August 2020
Enabling Growth & 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
Still Relying on Life’s Cliffs Notes?

It turns out I cheated myself out of an education. As a student, I skipped the heavy lifting by relying on Cliffs Notes, remember those? Instead of actually reading assigned books, I took a short cut so I could hang out with friends. Now, I’m addicted to books on history and am discovering all that I missed. 

Most recently, I’ve been intrigued by Erik Larsen’s novel, The Splendid and The Vile, about Winston Churchill. In addition to all of the details of World War II, I’ve also learned Churchill had a fetish for wearing pink underwear. Who knew? While that is fascinating, my real take home lesson is that many of us are still relying on Cliffs Notes everyday, and it comes at a cost.

Rather than spending time researching widely, we do a quick Google search to get the one piece of information we need. We watch the evening news and think we are fully informed, but the truth is we are just getting the 30 minutes of content the broadcasters chose to provide. We read headlines and scroll through social media. It’s simply not enough. We are not learning enough. In fact, Auxin’s last Competency Survey in 2018 indicated the most significant challenge for our Return to Work talent is their interest and effort in learning continuously. The other key finding was a gap in critical thinking for the current workforce.

At Auxin Group, life-long learning is a priority. We encourage one another to take time to do the hard work, explore the details, and discover the whole story whether the focus is personal exploration or a project for a client. We are now launching the 2020 Competency Survey (you can read more about it further along in this newsletter), and I hope we see some progress in this area. In the meantime, I encourage everyone to set aside life’s Cliffs Notes and dig into the details.
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
Auxin Group Team Site Provides Hub for Associates

A re-designed and robust intranet site offers Associates a one-stop shop for all things Auxin. Once Associates are on board, they receive access to the Auxin Group Team Site which provides a step-by-step guide to getting started, a quick view of each week’s events including reminders of pre-work, and links to register for programs.

Other features of this interactive site include:

Events: View the entire Auxin calendar, sign-up through a new and improved registration process, and click a link to add all the events to your own calendar.

People: Get to know Auxin leadership, connect with other Associates, and find Alums. Associates can also personalize their own page where they can post a bio, list their strengths, and track their progress.

Client Work: Find out about current client projects and gather tips by reading about completed projects.

W.E.L.L.N.E.S.S.: Set your own goals and let Auxin know how you are doing so we can adjust our programs to support the team in the best way possible.

Consulting Tips & Tools: Learn about client communication, running projects, and getting paid.

Links, links, and more links!: 
  • Auxin’s Google Drive, Slack, and Wrike
  • Zoom 
  • Team email distribution
  • Team call sign-up & agendas
  • Productive Partners registration
  • Auxin Blog

Whether you are new to Auxin or have been around for a while, be sure to take time to comb through the Auxin Group Team Site, bookmark it, and refer back to it for everything Auxin.
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.
shaking hands
Coming up in August...
Building a Powerful Network

Networking is one of the best ways to re-engage in the workforce, and you may be surprised to hear you don’t have to work too hard to find connections. Your existing relationships are a great place to start. College friends, parents of your kid’s teammates, and casual acquaintances are part of your base. During this session, we’ll help you figure out how to take those connections to a different level without risking the relationship. It’s a matter of knowing what to ask, how to ask, and what to offer in return.
(W.E.L.L.N.E.S.S.: Work & Deliver)
Thursday, August 13th, 9:30 am-11 am, Virtual, Register
Beth Klajic
Speaker Beth Klajic is a networking pro. She built businesses by relying on her contacts and involvement in organizations including serving as President of the National Association of Women Business Owners for the Chicago Chapter. She has appeared in print and broadcast media and currently speaks on The Conversation Project across Chicagoland. She will share how building networks and making friends has worked for her and can make a difference for you.
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
Auxin Launches Competency Survey, Your Input Needed 

If you are a company leader or people manager, here’s your chance to shape the workforce. Fill out Auxin Group’s Career (Re)Engagement Survey which is designed to identify the gaps in current competencies in workers and the skills that are essential to any company’s success.
The survey focuses on three sources of talent:
  • Current Workforce
  • College Graduates/Entry Level
  • Career Re-Entry
 
We are asking you to consider competencies in four major areas:
  • People (i.e. influence, storytelling)
  • Personal (i.e. learning, trust)
  • Results (i.e. leading, driving projects)
  • Thought (i.e. risk management, strategic thinking)

As in the past, Auxin Group will use the results to ensure our programs provide our Associates, and your future employees, the most relevant learning experiences. At the same time, employers will also find the results helpful in guiding their internal development programs, and job seekers who are looking to boost their skills will know where to focus their attention.
Auxin Associate Richa Joshi is part of the 6-person team working on the survey. “Through this project, I am learning about managing people, collaborating, and collective decision-making,” she said, adding “We are working on playing on each other’s strengths.”
 
Once the survey is complete, Auxin Group will publish the top 10 competencies. If you fill out the survey, you’ll receive the full report.
2020 Benefits Study Update: Auxin Associates are in the process of conducting the final analysis on the Morgan HR Benefits Study. We are excited to share our findings through a variety of channels later in August and will provide a copy in our September newsletter.
 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
Vidya Patil: Engineering Her Return to Work
 
Vidya Patil has a talent for making things work better and more efficiently, and now she’s bringing her skills to Auxin to create new opportunities for herself and helping her fellow Associates at the same time. 
 
As a child growing up in India, near Mumbai, Vidya developed an interest in engineering by assisting her father as he fixed things around the house. Whether it was a scooter, a television, or a mixer, Vidya was eager to learn. After joining high school science camp, she decided to pursue a career in engineering. She earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering in her native India and began her career at Johnson Controls where she improved production time on one assembly line of car seat manufacturing by 20%. She then worked at John Deere as a technical writer before getting married, moving to the U.S. in 2014, and earning a Master’s degree in Engineering Management at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan not far from her home in Canton. While in school, she completed an internship at Saint Joseph Mercy Health System and enhanced the patient transfer process from the emergency room to in-patient by 25%.
 
When her daughter was born nearly three years ago, Vidya took a break from the all-in workforce. She discovered Auxin this past May and was thrilled to find a group designed just for her. “I was surprised that someone created a program for people who were looking to go back to work,” she said, “It was a good feeling that someone was thinking of us.” 

In addition to regaining her confidence and refreshing her skills in a variety of areas including communications and negotiations, Vidya is glad to gain some experience in Project Management, a field that has always interested her. She is currently working on Auxin’s Competency Survey and brought her efficiency expertise to a recent team meeting. “Vidya knew there was work to do and a budget to manage, and she jumped right in and brought focus to the group,” said Laura Morgan, Auxin Group Founder and President.
 
Vidya is also finding motivation in Auxin’s W.E.L.L.N.E.S.S. Model and the areas of Life & Energy and Nature & Environment. She’s stepped up her exercise program for the first time since becoming a mother and is increasing her recycling efforts by replacing paper napkins with cloth napkins. “When it comes to goals, I generally only think about Work and Deliver,” she said, “Auxin is helping me grow overall.”
News About Auxin Alums

Former Auxin Associate Julie Weinberg is launching her new business, Purple Turtle Communications, designed to help individuals, organizations, and small businesses share their story and show their value. She creates content for websites, newsletters, social media and more.
If you're an Auxin Alum and have news to share, email us, and we’ll spread the word.
Auxin Group is always looking for great people.
Click here to let us know you are interested
or to refer candidates to our Talent Management Team.
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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.