Archive for the ‘Leadership Academy’ Category

Aurora Chamber News for May 29, 2018: Golf Registration Opens

Tuesday, May 29th, 2018

Golf Classic Registration Open

Aurora Chamber

  In This Issue  

Golf Classic Registration Open »
General Assembly Update »
Premier Investors »
Member News »
Elite Members »
New Members »
Calendar of Events »

Golf Classic Registration Open

Golf Classic

General Assembly Update

Both chambers have cancelled previously scheduled sessions this past weekend. They were expected to return to Springfield on Monday – leaving just four days for regular session.

The Chamber has been monitoring nearly 100 pieces of legislation in Springfield this session. Highlights may be found on our blog.

Premier Investors

Premier Investors

Member News

If you have news to share with your fellow members, please forward to info@aurora-chamber.com. Be sure and check out our blog and social media for what’s happening in our region.
#AuroraLeadership Academy Recap »
Aurora University Presents Honorary Doctorate to Mayor Irvin »
Aurora Ranks as One of Best Cities to Live the American Dream »
Ill. Chamber Opens EDIE Nominations »
Earthmover Credit Union to Host BBQ for Local Man »
Bringing Leadership Awareness to the Masses »
What Service Leadership Means to Me »
Empowering Women in Leadership »
Collaborative Leadership »
A Call to Leadership – Get Involved »

Elite Members

+Intention 95.9 The River Aaron’s Above Board Indoor Environmental Accurate Personnel Alarm Detection Systems, Inc. Aurora Bank & Trust Aurora Limousine Aurora University Baird & Warner – Holli Thurston Beans Greens Proteins Caterpillar, Inc. Chicago Steel Hockey Team City Segment ComEd Company 251 Comprehensive Prosthetics and Orthotics Country Financial – West Aurora CyrusOne Do or Dye Designs Dolan & Murphy Downtown Auroran Magazine Eagle Digital Marketing Endiro Coffee First Secure Community Bank ganc.io Gateway Mortgage Group Healthcare Solutions Team – Deepti Srivastava Jiffy Lube Multi-Care Kluber Architects + Engineers Konen Insurance Agency, Inc. Magick Woods, Inc. Magnetrol International, Inc. MedCom Group, LLC Midwest Coach Limousine, Inc. Mitutoyo America Corporation Mooney & Thomas P.C. Old Second National Bank New York Life Insurance Company and Nylife Securities, LLC OnLight Aurora Painters District Council 30 Palo Creative, PLL Paramount Arts Centre Pilmer Real Estate Plum Landing Retirement Community Presence Mercy Medical Center Pure Skin Solutions, LLC R.C. Wegman Construction Company Rasmussen College Rich Harvest Farms Rush Copley Medical Center S&S Metal Recyclers II Scientel Solutions ServPro of Aurora Sign*A*Rama SmithAmundsen, LLC Staffing Network, LLC & QPA Staffmark Thoughtwave Software & Solutions Two Brothers Roundhouse Valley Fastener Group, LLC VivirMED, LLC The Voice Waubonsee Community College Weldstar Company Woodforest National Bank World Finance Corporation WSPY

New Members

Fundamental Health
Dr. Ryan Robinson
4255 Westbrook Drive, Suite 203, Aurora
(630) 206-9002
Chiropractors

Aurora Collective (Premier)
Brandon Lyons
675 Station Blvd, Aurora
(331) 223-1435 (work)
Marketing & Advertising

Barbara Geiger – Keller Williams Experience (Elite)
Barbara Geiger
5122 Main Street, Downers Grove
(630) 935-1127
Real Estate

Calendar of Events

Fox Valley Networking Professionals
Thursday, May 31, 8 a.m.
Pomegranate Restaurant, 55 S. Commons, Aurora
Sponsored by Pure Skin Solutions

Dedication Ceremony: Fire Museum
Friday, June 1, 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
53 N. Broadway, Aurora
Apple Tree Dedication @ 12 p.m.

Marketing Lunch & Learn: VIA & ARCC
Thursday, June 14, 12 p.m.
2000 S. Batavia Ave, Suite 110, Geneva

Grand Opening: Telescript Pharmacy
Wednesday, June 20, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
3535 E. New York Street, Suite 117, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 11:30 a.m.

35th Anniversary: Banana Split
Wednesday, June 21, 4 – 5:30 p.m.
820 Church Road, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 4:30 p.m.

Grand Opening: Aurora Collective
Thursday, June 22, 4 – 5:30 p.m.
675 Station Blvd, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 4:30 p.m.

Grand Opening: VivirMed
Wednesday, June 27 12:30 – 2 p.m.
630 N. Lake St., Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 1 p.m.

Fox Valley Networking Professionals
Thursday, June 28, 8 a.m.
Pomegranate Restaurant, 55 S. Commons Dr., Aurora
Sponsored by North Star Credit Union

Grand Opening Ribbon Cutting: M14 Hoops
Friday, June 29, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
2414 Church Road, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 1 p.m.

Aurora Chamber Golf Classic
Thursday, July 12
Orchard Valley Golf Course, 2411 West Illinois Ave, Aurora
Sponsorships Available

Coffee & Connections Networking
Tuesday, July 17, 8:30 a.m.
Painters District No. 30, 1905 Sequoia Drive, Aurora

Facebook

Blog

Twitter

Aurora Regional Chamber of Commerce
43 W. Galena Blvd.
Aurora, IL 60506
Phone: (630) 256-3180
Fax: (630) 256-3189

www.aurora-chamber.com

 

Aurora Chamber News for May 14

Tuesday, May 15th, 2018
#AuroraLeadership Academy Recap

Aurora Chamber

  In This Issue  

Premier Investors »
Member News »
Elite Members »
New Members »
Calendar of Events »

Premier Investors

Premier Investors

Member News

Aurora Chamber

If you have news to share with your fellow members, please forward to info@aurora-chamber.com. Be sure and check out our blog and social media for what’s happening in our region.
#AuroraLeadership Academy Recap »
Aurora University Presents Honorary Doctorate to Mayor Irvin »
Aurora Ranks as One of Best Cities to Live the American Dream »
Ill. Chamber Opens EDIE Nominations »
Earthmover Credit Union to Host BBQ for Local Man »
Bringing Leadership Awareness to the Masses »
What Service Leadership Means to Me »
Empowering Women in Leadership »
Collaborative Leadership »
A Call to Leadership – Get Involved »

Elite Members

+Intention 95.9 The River Aaron’s Above Board Indoor Environmental Accurate Personnel Alarm Detection Systems, Inc. Aurora Bank & Trust Aurora Limousine Aurora University Baird & Warner – Holli Thurston Beans Greens Proteins Caterpillar, Inc. Chicago Steel Hockey Team City Segment ComEd Company 251 Comprehensive Prosthetics and Orthotics Country Financial – West Aurora CyrusOne Do or Dye Designs Dolan & Murphy Downtown Auroran Magazine Eagle Digital Marketing Endiro Coffee First Secure Community Bank ganc.io Gateway Mortgage Group Healthcare Solutions Team – Deepti Srivastava Jiffy Lube Multi-Care Kluber Architects + Engineers Konen Insurance Agency, Inc. Magick Woods, Inc. Magnetrol International, Inc. MedCom Group, LLC •  Midwest Coach Limousine, Inc. Mitutoyo America Corporation Mooney & Thomas P.C. Old Second National Bank New York Life Insurance Company and Nylife Securities, LLC OnLight Aurora Painters District Council 30 Palo Creative, PLL Paramount Arts Centre Pilmer Real Estate Plum Landing Retirement Community Presence Mercy Medical Center Pure Skin Solutions, LLC R.C. Wegman Construction Company Rasmussen College Rich Harvest Farms Rush Copley Medical Center S&S Metal Recyclers II Scientel Solutions ServPro of Aurora Sign*A*Rama SmithAmundsen, LLC Staffing Network, LLC & QPA Staffmark Thoughtwave Software & Solutions Two Brothers Roundhouse Valley Fastener Group, LLC VivirMED, LLC The Voice Waubonsee Community College Weldstar Company Woodforest National Bank World Finance Corporation WSPY

New Members

Saffron Clothing Store
Matt Cannon
Sugar Grove
(402) 968-5721
Apparel

Dunkin Donuts
Raj Patel
444 N. Route 59, Aurora
(630) 788-9200
Restaurants & Taverns

Dunkin Donuts
Raj Patel
3999 75th Street, Aurora
(630) 499-7313
Restaurants & Taverns

Calendar of Events

Fox Valley Networking Professionals
Thursday, May 31, 8 a.m.
Pomegranate Restaurant, 55 S. Commons, Aurora
Sponsored by Pure Skin Solutions

Dedication Ceremony: Fire Museum
Friday, June 1, 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
53 N. Broadway, Aurora
Apple Tree Dedication @ 12 p.m.

Grand Opening: Aurora Collective
Thursday, June 7, 3:30 – 5:30 p.m.
675 Station Blvd, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 4 p.m.

Marketing Lunch & Learn: VIA & ARCC
Thursday, June 14, 12 p.m.
2000 S. Batavia Ave, Suite 110, Geneva

Grand Opening: Telescript Pharmacy
Wednesday, June 20, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
3535 E. New York Street, Suite 117, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 11:30 a.m.

35th Anniversary: Banana Split
Wednesday, June 21, 4 – 5:30 p.m.
820 Church Road, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 4:30 p.m.

Grand Opening: VivirMed
Wednesday, June 27 12:30 – 2 p.m.
630 N. Lake St., Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 1 p.m.

Fox Valley Networking Professionals
Thursday, June 28, 8 a.m.
Pomegranate Restaurant, 55 S. Commons Dr., Aurora
Sponsored by North Star Credit Union

Grand Opening Ribbon Cutting: M14 Hoops
Friday, June 29 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
2414 Church Road., Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 1 p.m.

Aurora Chamber Golf Classic
Thursday, July 12
Orchard Valley Golf Course
2411 West Illinois Ave, Aurora
Sponsorships Available

Coffee & Connections Networking
Tuesday, July 17, 8:30 a.m.
Painters District No. 30, 1905 Sequoia Drive, Aurora

Facebook
Blog
Twitter

Aurora Regional Chamber of Commerce
43 W. Galena Blvd.
Aurora, IL 60506
Phone: (630) 256-3180
Fax: (630) 256-3189

www.aurora-chamber.com

 

#AuroraLeadership Academy Recap

Friday, May 11th, 2018

We are coming up on the last of ten weeks with the 2018 Leadership Academy and I must say it has definitely been worth the while.

From leadership development, social services, cultural diversity, community sustainability, and local government, we have learned much from passionate professionals in these areas.

My biggest takeaway from these sessions has been to have obtainable goals, to be honest with myself, and to listen to others’ needs and desires. These are clues as to how you can help them be successful in their field.

Do not make any preconceived ideas or concepts about anyone. Treat everyone you meet with open arms and a smile; you will no doubt get one in return.

Genuinely listen to what other people have to say, ask questions and comment on the conversation. Be in the habit of doing good deeds for others without expecting anything in return.

Invite them to events and refer them to others that are seeking their type of business. Eventually these good deeds will come back around to you tenfold and remember: People like to do business with people they know and they trust, it’s as simple as that.

A participant in the Aurora Chamber’s 2018 #AuroraLeadership Academy, Michael Latone is a former electrical engineer from Southern Illinois University who has had a long career as an entrepreneur, field engineer for Northrop Grumman, Second City actor, residential real estate broker, and energy consultant. Due to a recent family health issue in 2011, he recently has settled in on the health and wellness industry offering TeleHealth services from 1.800MD. 

Bringing Leadership Awareness to the Masses

Tuesday, May 8th, 2018

I can’t express enough how much I’ve enjoyed participating in this year’s Aurora Chamber Leadership Academy. Each week we have been introduced to a new leader and his or her insight on leadership. Through this insight and recent events in the news, I developed this awesome vision! Dr. Adrienne Coleman and Chief Kristen Ziman teaming together to speak to organizations on cultural diversity and being solution-orientated. What a great formula for a successful business culture! This one-day training would be held at the Paramount and companies would bus or fly their employees in to attend…end vision!

Why is it so important to bring this awareness to the masses?

In Dr. Coleman’s session, we were encouraged to engage in uncomfortable conversations about diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Putting this into practice, I shared with another Leadership Academy participant something I’d never spoken in public. Subconsciously, I think about being black/African American and try to dispel bias thoughts when interacting with customers. My partner in this discussion shared that in his field of business, he hasn’t had to think about his ethnicity. I believe these two perspectives (our truth) is the case with employees within many organizations. As business owners and leaders, it’s important to have these discussions in the workplace. When we learn to respect other’s perspective… we can give respect away freely! And then we can work together to become a solution-oriented organization.

Chief Ziman discussed how the Aurora Police Department has transitioned into a solution-oriented organization. She expressed you can’t change culture overnight, but it does change ever so slowly. And one of the most powerful tools she’s used in this implementation is respect!

Step 1 to developing a solution-oriented organization starts with attitude! We should “give respect freely, don’t wait for it to be earned.”

Step 2, using critical-thinking skills, break the problem apart to understand it from the root to the surface.

Step 3, employ creativity to surface solutions that break the boundaries of traditional thinking and surface differentiating solutions

Step 4 includes disciplining ourselves to adopt the attitude of a champion, commit to focus and analysis, and leverage our creativity, then act.

I gained more insight on how to develop a solution-oriented organization from https://www.huffingtonpost.com/daniel-horgan/4-steps-to-developing-a-solution-orientation-_b_6826514.html

Chief Ziman has done an excellent job of incorporating these steps!

Yolanda Dunn is a participant in the 2018 #AuroraLeadership Academy. She is co-owner with husband Tito Dunn of Leave Me Bee Pest Control, Inc. Leave Me Bee is a full-service pest control company for residential and commercial customers. 

What Service Leadership Means to Me

Tuesday, May 1st, 2018

When you hear the word leader, who comes to mind?  If someone asked me that question a few weeks ago, I would say a leader is the head of an organization, politician, or other lead decision maker.  Participating in the Aurora Chamber’s Leadership Academy, however, has broadened my horizons of leadership.  I was especially intrigued the week we discussed service leadership.  We heard from organizations like Rush Copley, VNA, and Strong Prepared and Ready for Kindergarten (SPARK) and I thought to myself….THIS IS WHAT I DO!  During my short time in the workforce, I’ve switched between different types of service leadership roles.  After college, I started working in a library as a children’s services assistant.  This job wasn’t what I was expecting to do with my life, having graduated with my bachelors in Telecommunications: Broadcast News. Although my path diverted, I enjoyed working in a library, as I was able to use some of my journalistic research skills to help library customers locate information. Plus, working with children was fun.  I was able to read silly books, sing songs, and make crafts!  Who could ask for a better job?

Six years later, though, my path diverted again. I found myself moving to Iowa after my husband got a job at a local newspaper as a reporter. I knew I would need to find work in Iowa, but there weren’t many library positions available.  Luckily, there was an opening for a news director at the local radio station. Starting my new job was strange.  I was new to a community I didn’t know and who didn’t know me. The radio station I worked for was also in direct competition with my husband’s newspaper for reporting stories, so there was this strange competitiveness between the two of us. Being the newbie in town with no connections was hard.  However, after showing up continuously at town meetings and events, I was able to start forming connections.  As I got to know people in the community, I started receiving invites to help out with special projects around town.  I was asked to help with the local chamber’s holiday parade, I became a board member of the local arts council and library, and I was invited to speak to a radio/ television class at a local middle school.  I surprised myself by how much I enjoyed these roles.  I felt like I was making a difference by serving the community.

After a year, however, I knew that my heart was in librarianship and my husband and I moved to Aurora.  As a children’s librarian I enjoy serving the community through helping customers locate needed materials, presenting diverse programs for people of all ages, attending school and community events as a library representative, and always striving to provide customers with what they need. Whether I am hosting a storytime where a child learns the basic skills necessary to start attending preschool, or visiting school literacy nights to highlight all the programs and services the library offers, I truly enjoy serving my community.  Being a part of Leadership Academy has not only helped me establish more opportunities for partnerships between the library and area organizations, but it has given me a glimpse of the Aurora community. I am happy to call Aurora home and help serve this community.

Angela Van Vuren is the children’s services manager at the Eola Road Branch of the Aurora Public Library. She has worked in libraries for more than 10 years. She mostly reads children’s books with her favorites being anything by Jan Thomas or Neil Gaiman. She lives in Aurora with her husband Zack and their dog Hammy. Angela is a participant in this year’s #AuroraLeadership Academy program.

Happy #SmallBusinessWeek

Monday, April 30th, 2018

Aurora Chamber

  In This Issue  

Wednesday: Small Business Expo, Fair »
Premier Investors »
Member News »
Elite Members »
New Members »
Calendar of Events »

Wednesday: Small Business Expo, Fair

Small Business Expo

Premier Investors

Premier Investors

Member News

Aurora Chamber

If you have news to share with your fellow members, please forward to info@aurora-chamber.com. Be sure and check out our blog and social media for what’s happening in our region.
Engineering Enterprises Announces APWA Award-Winning Project, Employee »
Old Second Adds Three Residential Lending Professionals to Team »
Empowering Women in Leadership »
Collaborative Leadership »
Engineering Enterprises Announces Meyer Certification »
Proposal Streamlines Use of Biometrics »
Net Neutrality Battle Heads to Illinois House Floor »
Gov. Rauner Signs Bill to Bring 5G Wireless to Illinois »
A Call to Leadership – Get Involved »
EEI’s Talsma To Retire From Engineering Enterprises »
Proposed Bills Would Stall Jobs, Economic Development »
Workplace Equity over Equality »
Registration is on for Barnyard Dash 5K at Blackberry Farm on April 28 »
Early Detection Saves Lives »
A Cohesive Community »
A Life in the Shadow of a Leader »
Board Nominations Sought »
City of Aurora Raises Smoking Age to 21 »
Courageous Conversation »
Old Second Adds Four to Support Commercial Lines »
‘Col•lab•o•ra•tion’ – Food for Thought »
Aspiring to Servant Leadership »
Spring Yard Waste Collection Begins Next Month »
Re-think “The Best Fit” »
Leadership: Play to Your Strengths »

Elite Members

+Intention 95.9 The River Aaron’s Above Board Indoor Environmental Accurate Personnel Advance Auto Parts Alarm Detection Systems, Inc. Aurora Bank & Trust Aurora Limousine Aurora University Baird & Warner – Holli Thurston Beans Greens Proteins Caterpillar, Inc. Chicago Steel Hockey Team City Segment ComEd Company 251 Comprehensive Prosthetics and Orthotics Copy King Office Solutions, Inc. Country Financial – West Aurora CyrusOne Do or Dye Designs Dolan & Murphy Downtown Auroran Magazine Eagle Digital Marketing Endiro Coffee First Secure Community Bank ganc.io Gateway Mortgage Group Healthcare Solutions Team – Deepti Srivastava Jiffy Lube Multi-Care Kluber Architects + Engineers Konen Insurance Agency, Inc. Magick Woods, Inc. Magnetrol International, Inc. MedCom Group, LLC Meyer Wealth Advisors Midwest Coach Limousine, Inc. Mitutoyo America Corporation Mooney & Thomas P.C. Old Second National Bank New York Life Insurance Company and Nylife Securities, LLC OnLight Aurora Painters District Council 30 Palo Creative, PLL Paramount Arts Centre Pilmer Real Estate Plum Landing Retirement Community Presence Mercy Medical Center Pure Skin Solutions, LLC R.C. Wegman Construction Company Rasmussen College Rich Harvest Farms Rush Copley Medical Center S&S Metal Recyclers II Scientel Solutions ServPro of Aurora Sign*A*Rama SmithAmundsen, LLC Staffing Network, LLC & QPA Staffmark Stonebridge Country Club Thoughtwave Software & Solutions Two Brothers Roundhouse Valley Fastener Group, LLC VivirMED, LLC The Voice Waubonsee Community College Weldstar Company Woodforest National Bank World Finance Corporation WSPY

New Members

Tredwell Coffee
Chad Dawes
14 W Downer Place, Suite 18, Aurora
(630) 897-3433
Coffee & Tea Products

Calendar of Events

Coffee with Congressman Hultgren
Wednesday, May 2, 7:30 – 9:30 a.m.
Belle Salle Banquets, 1920 E. New York St., Aurora

Small Business Expo and Procurement Fair
Wednesday, May 2, 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Belle Salle Banquets, 1920 E. New York St., Aurora
For more information on participating or attending, contact (630) 256-3180

Ribbon Cutting: Rush Copley Medical Group
Thursday, May 3, 3:30 – 6 p.m.
1901 W. Galena, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 4:00 p.m.

Ribbon Cutting: Endiro Coffee
Friday, May 4, 2 – 3:30 p.m.
29 W. New York Street, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 2:30 p.m.

Ribbon Cutting: Aurora Historical Society
Friday, May 4, 3:30 – 5 p.m.
20 E. Downer Place, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 4 p.m.

Ground Breaking: Scientel Solutions
Wednesday, May 9, 10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.
5S045 N. Eola Rd., Aurora
Ceremony @ 11 a.m.

Conversation with Comptroller Mendoza
Monday, May 7, 1 – 3:30 p.m.
Chamber Office, 43 W. Galena Blvd. Aurora

Grand Opening: Pure Skin Solutions
Thursday, May 9, 3:30 – 6 p.m.
26 S. Stolp Avenue, Aurora
Ribbon Cutting @ 4 p.m.

IT Lunch & Learn
Thursday, May 10, 12 – 1:30 p.m.
2000 S. Batavia Ave, Ste, 110, Geneva, IL

Coffee & Connections Networking
Tuesday, May 15, 8:30 – 10 a.m.
Painters District No.30, 1905 Sequoia Drive, Aurora
Sponsored by World Finance Corporation

Facebook

Blog

Twitter

Aurora Regional Chamber of Commerce
43 W. Galena Blvd.
Aurora, IL 60506
Phone: (630) 256-3180
Fax: (630) 256-3189

www.aurora-chamber.com

 

Empowering Women in Leadership

Thursday, April 26th, 2018

As women, we face unique challenges as leaders, whether we work in the corporate world or as a business owner. There are many aspects of leadership, but the core question is this: As strong and capable women, how can we lead by example?

I must admit, in my early days of my career as a leader, I had a few great mentors who cared about me enough to confront me all about leadership. As leaders, we need to be able to recognize people who are not performing at their greatest level and provide support and feedback to them.

I do believe that some people are born leaders and some learn throughout life to become better leaders.

One of the best lessons I learned was that it is not about me. When I made the transition from valuing myself to valuing my people, I was transformed as a leader. When we learn to turn our focus from ourselves to others, the whole world opens up to us. When you understand this and take the focus away from you, it will change who you are as a leader.

As a woman in leadership here are a few nuggets to develop a more authentic Leadership Style.

Yes; authenticity matters. It’s easy to play the game and pander to what others expect us to be in the workplace. Women who lead by mimicking men reveal a lack of professional identity. Professional confidence is not gender-based; it’s all about authenticity and developing the qualities that resonate with who you are.

First, look to leaders you admire. Observe their traits, how they interact within a team and work under pressure.

Second, stop putting yourself first. Leadership is an exercise in service. If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader. As a woman, it’s a tricky balance because as a figure of authority, you must often be the deciding voice on things. Instead of focusing on your authority, let’s start from a place of service by giving support, training, encouragement, mentorship, and resources to the team and business.

Third, find and refine the balance between personal and professional. Get to know your team and set clear boundaries and expectations. When you’re working, it’s important to perform to get results. Professional behavior and authenticity have to go hand in hand. Often a casual leadership approach, which women gravitate towards, can easily be sabotaged by overly personal behavior.

Other good leadership qualities, you would usually see factors like integrity, effective communication, influence, respect, power, human influence, kindness, vulnerability, listening, and accountability. These are all wonderful qualities of a leader, but I am going to share something I believe has helped me and made me stand out as a leader — putting my people ahead of myself.

Some last tips:

• Acknowledge and appreciate people. Everyone wants to be valued. It is critical as a leader to give your people credit and recognition for the incredible things they do.

• Know your people. Getting to know them in a more personal way will make them feel valued and increase their respect for you as a leader.

• Empower your people. Everyone wants to be trusted to make decisions. Empower your people to make certain decisions.

Deepti (Dee) Srivastava is a health Insurance broker with Healthcare Solutions Team. Her specialty is Medicare for seniors, group health insurance for small to mid-size companies, travel insurance, short-term disability, life insurance, and long-term care. She is a proud mom, daughter, sister, wife, woman entrepreneur, and so much more. Dee is a participant in the 2018 #AuroraLeadership Academy.

Collaborative Leadership

Monday, April 23rd, 2018

This last Friday, I had the privilege of listening to Chief Kristen Ziman speak in front of my Aurora Leadership Academy’s weekly meeting. She not only provided a history of her work as a police officer, she also explained to all of us how she personally evolved as a leader.

She mentioned that even when faced with a situation today, she will lean on the knowledge of her commanders when she is unsure on how to handle a situation that arises. Rather than make a quick and uninformed decision, she will collaborate with other members of her team to ensure that the decision made is in the best interest of everyone involved.

While it’s hard for me to relate to the large-scale decisions Chief Ziman has to make on a daily basis, I can relate to engaging others when making a decision in my professional life.

I am still relatively young in my field when compared to my peers. Because of this, I tend to lean on more experienced co-workers when I have a difficult decision to make. I will start with saying what my gut instinct is, and then listen to their suggestions. Even if I know my initial choice is correct, I will go to them for validation on my thoughts.

By doing this, I am not only making sure I am making the best decision for my company and/or my customer, but I am also furthering my knowledge to better myself in my career.

Will Garcia has delivered commercial banking solutions for over 5 years working with small to mid-size businesses in the Chicagoland area, serving currently as a Commercial Banking Representative at Old Second National Bank. He is a graduate of the University of St. Francis in Joliet and is pursuing a MBA from NIU. He is a participant in the Aurora Regional Chamber of Commerce’s 2018 Leadership Academy program.

A Call to Leadership – Get Involved

Tuesday, April 17th, 2018

What a privilege it has been to be a participant in this year’s Aurora Leadership Academy. The past six weeks have been thought provoking, motivational, and inspiring. We have had presentations on a variety of topics, such as social service, equity, diversity, and sustainability, each of which have left me thinking about leadership in a new way. This past week was no exception.

We had the opportunity to meet with the City of Aurora’s Deputy Mayor, Chuck Nelson, who shared with us his wealth of experience as a local government leader. I appreciated his perspective on the meaningful role that local government plays in quality of life. He talked about how our perception of the world is what we see outside our front window. The question that resonated with me most: If the view out your window is not what you would like to see, is there an opportunity to become more informed about what you can do to change it?

Mr. Nelson shared with us how this has been demonstrated in the City of Aurora. Years ago many people were displeased with the high crime rates throughout the city, so residents mobilized within their districts by working with their Alderman to learn what they could do to reduce crime in Aurora. As a result, Neighborhood Watch groups were formed. These groups were established throughout the city’s districts in collaboration with the Mayor’s office and had a significant impact on reducing crime. Mr. Nelson said some of the Neighborhood Watch groups were comprised of hundreds of residents, and many of the groups still meet to this day.

The people in these communities exhibited leadership by deciding to take action rather than idly watch their community continue to be afflicted by the ongoing crime issues. They worked with the leaders of their local government to find out what they could do that could make a difference. We can all answer the call to serve as leaders in our own communities by making the choice to get involved in the issues that our community faces. By getting involved we become more informed and can work together to bring effective change to improve the community we serve.

Claire Johnson is the manager of Planning & Business Development at Rush Copley Medical Center, a 210-bed community hospital in Aurora. She lives in Downers Grove with her husband, Andrew, and their dog, Bear. While she is a resident of Downers Grove, she has thoroughly enjoyed learning more about the community she works in as a participant in the 2018 Leadership Academy presented by the Aurora Regional Chamber of Commerce.

Workplace Equity over Equality

Wednesday, April 11th, 2018

Equality is the state of being equal, especially in status, rights, and opportunities. Equity the quality of being fair and impartial.

Society is working so hard toward equality, we seem to think equity is simply unfair; we have forgotten that everyone is different and, therefore, requires different opportunities to be successful.

Everyone is born into this world with different economic classes, different backgrounds, personalities, and traits. All of these play a role in the development of each person, making us all different; therefore, we need to treat our employees like unique individuals instead of a group of average people.

We all have probably seen the image that depicts three people trying to watch a baseball game from behind a fence: one tall, one medium, and one small. They are all standing on boxes. Only two out of three of them can see the game while standing on the box. This is equality; it can be tough to understand, but equality can only work if everyone starts from the same place.

Using the example from the baseball game, if everyone was the same height, equality would be perfect and make complete sense. Unfortunately, that’s not how life works; you can see this in the equity or fairness depiction.

Our differences can create barriers to participation. Before we give everyone the same treatment in the workplace, we have to make sure that we are catering towards everyone’s unique strengths and weaknesses in order to make sure everyone has the same opportunity to succeed.

With equality, we are giving everyone the same tools to be successful but only basing it on how the average person works or acts. The similarities between this and equity are pretty evident, but the main difference is that most people aren’t average. Giving them all the same tools sounds like a good idea in the beginning, but it’s tough for some people to use these tools if they simply will not work for that individual.

It’s not about teaching them to be average; it’s about using the unique way that they were built to give each individual a separate, catered treatment that leans more toward their strengths.

Leaders in the workplace, which include anyone who has supervision over someone else, play a very important role in every business. Leaders are mentors. The main part of their job is to do everything in their power to help the people under them grow and learn so that someday they too can be successful in a leadership role. We need equity in the workplace because we need to treat our employees like unique individuals instead of a group of average people.

Brandon Lyon is the president of City Segment, a marketing agency focused on local strategies, and a participant in the 2018 Aurora Chamber Leadership Academy.