[Throwback] Healthy Company Cultures: More Than Standing Desks and Yoga Classes | Rachel Druckenmiller

Rachel Druckenmiller is the founder of UNMUTED, where she works with leaders and their teams to build resilience and better relationships. When this throwback episode was first released Rachel was the Director of Wellbeing at SIG, where she acted as a catalyst in releasing possibilities for her people.

Many people think a healthy company means promoting healthy food, standing desks, and yoga programs, but these important initiatives only scratch the surface. For Rachel, a true healthy culture is one with underlying values that give employees the opportunity to grow, learn, and contribute to something bigger than themselves. 

Truth You Can Act On:

1. Inspire Employees to Connect and Build Relationships
Supporting Quote
Rachel Druckenmiller: “When it comes to relationships, this is making sure that you have somebody that’s a peer that you respect and admire, that can be your go-to person. As a leader there’s this idea that it’s lonely at the top. It’s true a lot, because what we can do as leaders is, when we start to feel insecure or limited or incompetent in some way or afraid, someone’s going to find this out, we isolate, and that is one of the worst things we can do.”

2. Provide Immediate Growth Opportunities
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Rachel Druckenmiller: “I think back to when I started out, I mean, I was probably 22 years old and just starting in the wellness space, and I found out about this conference. That’s apparently like, you know, an important conference in my industry. And I went to our CEO and I said, ‘Hey, I think that I could learn a lot by going to this.’  I made a case for it and how I was going to come back and use the principles I learned, and he gave me permission to go. And you know, I think I was actually at an event, an HR event, a couple of months ago, and I overheard this guy saying, ‘Yeah, there’s this employee, we have this young employee, and he came in and you know, he’s only been there for two years and he thinks he can go to this conference. I had to wait 10 years to go to that buddy.’ That mentality is going to cause a lot of people to leave your company. If you think that they have to, you know, kind of go through whatever drudgery you had to go through to get to where you are, like, people don’t want to wait anymore.”

3. Involve Employees in Work Bigger than Themselves
Supporting Quote
Rachel Druckenmiller: “I think what really makes a difference relationally is if we were to recognize that every single person that we interact with wants to feel seen, heard, known, valued, and light, and they want to feel like they matter. At all levels, people want to feel this, and so I try to take that mindset into the work that I do. The conversations that I have with leadership, the conversations I have with my peers and with clients is that, look, we’ve got to just wake up, and we’ve got to start noticing people and recognizing that everybody’s dealing with stuff and everybody has dreams, and everybody wants to feel like they matter.”

4. Get to Know Your People
Supporting Quote
Rachel Druckenmiller: “One of the things that he has to say from a relational standpoint is that leaders have to care and they can’t care for people that they don’t know. And a lot of times in organizations I think people see their employees as just their role or just their position and a box to check. They don’t really invest in them or get to know them. One of the things I’ve experienced and in talking with other organizations that have done this effectively is they invite the person to show up beyond their role at work. So they know their kids, they ask questions, they know their spouse. It actually doesn’t take that much energy to do this, but people just don’t do it.”

5. Develop Employee Plans to Help Achieve Their Dreams 
Supporting Quote
Rachel Druckenmiller: “There’s a really great book called The Dream Manager written by Matthew Kelly, and it’s about this organization that brings in these people called dream managers. Then they actually have roles literally in the organization that support people to reach their dreams. So for instance, maybe somebody wants to buy a house. They’re the first person in their family that would be a homeowner, or they want to get a college degree or they want to, you know, go on a trip somewhere, or they want to get to a certain level in the organization. They literally assign these people who are employees to work with pretty much any employee in the company to kind of help them set up a strategy for how they can reach their dreams.”

6. Raise Your Hand and Ask for Help
Supporting Quote
Rachel Druckenmiller: “As a leader, a model, you need to be willing to ask for help. There’s a perception that if you’re leading that you have it all together and you have it all figured out. No. Show me that person who has it all figured out and all together.”

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