People Are Talking!

By Cindy Bahl

How often do you rate, review or give a testimony about a business when you’ve used their services? Maybe you’ve had some work done on your car from a trusted local mechanic who not only took care of the services you paid for but also discovered a potential problem and made recommendations, saving you time and money while also providing great customer service. Did you take the time to give your mechanic a positive review?

Testimonials, reviews and ratings are especially important today in business. Most of us are using websites such as Google, Yelp, and Facebook to check out ratings and what people are saying about a business before purchasing a product or trying out a service. We want to know what others think and what their experience was like before we decide to try something new. Companies are working hard to get consumers to rate and write reviews, some even offer incentives like coupons or discounts on future transactions, all to help boost sales, create awareness and engagement with their audience.

So, if you missed the Amplify! Success event last October and are unsure about registering for our 2nd annual event coming up October 23rd at Nike WHQ in Beaverton, don’t take my word for it that you should to attend! Here are just a few testimonials from past attendees:

  • “What an inspiring event. I learned so much and am looking forward to learning much more.” Maria Isabel Chandra, MBA – HR Administrator, Latino Network
  • “Such a wonderful presentation and stories.” Stacy Ruthrauff – HR Director, City of Tualatin
  • “Amazing Event!” Jennifer Edeline – Supervisor, Talent Acquistion, Providence Health & Services

People are talking about Amplify! Success and you won’t want to miss this year’s event with the theme: Disability Workplace Inclusion: What is Your Vision? It promises to be a morning with inspiration and information to help you create a vision for inclusion for yourself and in your workplace. We can’t wait to share your testimonies!

Amplify! Success is a program of Dirkse Counseling and Consulting, Inc.

For more information or to become a Sponsor of Amplify! Success 2018, contact Amplify! Event Coordinator, Cindy Bahl at: 503-258-7715 or cindy@dirksecc.com.

What Is Your Vision?

By Cindy Bahl

According to SHRM (The Society for Human Resource Management) “a vision statement looks forward and creates a mental image of the ideal state that the organization wishes to achieve.”  By developing a vision for the future, businesses can create a guide for the growth they want to see in their company, whether that’s creating an environment for creativity, a focus on improving their community, or advocating for the inclusion of all people in the workforce.

The 2nd annual Amplify! Success event theme is: “Disability Workplace Inclusion: What is Your Vision?” Amplify! Success will assist you in creating your own vision statement and inspire you to create a vision of inclusion, wherever you are.  Inclusion starts with YOU as an individual and with YOU as a member of a larger community and organization.  Regardless of your position or role, YOU can make a difference in disability diversity and inclusion by creating your own vision for inclusiveness.

Plan now to join us on Tuesday, October 23rd, 2018 from 9:00am-1:00pm at Nike WHQ in Beaverton, Tiger Woods Conference Center for a fast-paced, high energy morning full of inspiration and information.  Registration is now open and includes:

  • Breakfast, Networking & Lunch
  • Inspirational Keynote Speaker, Karen Gaffney
  • Guest Speakers from Inclusion Leaders at Nike & OHSU
  • 2 Professional Development Breakout Sessions & More!

Amplify! Success is a program of Dirkse Counseling and Consulting, Inc.

For more information or to become a Sponsor of Amplify! Success 2018, contact Amplify! Event Coordinator, Cindy Bahl at: 503-258-7715 or cindy@dirksecc.com.

What Employers Are SAYING About Getting “AMPED-UP” with Training on Disability Inclusion in the Workforce

It’s been 5 months since the 1st annual Amplify Success! Event created by Dirkse CC from a grant through The State of Oregon Employment First initiative with the goals of empowering, equipping and inspiring local employers to become more diverse and inclusive in their hiring practices; specifically around individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD).

So where are we now?  What progress has been made and where are we going in the next several months?

Dirkse CC has met with 13 employers who took the Oregon Employment First Disability Diversity Challenge and who accepted the challenge to get all “amped up” and start the conversation about their diversity disability goals and initiatives. From those conversations an action plan was developed for each organization based on their needs and schedule.

Trainings have begun with three of the organizations using “Windmills, Changing the Perception of Ability” an internationally renowned disability diversity program created and published by Milt Wright and Associates and Dr. Richard Pimentel, Keynote Speaker of the Amplify Success! event.   Two more are scheduled to start in April and May with others on the horizon for summer of 2018.

Employers have had different levels of previous disability inclusion training and even with the most experienced, attendees report that it is important to have a refresher and to challenge current ways of thinking.  Attendees who are just getting started have found the information to be important and timely in today’s workplace.

Attendees were asked to rate the training from 1-5 with 5 being the highest rating.  The trainings to date were given an average of 4.7/5.0 with comments from participants such as:

 “I liked the interaction among the group”

“I enjoyed the activities and conversation”

 “I liked the discussion and exercises and enjoyed the interaction with fellow students.”

 “It made the training more interactive and a better way to learn.”

Presenters were very welcoming and made for a safe environment.”

In addition, Dirkse CC Certified Trainers have presented the first of three, free “Brown Bag” Lunchtime Workshops open to any employer interested in the subject matter.  Registration is required for the upcoming workshops:

March 29th 11-1pm – Disability Fact or Fiction & Taking the Emotion Out of Emotional Disabilities

April 26th, 11-1pm – Pick-A-Disability & The Rumor Game

All modules are interactive and valuable to any Employer, HR Professional, Manager or Supervisor to help identify self-awareness of disability bias in the workplace and to strengthen disability diversity in the workforce.  The Brown Bag Workshops are perfect for those employers with less than 8 individuals to train in order for successful interactive learning.

It’s not too late for your company or organization to take the challenge and take advantage of these grant-funded activities!  Contact us today for your free consultation and recommendations for disability diversity training.

Next up… Amplify Success Rock Stars – Thursday, May 31st, 8-10am at Embassy Suites by Hilton, Portland-Washington Square.  Register today to come and celebrate employers and individuals who have made strides in their disability diversity goals.  A Workforce Panel discussion will include local employers who will share insight, encouragement and challenges with their inclusive programs and initiatives.

Featured Panelists include honored guests listed below with more to come!

Jenny Marston
City of Beaverton
Assistant City Attorney

Riikka Salonen
Diversity Talent Acquisition
Oregon Health and Science University

Scott Youngblood
General Manager
Embassy Suites by Hilton, Washington Square, Portland-Tigard

To become a sponsor or for more information contact: Cindy Bahl, Dirkse CC Business Development & Amplify Rock Stars Event Coordinator – 503-258-7715 or cindy@dirksecc.com/info@amplifysuccess.org

We are here for you; to assist you and your business/organization with your disability diversity initiatives in 2018.  Because we believe:

Disability inclusion matters

It benefits business

It benefits us all.

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Are YOU a Rock Star?

When you think of Rock Stars who do you think of; The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, or maybe Elvis Presley, the “King of Rock and Roll”?  They all may be considered worthy of the Rock Star status but what did they do to deserve it?  Don’t get me wrong, they are all gifted and talented with their unique styles and sounds but that is really all they did; share their talents with us and get paid lots of money to do it; how lucky for them!

What about the rest of us?  Why can’t we be “Rock Stars” too?  You might say “I don’t have that kind of talent”, or “I don’t sing or play and instrument, what can I do?”  Well, what can YOU do?  You can choose to be a Rock Star and make a difference in someone’s life by helping them find and develop their talents, skills and abilities.  You can help a person find their meaning and purpose in the work they do, in the way they contribute to their community and society; you can help them belong.  You can be a mentor to someone individually or corporately your organization or business can provide opportunities for individuals with disabilities, specifically those with Intellectual and Development Disabilities (I/DD) who are often left out and not given the chance to show their talent, skills and abilities.

We all have the ability to be a “Rock Star”, the question remains; what will YOU do?  I hope you’ll join me at our upcoming event “Amplify Success Rock Stars” on Thursday, May 31st, 8:00am-10:00am at Embassy Suites by Hilton, Washington Square, as we celebrate and share success stories of people who have chosen to make a difference.  Some have just started along the path of developing a diversity plan that includes people with I/DD and others are moving forward with training to equip their teams to work with individuals with disabilities.  We will also celebrate individuals who have shown their rock star abilities in their community and at their jobs. Plan now to come and be inspired, encouraged and to celebrate everyone as “Rock Stars”, YOU all have the ability!

For more information contact Cindy Bahl, Business Development Manager, Dirkse Counseling & Consulting, Inc. & Amplify Success Rock Stars Event Coordinator (503)258-7715, info@amplifysuccess.org.

We are here for you; to assist you and your business/organization with your disability diversity initiatives in 2018.  Because we believe:

Disability inclusion matters

It benefits business

It benefits us all.

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Business Owners, Managers, Supervisors and HR Professionals . . .   It’s not too late to register for our first FREE “Brown Bag” Workshop; March 15th, 11-1pm – Profiles & Reasonable Accommodations – Examine how stereotyping and assumptions may impact employment decisions.  Register today!

What is YOUR Ability?

In a recent review of the video footage from the October Amplify Success event taken by our friends at One Click Studio, I was once again inspired by the words of our Keynote Speaker, Dr. Richard Pimentel. Here are a few key points Dr. Pimentel shared that resonated with me then and now on both a personal and professional level.

“There is a space between ABILITY and OPPORTUNITY” – He shared we all have attitudes, beliefs and assumptions that may divide and create a space limiting success. Dr. Pimentel challenged us all to “close the distance between ability and opportunity” by addressing these unconscious biases through education, training and conversation.

“Believe in someone” – Believe in the statement that everyone has the ABILITY to contribute, to participate, to work, to be a part of something.  This is also the message and mission of the Oregon Employment First initiative and the belief of Dirkse Counseling and Consulting, Inc. and many other employment providers who assist people with disabilities in reaching their career goal. Who can YOU believe in today?

“Do YOU have the ABILITY? What is YOUR response to that ability?” – In other words; what can YOU do? What can you do in your business to provide employment opportunities for people with disabilities? What can you do in your community to make a difference? What can you do globally to impact society? The answers are different for each of us but they could all result in making a difference; in one life, in many lives, in our community and beyond.

I hope your response is to take action in some way. At the October Amplify Success event we asked attendees to take a challenge, to make a commitment to learning more about how they could improve disability inclusiveness in the workplace. Disability Diversity Training sessions have been scheduled for the employers who accepted that challenge; they are taking action and following through with their response and their responsibility toward greater diversity in their businesses and organizations.

If you missed the event and the challenge, it’s not too late to take action!  Dirkse CC will be holding three (3) Brown Bag Workshops to help train and equip small employers or individuals using some of the same materials and exercises offered to the initial employers who accepted the challenge.  “Windmills, Changing The Perception of Ability”, created and published by Milt Wright and Associates and taught and referenced by Dr. Pimentel at the October event, will be presented by Dirkse CC Certified Trainers on the following dates.

You are invited to attend one, two or all three sessions!

RSVP Today – Seating is limited!

March 15th, Thursday 11:00am-1:00pm – Profiles & Reasonable Accommodations – Examine how stereotyping and assumptions may impact employment decisions & retention outcomes.  Explore the creative process of identifying reasonable accommodations.

March 29th, Thursday 11:00am-1:00pm – Disability Fact or Fiction & Taking the Emotion Out of Emotional Disabilities – Learn to elevate and value the inclusion of employees with disabilities.  Examine practical applications in the workplace for employees with emotional disabilities.

April 26th, Thursday 11:00am-1:00pm – Pick-A-Disability & The Rumor Game – Interactive exercises valuable to any Employer, HR Professional, Manager or Supervisor to help identify self-awareness of disability bias in the workplace.  Strengthen disability diversity in the workforce with practical applications.

All workshops will be held at the Dirkse CC Training Room in Portland, OR.  An RSVP is required as seating is limited.  For more information contact Business Development Manager and Amplify Success Event Coordinator, Cindy Bahl @ 503-258-7715 or cindy@dirksecc.com

Respond to your ability today; take action in some way to make a difference in disability diversity inclusion.

We are here for you; to assist you and your business/organization with your disability diversity initiatives in 2018.  Because we believe:

Disability inclusion matters

It benefits business

It benefits us all.

Empower Your Workforce
Affirm Abilities
Amplify Success!