July 2020
Enabling Growth and Balance
Growth is our focus and engagement is our strength.
Auxin Group is a self-directed, professionally guided Career (Re)Engagement Development Program
On Laura's Mind
Examine Your Biases

Hey Bears fans, what do you think about Green Bay Packers fans? Cheeseheads, any thoughts about those whose loyalties lie with Da Bears? Feeling judgemental and critical? Making some assumptions? That’s called bias, and it deserves close examination given current events.

Thanks to the recommendation of a colleague, my family tried to name as many biases as we could during a recent family dinner. The total was quite shocking. We counted 33. It was an eye-opening exercise that forced us to acknowledge our own notions. Imagine what the world would be like if we all explored our biases, explained ourselves to one another, and then learned to accept the differences that make us all unique.  

I suggest we take it a step further and seek out people with a perspective that doesn’t match our own. Rather than immersing yourself in an echo chamber on social media, cultivate a community that thinks more broadly. Then actively learn to work with a diverse crowd, and discover the benefits of collaborating with someone whose strengths, skills, and experience are unlike yours. I believe if we can get to a place where we celebrate our differences, joy will replace the anger that has boiled over in our nation.
Laura Morgan  is the Founder/President of Auxin Group. Her 30-year career in Human Resource Management has taught her to embrace growth and balance. Her recipe is simple: work, volunteer and play. She launched Auxin Group to teach others to do the same.
Learning & Development
From studying income statements to taking time for meditation, Auxin packed a lot of growth into the last month. Here’s a look at some of the latest programs and the lessons we learned:
Bob Dietz
Company Financials
Balance sheets, cash flow statements, and income statements tell a company’s financial story, so it’s helpful to know how to read them when considering potential employment.  Bob Dietz , an executive with expertise in operations and project and supply chain management, taught us how to interpret the numbers on these documents. He offered a few take home messages: focus on cash flow which is a good indicator of a company’s longevity, examine the debt position, and look for trends. For example, a company with decreasing sales but flat gross income over time may be changing its strategy and recovering from a downturn, so don’t pass them by too quickly.
What’s in Your Backpack?
After Laura encouraged us to share the stress and anxiety we are all carrying in our invisible backpacks due to COVID-19 in Auxin’s May Newsletter , we gathered for a special session to do some unpacking. As a team, we discovered the benefit of taking time to lighten our load and really listen to one another. Laura told the story of an executive who reached out to her early in her career, extending himself during her moment of need, and illustrating the value of asking the right questions and finding out what’s really going on with someone else. Not only does it lead to more productivity, but it also helps people grow, connect, and recognize when to help the next person with their backpack.
Lindsey Fisher
Meditation
Finding a few minutes in your day for meditation can dramatically improve your wellness on multiple levels. During an Auxin program,  Lindsey Fisher , a health and wellness coach, shared that meditation can decrease anxiety, boost memory, improve energy, and increase productivity. She led a brief meditation practice to demonstrate the benefit of focusing the mind and achieving a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state. While some may think meditation requires a perfect spot on the top of a mountain with a beautiful blue sky, Fisher said all you need is a quiet place, a comfortable position, and ten minutes to get started. Then seek the balance that makes you more productive.
Every program we offer is based on the Auxin W.E.L.L.N.E.S.S. Model which encourages a balanced lifestyle. Associates set goals in eight different areas including Work & Deliver, Emotional Growth & Balance, and Learn & Lead. Click here to learn more.
Coming up in July...
If you haven’t checked out our calendar lately, you’re missing some new learning opportunities. We’ve added some weekly programs including: 

Mindful Monday
We offer a self-directed activity to help you start each week with mindfulness, the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us. While mindfulness is something we all naturally possess, it’s more readily available to us when we practice regularly.

Feedback/Follow-up Friday
Finish the week by taking time to give and receive feedback or reflect on what you’ve learned. We gather virtually every Friday at 9am CT and alternate our focus weekly between feedback and follow-up. It’s a safe space that offers an opportunity for real growth. 

Productive Partners
Join us virtually for one hour of uninterrupted time at the computer. With screens on, we start with a brief round-robin to share our goals, then mute ourselves, and get to work. At the end of the hour call, we quickly share how much everyone accomplished. It’s a great way to create accountability and increase productivity. Several of these sessions are scheduled throughout the month, so check the calendar.
Successful Project Debriefs
Hindsight is 20/20, right? At the conclusion of a project, you can uncover flaws in your process that will only create future problems if left unaddressed. Join our discussion as we rehash team challenges, post mortems, and best practices to tackle these tough conversations.
(W.E.L.L.N.E.S.S.: Work & Deliver)
Thursday, July 9th, 11am-12:30pm, Virtual, Register
Visit our events calendar to sign up for these programs and more.
Our clients are welcome to attend our programs and workshops.
We hope you will join us!
Project Work
Employee Benefits
Benefits Report Coming Soon

With the work force in flux due to COVID-19, MorganHR and Auxin Associates are launching a second biennial study of benefits at some of the top rated companies. “The results will be a great resource for any company trying to recruit top talent by examining what the highest-rated employers are doing to attract and retain individuals,” said Stacy Fenner, Auxin Program Director, “We are certainly curious to see how COVID-19 affects our findings.”

Auxin researchers are looking at “best places to work” according to Fortune 100 Companies, Glassdoor, and Comparably and gathering data on benefits and culture for each company. The final report will provide a full view of common trends, unique perks, and changes compared to the previous analysis.  MorganHR’s 2018 Benefits and Perks Study of Top-Ranked Companies revealed that trust and respect for people was a primary driver behind why a company ranked as one of the top places to work. “As a minimum, they all offered robust core benefits (many offering 100% employer paid premiums for healthcare), but these were supplemented with additional more personal or unique benefits. The benefits were often also available to part-time employees.” researchers wrote.

While this study will provide critical information for employers, it also offers Auxin Associates a unique learning opportunity. They are figuring out how to break down the project into manageable tasks, conduct research on an unfamiliar topic, synthesize the data, and present an accurate and polished report. “The beauty of any project, no matter the work, is how our associates learn to work in a team, hold one another accountable, and deliver and receive rich feedback,” Fenner said.

MorganHR’s 2020 Benefits and Perks Study of Top-Ranked Companies will be available in August.
 Auxin Group is an “on-hand” team of multi-skilled and motivated specialists
who have flexible schedules, experience, knowledge
and collaborative tools to get the job done quickly.
Our Team
Kenja Rasmussen
Kenja Rasmussen: Returning to Scandinavia with New Inspiration
 
Associate Kenja Rasmussen is heading home to her native Denmark this summer ready to take on a new challenge after a couple of years with Auxin. “I have been inspired to work as a consultant. I’ve seen how motivating that is. It makes my heart sing,” she said.
 
Kenja came to the United States two years ago when her husband’s job moved her family. Once her teenage sons settled into high school, Kenja began looking for an opportunity for herself. With 20 years of experience in human resources, she found a good fit with Auxin given much of its project work and learning programs are related to the same field.
 
Right from the start, Kenja jumped into project work including an analysis of employee turnover which provided a superb exercise in listening, examining leadership styles, and finding solutions. Other projects gave her opportunities to design focus groups and recruit top talent for executive roles. At the same time, she participated in Auxin’s Learning and Development programs. “It gave me a good chance to reflect on my own life and think about where I am now,” she said, explaining she plans to look for some consulting work after settling back into her home in Søllerød, North of Copenhagen.
 
Looking back on her two years in the United States, Kenja said has been “the biggest eye opener” of her life. “It’s given me a learning journey culturally and socially,” she said, “I’ve received so much.” In addition to making some lifelong friends in the U.S., the Rasmussen family has also traveled extensively with road trips through the majority of states.
During a virtual goodbye celebration, the Auxin team gathered to wish Kenja well, express gratitude for her teamwork, and in true Auxin style, learn something new. Each person shared a fun fact about Denmark, and in return, Kenja offered her own recommendation for the number one thing to do when visiting her homeland: enjoy an open-faced sandwich known as Smørrebrød.

Best of luck to Kenja on her next adventure! 
Kenja's going away celebration
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Auxin Group, a division of MorganHR, is a unique benefit program that provides relevant training and collaborative project-based experiences to encourage ongoing growth and development.