Does the traditional framework for being a "successful business" or "managing staff" leave you feeling icky, unconnected, and not true to yourself or your mission?
Top-down, hierarchical, dictatorial structure isn't working for you or your team. You know there must be another way.
Early on in my HR career, I felt like my sole purpose was to save the company money, to limit the company's risk, oh and to make sure there was a never-ending stream of new people available to work.
I did things that were not aligned with my values because I wanted to be good at my job. I wanted to impress the people I was working for, and I was afraid that if I didn't do it right, I'd end up not being worth my salary. I overruled my instincts and my morals on the daily.
But my body had other ideas about what it wanted for me. It gave me a panic attack at a particularly difficult time. I went to see a psychiatrist who told me, "This just happens to people. You're fine." But I knew I wasn't fine and that I couldn't keep doing what I was doing.
So I quit my job, started Fortress and Flourish, and now get to help business owners, CEOs, Executive Directors, HR professionals and solopreneurs with regenerative business practices that help them find and keep their best team. I have applied my experience in HR, wellness & governance to support conservation organizations, tech companies, architecture and engineering firms, retail shops, restaurants, breweries, distilleries, music festivals, municipalities, counties and special districts to name a few.
Want to create your roadmap to a healthy workplace?
Let's let go of work that doesn't work for us and do things a different way.
There is a way to find alignment between your desire to be yourself, to connect with your team, and to increase your organization's impact. Keep the love and leave the hurt by cutting down on confusion and miscommunication, clarifying goals and expectations, and supporting the psychological safety of your team.
Want to learn more? Then I recommend checking out my newsletter. It's where I spend the most time creating useful, interesting support for you. It's where I share all the updates about Fortress and Flourish, my podcast The Hearth, and me personally.
In business and in life we need sustainable systems in order to keep going. It's my belief that the high turnover rates that we see at many companies have a lot to do with how those companies have created unsustainable systems.
These may relate to workflow, compensation, scheduling or profitability. They may have to do with the ways that pressures from our culture make their way into the workplace. My work is about finding sustainable ways to work together for the long term.
When I talk about equity I'm not talking about money. I am talking about understanding that certain groups have been disadvantaged by the systems and society that we live in, and it is our responsibility to rebuild our systems within our organizations to right those wrongs.
Working toward equity isn't always a simple path. it requires us to continually question the systems that we are creating, the decisions we are making, and to build toward a better future for all.
If we don't have our health, we don't have anything. America has something that we call the Health Disadvantage meaning that we are sicker than our counterparts in most other developed countries. 6 out of 10 of us have chronic health conditions.
Healthcare only accounts for 10 - 20% of all health coutcomes. Since we spend 50% or more of our lives at work, how what percentage of health outcomes are work related? My take is that work and health are interconnected, and that it's our job to provide a healing space.
Here's how I can help. . .
HR Professionals: Early Career & Department of 1
When I was new to the field of HR, it was invaluable to have someone I could call on with years of practical experience to help guide me through the ups and downs of the profession. That's why I love mentorship HR professionals who are early in their careers.
Did you know that having professional mentorship is one of the indicators of how long and how successfully people perform in their field? This is especially important in the field of HR which has one of the highest turnover rates of any profession. Learn more & apply, or book a 1:1 session to work through one of your emerging HR issues.
Figuring out how to hire your first contractor or employee?
This was one of the hardest things that I had to do when my business started getting to be too much for me alone. I've distilled everything I learned into this DIY course. You can also book a Get Unstuck session with me if you'd like individualized support with hiring.
Podcasts, Shows, Events & Conferences
I inspire leaders to build thriving work ecosystems that suppor themselves, their teams, and their community, I've been featured on podcasts, radio and TV, professional events & conferences. My goal as a speaker is to bring unique and thought-provoking ideas to your audience to inspire them, challenge them and encourage them to grow.
A Few Surprising Facts About Me. . .
I’m a woodfire
I throw functional ware (like cups and bowls) and then work with a team of people for 24 hours a day, many days in a row to fire the kiln. There's nothing like pulling the pieces out. I never know what I'm going to get!
I started my first company when I was 23
It was a group tour company and we took people to Key West, Savannah and New Orleans for up to 4 days at a time. I closed the company when I moved back to CA to be closer to family.
I lived and worked as an archaeologist in the Middle East
I specialized in burials and human osteology. When I graduated I decided to take some time away from school to see if archaeology was really what I wanted to do with my life.
My first HR job was for a restaurant group
I'm a foodie & beverage lover! I love trying new local restaurants, weird foods, going to the Farmer's Market, cooking at home and gardening. I tried brewing beer one time, but decided to leave that one to the pros.
I've been called the most "crunchy" HR person my clients have ever met
But I'm also chock-full of experience and credentials. I hold a Bachelor's degree in Anthropology with an emphasis in Archaeology, a minor in the Philosophy of Religion, and Masters in Human Resources and Labor Relations with an emphasis in Training and Development.
I am certified in learner-centered teaching through the CELTA program, and a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources through HRCI.
I am a member of the Santa Cruz County Business Council and Society for Human Resources. Formerly I have been a member of these boards of directors: Santa Cruz County Workforce Development Board, Homeless Garden Project, Pajaro Valley Loaves and Fishes, and the Santa Cruz Downtown Association. Additionally, I was appointed by Santa Cruz City Council to Co-Chair the Community Advisory Committee on Homelessness.
I'm also a mom who birthed at home two times attended by a midwife, a doula and my husband. I believe that it's important for us, especially as working mothers, to regain sovereignty of our bodies and to decrease the day-to-day stress in our lives so that we can be healthier and happier. Otherwise what's the point of all this anyway?