Culture of Appreciation

By now, you’ve heard us talk a lot about our core values. While we love each and every one of them, living by a Culture of Appreciation just might be the most important one. Take a look at what our team has to say about what it means to live Culture of Appreciation every day.

Kim McKeeman, CEO

Culture of appreciation” is very likely my favorite core value.  Being valued is something we all crave as people.  Our appreciation is something we can give freely – and we should.  It’s truly a pay-it-forward mentality. We all know how it feels when someone notices something as small as a different hairstyle or as significant as knocking a project out of the park. For me, “culture of appreciation” is a way of life and I’m delighted that our team members, our clients and our business colleagues feel the same.

Caroline Schmid, Vice President

Before I came to McKeeman, “culture” seemed like more of a buzzword or a box to check than a core value. Where surface-y perks like stocked break rooms, nerf darts and a “cool” office were considered adequate replacements for meaningful, open and honest feedback or professional growth. Let’s just say…I didn’t last long at those places. More often than not, you spend more time with your work family than your actual family and, for me, if that workplace is not an environment that is motivating, kind, and positive, than that just doesn’t do it for me. McKeeman, on the other hand, is my home away from home – a place where I’m not only challenged but valued and appreciated. Kim is actually the “keeper of our culture” and it’s even documented on our company accountability chart so it comes straight from the top. And it’s a job that she takes very seriously – so much so, that I’ll be celebrating 10 years next year. 

Whitney Williams, Account Supervisor

Fortunately for this almost 31-year-old, my first job out of college was with McKeeman Communications. I’ve now worked with Kim for almost 9 years. And although there are many reasons I’m proud to be growing with the company, one of the obvious is the focus on creating a Culture of Appreciation. In college, you’re peppered with horror stories of future bosses not caring about your “entry level” issues, not focusing enough on your growth, and really not creating a space where employees feel confident in speaking up, sharing opinions and having a little fun. Well that wasn’t the case and has never been the case with McKeeman Communications. Kim leads our team by example, always asking how we’re doing, creating new ways to track our development as individuals, and celebrating not only the big wins, but the small. As an employee, I’ve always felt valued, appreciated and important. That’s special and that’s why creating a Culture of Appreciation is so important to me.

Katie Parker, Account Supervisor

Last year – Kim had our leadership team read a great book Radical Candor – now granted I’m still wrapping it up, but that’s beside the point. The message of that book is a great example of our Culture of Appreciation, because it’s focused on valuing us all as individuals and as human beings, even when we need to have tough conversations.

Coming from a tough industry like television news, I can’t say that I ever felt valued, cherished or celebrated as an individual. It’s just not in the DNA. At McKeeman Communications, we acknowledge each person’s impact on our business, how they help us grow, learn and evolve. But we’re also there to celebrate one another and catch each other when we fall. That’s what Culture of Appreciation means to me.

Shannon Sadler, Senior Account Executive

True or False: Over 60% of employees report they have not received any recognition or appreciation for a job well done in the past 12 months? 

I have had countless friends complain to me that they are working for misguided leaders and workplaces – leaders or companies that do not show their employees consistent or authentic appreciation. Great leaders understand the value of showing appreciation to those whom they are leading. They realize, that by building a culture where all team members feel valued and support one another, the goals of the business are reached more efficiently and not at the expense of employee burnout. Fortunately for me, I’ve had the privilege to work for extremely wonderful leaders who value the idea of creating a Culture of Appreciation within their team – and let me tell you, all of their businesses continue to be more successful each year. By the way – the answer to the question above is True.

Becky Ogburn, Account Executive

I have worked a lot of places in my day and never really experienced Culture of Appreciation until I began working at McKeeman. There is something so nice about being appreciated – whether that’s with a heartfelt email or note, a phone call, a surprise gift on your desk or a team outing. All of those things have been shared by Kim with each of our team members and it has made a huge difference in the overall atmosphere at work. Plus, it makes you work just a little harder 😊 Honestly, while it’s nice to be on the receiving side, it’s really fulfilling to be the one giving it as well. Just sending a nice notecard (who does that anymore?) can make someone’s day, and who doesn’t need a little boost, especially today 😊

Victoria O’Neal, Account Executive

To me, the best thing about living by a Culture of Appreciation isn’t just the fun outings or the happy hours – it’s that our entire team lives it every day. We support each other when workloads start to pile up, we always share kudos for a job well done, and the growth of each member of the team is always a top priority. I know most people say, “oh my coworkers are like family,” but at McKeeman that’s actually true. These ladies are my friends, my mentors, my sisters and the best personal and professional support system a girl could ask for. 

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