.
- What is your favorite vacation spot? The central coast in California Pismo Beach, Arroyo Grande, San Louis Obispo area. Still a quiet beach community.
- What was your High School Mascot? A Porterville Panther.
- What is the weirdest combination of foods you have eaten? Honestly, I avoid weird foods at all costs! I’m not a big fan of weird or things that are considered NOT food. I will eat most anything, but weird.
- What is/was the name of your favorite pet? My favorite pet was a little Chihuahua named Annie.
- What was your first car? A yellow Datsun B210 and my favorite car was a 76 Camaro when I was a senior in High School.
- If you could go anywhere in the world where would it be? I’ve been most everywhere, but I would really like to go to Italy and visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa and Rome and Jerusalem and Greece.
- Would you rather sky dive, bungee jump, zip line, or parasail? I would probably have a higher percentage of survival zip lining.
- What is the funniest thing you have heard working here? Nothing specific, but I work with a bunch of witty people who crack me up everyday.
- If you could eat dinner with anyone past, present, or future who would it be? Bill Murray. He cracks me up and I love his sense of humor!
Please join me in congratulating Susan on being our February 2015 employee of the month, and now that I know she does not eat weird food so much for her trying my home made Chili!.
Join me in welcoming in 2015!
Its always exciting to start a new year especially when you have a great team. No better way to do that than talking about our great people. So it gives me great pleasure to announce our first 2015 BLS/LearnKey employee of the month, JJ Embleton, who is our lead on the LearnKey production design team.
JJ’s job is not easy as he plays a key role in making sure our course designs are modern, effective, and drive learning engagement. A great example is the work he did around our Security+ course the end of last year and how he lead the team fostering creativity and providing feedback. Here is what his nominating leader had to say about his efforts:
“It’s hard to choose just one course where JJ has exceeded my expectations as there have been several courses over the past six months where the Design team has had to meet crazy tight deadlines, Flash CC included. He ensures the courses we are releasing are up to the standard we have come accustomed, all while rallying the team alongside him. He does this with his strong organizational skills and a relentless positive attitude of ‘it may be hard, but we can do it.'”
We are fortunate to have JJ as part of our team and along with being a great co-worker we wanted to share a little about his personal life. So take a minute to get to know him through this fun Q&A:
1. How many siblings do you have? One Brother and one sister both younger.
2. What is your favorite movie? Haha! It changes about every week for me but right now it is Big Hero 6.
3. What is your favorite band? That is also another one that changes often, but I have been listening to a lot of Archive lately.
4. What is your favorite vacation spot? Anywhere with good vistas and good hikes. I love hiking with my family!
5. What was your high school’s mascot? The Panthers.
6. What is the weirdest combination of foods you have eaten? I don’t know if it is exactly food, but recently when I was super sick and probably doped up on cold medicine, I mixed Grape Airborne with milk… It ended up being pretty good.
7. What is/was the name of your favorite pet? Tango. He was a Yellow Labrador I had pretty much all through growing up.
8. What was your first car? 1998 Ford Taurus
9. If you could go anywhere in the world where would it be? I would love to go anywhere in the Scandinavian/Icelandic regions.
10. Would you rather sky dive, bungee jump, zip line, or parasail? Sky dive.
11. What is the funniest saying you have heard working here? “Mmm, hot brownie…in my mouth”
12. If you could eat dinner with anyone from the past, present, or future, who would it be and why? My Grandpa Chuck. I knew him well when I was younger but he passed away and I think it would be really fun to get to know him better as an adult.
Please join me in congratulating JJ on his recent success and thanking him for his contributions to our great team!
Some people have a way about them that makes other people respond positively. That is exactly what Jessica Staples does for our veteran students and why she has so much success with them and the vocational rehab counselors that support them as well. That is also why Jessica is our November BLS/LearnKey employee of the month. It was six months ago, almost to the day, that we had the opportunity to bring her on board as a Veteran Services Representative supporting our veteran students. Jessica is also a veteran and can relate to students and motivate them in a way that brings out the positive in them to have the confidence to succeed.
She displays our core values each and every day. Ease comes by the way in which she communicates with students and veterans, always positive and with a “can do” approach. Value is what she brings to the team with her professionalism, top notch customer service skills, and the way she motivates her students. Trust is something she creates everyday, earning it not only with students, but peers and VRC’s.
Here is what her manager had to say during her nomination: “Jessica has shown an amazing amount of professionalism and every day demonstrates excellent customer service skills in her position here at LearnKey. I truly appreciate her ability to adapt to change here at LearnKey while we focus on continuous improvement. I value her knowledge, and experience as a military veteran herself and trust that she has the best interest for the students and LearnKey.”
Please take a few moments to learn a bit more about her outside the office with a fun Q&A:
1. How many siblings do you have? Two and a half. One older sister, one younger sister and a brother on my dad’s side
2. What is your favorite movie? Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
3. What is your favorite band? The Strokes! Or pretty much any classic rock band.
4. What is your favorite vacation spot? Hawaii or Palau
5. What was your high school’s mascot? A Buffalo
6. What is the weirdest combination of foods you have eaten? Ranch mixed with pasta and salad (I was hungry…and didn’t have a lot of time to eat one at a time). Also, ranch makes everything taste better.
7. What is/was the name of your favorite pet? Toto (he looked just like Toto)
8. What was your first car? Ford Taurus SES 2001 Sedan
9. If you could go anywhere in the world where would it be? Ireland, to get to know m’roots!
10. Would you rather sky dive, bungee jump, zip line, or parasail? Zip Line…I’d like to stay as close to the ground as possible LOL
11. What is the funniest saying you have heard working here? It was a conversation that Tiffany was having over the phone with her husband,
“Well if she wants to start dressing like that, she can stay home from preschool!!”
12. If you could eat dinner with anyone from the past, present, or future, who would it be and why? My grandfather on my dad’s side because I never got to know him and he died before I was born.
Congratulations Jessica as we are so fortunate to have you as part of our team!
Not only is Aaron Colborn the newest addition to our LearnKey film and edit team in Salt Lake City, he is also this month’s recipient of our Better Learning Systems Employee of the Month award. Several qualities resonate to the top of what impressed us most about his accomplishments and their alignment to our core values around ease, value, and trust
In just five (5) short months he has become certified in Adobe’s Photoshop CS6 and Illustrator CS6. He is extremely easy to work with, values his co-workers, and has won over the trust of the entire leadership team. Here’s what his manager had to say during his nomination:
“As you can see Aaron is a very goal-oriented employee by taking advantage of what we do, which is produce certification training. He set his sights on these certifications early on and passed them in a very short amount of time. He is a work horse. I can always count on Aaron to meet or beat extremely strict deadlines while maintaining a high quality product. Aaron brings more than 10 years of experience of editing and shooting to our team. His experience allows him to help others on his team who are looking to add that pop or creative flair to the project. We are thrilled to have Aaron on our team!”
Take a moment to ready more about Aaron and his life outside of LearnKey:
1. How many siblings do you have?
I have one older brother who is much smarter than me, but not nearly as handsome. And I smell better.
2. What is your favorite movie?
Anyone who knows me knows that is probably the hardest question that I can be asked. But if I had to narrow it down to one it would be Pulp Fiction, with Boogie Nights as a close second.
3. What is your favorite band?
Again, a tough one, but probably either Radiohead or Pink Floyd.
4. What is your favorite vacation spot?
Anywhere with a beach and booze.
5. What was your high school’s mascot?
A grizzly bear. RAWR! Scaaaarrryyyy!!!
6. What is the weirdest combination of foods you have eaten?
Fried fish eyes. They explode like Gushers (the candy) when you bite down.
7. What is/was the name of your favorite pet?
Bender was the best and weirdest cat I have ever had. He passed away 3 years ago. 🙁
8. What was your first car?
A 1973 Dodge Dart. It was more power than a 17 year old should have.
9. If you could go anywhere in the world where would it be?
10. Would you rather sky dive, bungee jump, zip line, or parasail?
I want to skydive into your heart.
11. What is the funniest saying you have heard working here?
“I’m all teeth and boogers.” – Liz McEuen
12. If you could eat dinner with anyone from the past, present, or future, who would it be and why?
I would have dinner with Stanley Kubrick — at Chuck-A-Rama because their mashed potatoes are delicious!!!
Please join me in congratulating Aaron and congratulations on your Adobe certifications and believing in what we do!
Our IT department rocks and one of the reasons is people like our newest Better Learning Systems employee of the month, Scott Wallace. He treats everyone (internal or external) like a customer, with respect, follow-up, and “can do” attitude. Over the past three months Scott was there for us and our customers at very critical times and we were so fortunate for that. He comes in on weekends if need be, takes on additional responsibilities and always demonstrates our core values because he’s easy to work with, builds trust with people, and values the efforts of his peers .
One of the best experiences for me working with Scott is when he explained in simple terms what we needed to do to eliminate “points of failure” in our technical and operational support areas. I really respected how candid he was and not only expressed the problem but also recommended the right solutions. These recommendations keep our OnlineExpert.com enterprise up and running as well as our many office systems and servers.
His passion for making sure our teachers, students, and veterans have a good learning experience is clearly demonstrated by how he is always willing to take a call to help them any way he can. Could be an internet connection issue, web browser, configuration settings; he demonstrates patience and willingness at all times.
Take a minute to get to know some fun facts about Scott:
1. How many siblings do you have? Two.
2. What is your favorite movie? I can’t answer that there are too many, so I’ll give you my first favorite movie. Johnny Sokko and Giant Robot.
3. What is your favorite band? Led Zeppelin.
4. What is your favorite vacation spot? Anywhere I go together with Dawn & Izzie.
5. What was your high school’s mascot? An Alta hawk, which is a fictitious bird, btw.
6. What is the weirdest combination of foods you have eaten? Not really sure?
7. What is/was the name of your favorite pet? Bogger & Izzie.
8. What was your first car? 1970 Z-28 Camaro.
9. If you could go anywhere in the world where would it be? I would take Dawn on a Disneyland world tour, or where ever she wanted to go.
10. Would you rather sky dive, bungee jump, zip line, or parasail? We’ve been zip-lining. Parasailing I guess.
11. If you could eat dinner with anyone from the past, present, or future, who would it be and why? How could I have dinner with someone from the future? There is no possible way in our fixed number of dimensions that I could possible know who will be in existence in the future. Not two days into the future, not two seconds into the future. Ok how about my wife this weekend at the finest Disneyland restaurant in California.
As previously stated our IT department rocks and Scott Wallace is a big reason for that! Thank you again Scott and congratulations!
Need a trade show coordinated? How about a marketing white paper? Or updated course catalog and better yet- how about travel arrangements? Those are key areas of our company and we are fortunate enough to have Beau Shakespear handle those duties or shall I say “wear all those hats” with a “can do” attitude and great pride in his work. It is for that reason and the way he demonstrates our company’s core values that he is the recipient of our March 2014 Better Learning Systems employee of the month!
As our Marketing and Tradeshow Coordinator Beau has developed strong organizational skills and really taken control in communicating our key messaging for students, teachers and veterans. Our leadership team can count on Beau to be one step ahead of us at all times when it comes to key marketing and support activities. Kim Johnson, his manager, had this to say regarding his nomination:
“Over the past few months Beau coordinated a major redesign of our LearnKey.com website that has made it easier to navigate, find information that is informative and much needed. I am so proud of how he went about completing such a major task and how he has adapted with managing multiple projects, meeting deadlines at all times”.
Our core values are built around ease, value and trust. Beau exemplifies these in how easy it is to work with him, the value his contributions bring and trust he builds with the way he goes about doing his job. Way go to Beau!
As always, here’s a Q and A on some fun facts about Beau:
1. How many siblings do you have? 2 brothers, 1 sister
2. What is your favorite movie? Baby Mamma – This could be because my wife is pregnant. But you can never go wrong with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.
3. What is your favorite band? Couldn’t name a favorite band. But currently I am loving Happy by Pharrell Williams.
4. What is your favorite vacation spot? Disneyland
5. What was your high school’s mascot? Cowboys
6. What is the weirdest combination of foods you have eaten? One time in Mexico I ate crickets with spice on them. They were crunchy.
7. What is/was the name of your favorite pet? Tramp my dog.
8. What was your first car? 1989 golden Astro Van.
9. If you could go anywhere in the world where would it be? Italy or Ireland
10. Would you rather sky dive, bungee jump, zip line, or parasail? I have been sky diving and zip lining. But I would go zip lining again in a heartbeat. It was so much fun.
11. What is the funniest saying you have heard working here? Some things are worth dying for, and one of those things is gluten. YOLO!
12. If you could eat dinner with anyone from the past, present, or future, who would it be and why? I would like to eat with whichever ancestor was the closest to William Shakespeare and ask them how/if I am related to William Shakespeare. Then I would finally have an answer when people ask me “Are you related to William Shakespeare?”
Please join me in congratulating Beau for this great accomplishment and thank you once more Beau for all the great work you do and how you go about doing it.
LearnKey’s Colby Carter is someone who takes pride in his work and is always looking to make this better. That is why he is our July employee of the month! In addition to carrying a large workload the past few months, Colby made sure his internal and external customers were taken care of with each and every call. For those of you who don’t know Colby, he’s our technical support expert and member of the LearnKey client services team. His amazing patience and professionalism during this period did not go unnoticed. Demonstrating our BLS Core values loud and clear. Everyone in LearnKey, Trusts him because he does what he says he is going to do. Making it Easy for anyone who needs his assistance.
In addition to maintaining his cool while we were short staffed in technical support, he took it upon himself to explore a better way to deliver LearnKey content through flash drives, creating more Value in our distribution options. Here’s what his manager Kim Johnson had to say:
“Colby did not wait to be asked, he just did – coordinating calls with internal stakeholders and our IT support vendor. He was prepared, did his due diligence and paved the way for helping LearnKey continue to be a leader providing our learning content in many different ways. Because of his efforts there are potential clients in third world countries now asking for our content in that delivery method.”