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Convenient Workplace Exercises for The Busy Professional

by Scott Schramm

Approximately 40% of all employed people in the United States aged 19-64 work as professionals or managers, according to The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Much of this work is performed while seated at a computer for several hours a day, five days a week. This can create difficulty in focusing on an individual’s well-being. It is crucial to supplement your work life with exercise to ensure a healthy mind, body, and attitude. This post showcases three simple exercises that can be performed at the office to help improve your overall well-being.  For additional exercises or to establish a personal exercise plan, please visit my website, SchrammerTimeFitness.com.

Stair Climbs

Stair climb

This is an extremely simple exercise that benefits desk workers by strengthening calves, quads, hamstrings, and glutes. These are the biggest muscles in your body and require maximum calorie burn for muscle repair. Follow these preliminary goals for the best results:

  • Four reps up and down 8-12 stairs
  • One minute break
  • Repeat twice more

With regular practice, climbing stairs will become much easier and you will be able to set higher goals. These goals allow most of your calories to be burned while at rest, making the exercise incredibly time efficient for your busy workday.

Wall Sits

Wall sit

Wall sits will greatly improve a desk worker’s posture if performed regularly. The focus is to correctly place pressure in your hips and legs instead of in your back. Wall sits are so simple, they can be performed while waiting for a meeting or after returning from the water cooler. Here’s how to get started:

  • Press your back and the back of your head into the wall
  • Walk your feet out a bit (shoulder width is preferred)
  • Point your toes slightly outward
  • Slide down the wall until your upper legs are parallel with the floor
  • Start with three to five 30-second sets
  • Progress up to 60 and 90-second sets

Bridge

Bridge

The bridge is another simple exercise that every professional can perform at the office. Many desk workers experience lower back pain and this exercise will strengthen that area. Pairing this exercise with wall sits regularly will reduce the frequency and severity of lower back pain.

  • Lie on the floor or a mat on your back with your head down
  • Keep your hands and feet on the floor with your knees bent
  • Extend your pelvis upwards and hold there for a one count
  • Return to the starting position
  • Begin with three sets of ten reps
  • Increase sets and reps with progression

Strong legs, good posture, and a durable lower back should be of primary concern for desk workers when contemplating an exercise routine that can be performed during the work day. With these exercises in your arsenal, you are well on your way to a healthier well-being without sacrificing time or commitment to your job.

My Journey to Become a Strategic Consultant

Part 1: The Beginning

by Terry Langholdt

When I was 10 years old, my grandfather Russell told me, “If you want to write a good story, grab their attention.  Start at the end, and then take them to the beginning.”

I am 48 years old, married, with a family and an incredible group of friends.  I work for a company that “gets it.”  Our company’s core, or GPS, includes leadership, faith, integrity, passion, and community.  Our company’s vision consists of six words:  balance, transparency, commitment, teamwork, excellence and inspire.  We work hard, play hard, and I am extremely proud to say that we even pray together.  Together, we are family.  We celebrate together.  We cry together.  And we rely on each other.  This togetherness makes J&M an amazing company to work for.

I have been blessed with a passion for IT, which I discovered when I was 12 years old when my math teacher introduced me to an Apple computer.  It was the most pleasant green screen my eyes had ever seen.  I was immediately hooked, and wanted to understand everything about this exciting new technology.

When I was 13, I worked an entire summer to save up and buy my first computer.  The drive to learn how to program was so compelling that I took nighttime college courses while finishing the eighth grade.  These classes were comprised of people that were much older than me, which was uncomfortable at the time.  But once we got into the lessons, our shared interest and eagerness to learn allowed me to relate with them.  That’s when I realized that I could  turn my knowledge into something much bigger.  

At 14, I wrote my first “system” to print customer labels for a local business.  Manually writing these labels took an entire day, once a month.  I was compelled to find a way to automate this repetitive, time consuming task.  This was the first time I saw the value and efficiency that IT held in automation.  Still, I wanted to make these systems faster.  That process only took one day out of the month, but it took me almost two months to write it.  It only fed my desire to find innovative ways to write programs, and to learn how to type faster.  That provided the motivation I needed so that I could take the next step.

I was now 16, and this drive to improve technology led to a week-long course at a University that was reserved for college students.  Imagine the tenacity of a high schooler to meet with the head of the college department and convince him to let you attend after he had rejected your application on the first attempt because you were not old enough.  I worked three jobs to be able to afford this class.  I wanted this more than anything and wasn’t about to miss out.

TO BE CONTINUED…

It’s SchrammerTime at J&M Strategic Consulting

J&M Strategic Consulting is pleased to welcome Scott Schramm as our new Wellness Coordinator!  Scott is an at-home personal trainer who has been working with Jen and Mike since the beginning of the year. In that time, Scott has delivered results while displaying a mentality that falls in line with J&M’s Vision & Values. According to Vice President Mike Dodge, “it didn’t take long to realize Scott would be a good fit with our culture and that he had something to offer our team.”

In addition to keeping J&M fit, Scott owns SchrammerTime Fitness providing personal training in the Pittsburgh area and fitness programs for everyone. Scott’s motto of Train Hard, Get Smart, and Have Fun Doing It reflects his approach to improving his clients’ fitness. We’re excited to apply Scott’s motto to the J&M team.

Feel free to check out his website, www.schrammertimefitness.com, to learn more about J&M’s newest member and read his incredible story.  Please join us in welcoming Scott to our team.

J&M to Attend Elevation Outcry Tour in Pittsburgh

by Koby Uhrig

At J&M, we believe the one thing that sets us apart is our people.  Creating a custom IT strategy is only a small piece of the pie that represents our success and reputation.  Our team completes that pie by fulfilling J&M’s vision & values in everything that we do.

Each month, we take the necessary time to review how our team is tracking towards J&M’s goals while upholding the vision & values.  Faith in the workplace is part of that discussion.  Our J&M team members review a given sermon once a month, and relate it to the business.  The focus is solely on important life lessons that can be used at a personal level or at the business level.

Now, faith is a topic that can sometimes cause an uproar or a sense of uneasiness within conversation.  I, personally, have never been open about it but have always respected everyone’s beliefs.  Whether I am involved in J&M’s conversations or not, I am always able to take something away that leaves me with something to work on personally.  That’s what it is all about.  At J&M, we don’t stop at creating better businesses.  We create better people.

“You know, many people believe that faith in the workplace is a no-no,” Jen Dodge states.  “We provide an optional, flexible, no pressure learning experience for our employees to share…no matter what their faith is.  Today, one of our employees told us that she feels she’s stepped up her faith due to those sessions.  Watching your employees grow is such a great feeling.”

Jen, Cheryl, Linda, and Natalie of the J&M team will be enjoying their “ladies night” one week from today, May 2nd, at the Elevation Outcry Tour at PPG Paints Arena in downtown Pittsburgh, PA.  We invite you to join them in a celebration of faith including live music, readings, and more.  For additional information on the event, including other cities and dates, visit their website.  Join J&M in the discussion and help create a better you!

Account Executive Opportunity with J&M

 

J&M Strategic Consulting is looking for an Account Executive responsible for outside sales. This is a national sales position, with preference that the person is based out Ohio or Pennsylvania. Focus will be on selling consulting services including assessments, road mapping, implementation, process improvement and organizational analysis. This candidate must come with existing relationships, leads and a book of business not subject to existing non-compete agreements. The compensation package includes salary plus a generous commission, uncommon to the IT industry. Other benefits include health insurance, simple IRA match as well as other potential bonus earnings.

RESPONSIBILITIES OF POSITION:

  • Identify leads, manage prospects and acquire new business.
  • Build relationship with potential clients.
  • Work closely with marketing to prepare material for sales calls.
  • Partner with recruiting to place consultants.
  • Prepare and deliver weekly sales status.
  • Expanding existing relationships.

EXPECTATIONS

  • Uphold J&M Strategic Consulting Vision and Values.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Must be self-motivated and able to work independently to meet or exceed goals.
  • Must be organized with good time management skills.
  • Possess proven analytical/problem solving solutions for the customer and the company.
  • Experience in developing and executing territory sales strategies.
  • Possess strong presentation, negotiation, and closing skills.
  • Must have reliable transportation.

QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Proven outstanding sales track record.
  • Legally eligible to work in the United States.
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Business preferred.
  • Minimum 5 years selling consulting services.

Are your meetings costing you money?

by Koby Uhrig

An email recently circulated through J&M about meeting etiquette and recognizing the importance of being focused on the preparation and structure of a business meeting.  Every business reviews its policies and expectations for meetings, but how do you maximize productivity in a business meeting?  Time is valuable to any business, so it is important to have all attendees on the same page.

Obviously, effective communication is critical to a business meeting, and this starts in the meeting’s development stage.  Every attendee is responsible for understanding the purpose in order to enhance the overall effectiveness of the meeting.

We’ve talked so much in the past about the direct impact relationships have on business and communication.  These relationships can really drive the productivity of the meeting.  In addition to preparing for the content that will be discussed, it is key to get to know everyone that will be at the meeting.  An email could be sent out with a brief background of yourself for others to get to know you.  Or, better yet, arrive early.  This shows you are prepared, ready to go, and provides an opportunity to mingle with someone you do not know or have not worked with before.

While relationships can keep a conversation going, it is ultimately up to the attendees to be heard.  Meetings are set up to reach a common goal or to discuss a given topic within the company.  They are created so that everyone involved has the ability to provide input.  It is one thing to check into the meeting, but it is another to participate.  When invited to a meeting, you are expected to reveal any questions or concerns so the entire team is on the same page and can exceed the common goal.

Our president, Jen Dodge, once saved a project over $7,000 a week by making the following suggestions to the Project Sponsor in regards to recurring meetings:

>> Meetings are meant for collaboration only; information sharing should be through email, SharePoint, Corporate Information Sharing vehicles.

>> Agenda and purpose must be clear; parking lot all discussions that don’t contribute to the purpose.

>>Do your homework prior to the meeting; Organizer should set alerts to remind them about their homework.

>> Leadership should not tolerate late or unprepared attendees; lead by example.

>>Invite only the necessary resources; the FYI resources should be copied on the meeting minutes.

 

J&M has experience working with many different companies that employ people of all different backgrounds.  When taking on a new challenge, we take the necessary time to thoroughly understand the business and the people we are working with.  This perpetuates successful meetings in the short term and extraordinary results in the long term.  Build your company’s working relationship with J&M today.

Happy New Year?

It’s officially transition time for your business.  You are nearing the end of your fiscal year and want to gain some momentum as the new fiscal year opens.  So how do you stay on track and lead your business to success as the fiscal year changes?  It is important to track progress made in the past year and build on it moving forward.  At J&M, we are here to help this process.  We offer a number of services directed at guiding your team along the correct path as you embark on the new fiscal year.

  • Complete assessment
  • Plotting a roadmap
  • Resource management
  • Organizational readiness

With over 100 years of combined experience, J&M Strategic Consulting knows what it takes to ensure long term success.  We value your time and resources just as much as you do and will create a custom strategy guaranteed to be unique for your business.  J&M has all the tools to assess your company’s readiness to turn the corner.

One of our goals at J&M with every new challenge is to exceed your expectations.  That is why we take the necessary time to perform a complete assessment of your business to discover what is working and where you can improve.  An assessment can be a very useful tool at the change of a fiscal year as our team analyzes your resource management and will provide any recommendations to efficiently complete upcoming projects.  This allows us to construct a roadmap towards success for the upcoming fiscal year, and J&M will start you out on the right foot.

At J&M, we are committed to guiding your team down the right path towards success in the new fiscal year.  Our experienced consultants have all the tools you need to make this transition a smooth one.  Check out what we have done for other businesses on our testimonials page.  We wish you all the best in your next fiscal year.

J&M to Sponsor Give Pack Golf Classic

We are extremely proud to announce that J&M Strategic Consulting will be the official Raider Blue & Black sponsor for the Give Pack Golf Classic on Monday, June 19th at Cranberry Highlands Golf Course.  Hosted by Victory Family Church, the Give Pack Golf Classic is a fundraising event that benefits underprivileged K-12 students in the Seneca Valley and Ellwood City school districts.

Give Pack is an outreach of Giving Back to Cranberry Township, a nonprofit organization that strives to improve the lives of people living in Cranberry Township and surrounding communities.  According to their president Matt Gates, “one in every eight Seneca Valley students are currently on a free and reduced lunch program.”  All proceeds for the event will provide these students with backpacks full of school supplies that they cannot afford on their own.

At J&M, we strive to uphold our vision & values in everything that we do.  We view this sponsorship as a perfect opportunity to show who we are outside of the business setting.  It has always been our passion to go above and beyond when helping people and inspire them to become leaders of their own.

J&M is not only serving the community, but we are building relationships with excellent people that share similar values.  This opportunity is an honor for our company and we are taking our role in the event very seriously.  We encourage you to join us in supporting this great cause.

J&M Adds Ted Rasbach as Facilities Intern

J&M Strategic Consulting is delighted to welcome Ted Rasbach to the team as our new Facilities Intern.  Ted has completed multiple subpar painting projects in the past for J&M, so this unpaid position provides an excellent opportunity for both Ted and the business to grow.  While the rest of our team handles the important parts of the business, Ted will be there to keep our office looking interesting and provide us with snacks when we ask, given his background as a flight attendant.

In his free time, Ted enjoys fat cats, visiting his daughter in New York, leaving his grill’s gas on, and drinking boxed wine.  One of his favorite hobbies is playing bad music at the local bar that nobody but himself appreciates.  Ted will make our office an exciting place to be.  At the ripe age of 50, he is sure to keep us laughing.

Happy April Fool’s Day, Ted!

Location Location Location

 

We’ve all heard that location is critical to a successful business. While this is still true in some industries, most of our jobs can be done remotely. Being able to build a working relationship is more important than sitting in the same building.  In today’s technology driven world, it is cost effective to use online resources to enhance relationships with new and old clients.  J&M believes in the benefits of working with people remotely and creating healthy, long-term business relationships.

No matter the size or type of project, J&M is committed to leveraging its core values to help you succeed.  We want to maximize productivity and over deliver results.  That’s why we take the necessary time to assess all parts of the project.  When working with your business, we ensure that your standards are met and goals are reached.  You likely have multiple assignments ongoing at the same time.  J&M can simplify your business activities by setting a clear path for your entire team on a specific project, completely based on your needs.

Managing a portfolio of multiple projects at one time can make for a hectic workplace and a limited budget.  You may not have complete resources on-site to be able to successfully close out a project, and that’s okay.  J&M will take this into consideration while assessing your needs for the project at hand.  Our experienced consultants can provide you with a convenient off-site plan to please your budget with the same commitment guarantee.  This allows you additional access to resources and connection to a member of our team at the touch of a button.

Here are some of our recent success stories while working off-site with clients:

  • Completely remote
    • J&M upgraded a global network as part of managed services.
  • Remote preparation, on-site execution
    • J&M executed a desktop migration remotely and completed a cutover on-site.
  • Half remote
    • J&M designed an internal rebate web site for a marketing agency.

We have many more examples that we would be happy to discuss. You can see how past clients have reviewed J&M on our Testimonials page.  We are extremely proud of these clients’ views of our company, and some of them originated from remote projects.  In fact, some of our most effective results have spawned from remote work.  We can work with you remotely all the way through a project, or until you request our on-site attention.