Our Co-CEO’s (Meghan Messenger and Charlie Kim) have created a monthly newsletter that we share with our staff and family, but also friends of the company (including past Leadership Academy attendees). It includes a sampling of many things happening, summing up as part of our larger mission in changing workplace culture.
NxJumpers + Family & Friends,
So much has crossed our desk in the month of November and here is our attempt to share some of the key highlights with our family & friends.
November started off with a funny story. An invite only conference held by Lazard, brings the who’s who of CEOs together in NYC. We had the opportunity to attend and listen to the Head of IBM Watson, Amazon’s head of Alexa and many others talk of where technology, the future of business is going. As I saved a seat for Meghan who was rushing over from her parent-teacher conference, Robert Kraft (as in the owner of the New England Patriots), asks if he could sit in the seat I was saving. I said no. He asked again if he could sit. I said no again, that I’m saving this seat. He then asked for a third time if he could sit and take this seat, I then had to tell him, it is for a very important person – sorry. Several men jumped out of their seats to say “Mr Kraft, please take my seat”. Meghan arrived shortly after – I can’t imagine what he was thinking – who is this person? I should note, I am a Patriots fan, so it was not a sports driven decision but a decision to save the seat for our Co-CEO.
We started Next Jump in 1994. We are nearing 23 years in business and the most difficult question we have struggled to answer is: “What do you do?” We’ve worked to simplify all the things we are doing and this diagram has helped us best explain the 2 sides of What We Do:
Non-Profits run two businesses. Doing good and raising money.
Next Jump also runs two businesses. We make money through an ecommerce marketplace, integrated into almost every F1000 company (total of 4000 large companies and over 100,000 small businesses). However half our money and resources goes towards our social movement – of changing workplace culture as we believe you cannot fix the world without changing how we work.
November included Black Friday and Cyber Monday – the two biggest shopping days. Gilt Groupe in its hayday would talk about the spending power of its user base, 100,000 customers would spend $10MM in a week. The week of Black Friday, 95,000 Next Jump customers spent $51MM. The week of Cyber Monday, 93,000 customers spent $64MM. The spending power of people with jobs, in big companies…that’s the market we built our revenue on.
Conscious Company Magazine (Cover) :
Meghan and I were featured on the cover of the magazine Conscious Company. It’s main distribution is through every Wholefoods nationwide as well as major bookstores from mid November to mid January. Countless friends, family members and acquaintances reached out after seeing and reading the feature article.
One Saturday morning in November, we both received an email containing a voice note, from an amazing friend who also happens to be one of the most connected and accomplished individuals, including advising several presidents over the years. It’s such a soulful heartfelt message, we wanted to share with our friends and family. Click on the link below to listen to it.
A Voice Note to Charlie & Meghan from Alan Fleischmann [10 min]
HARVARD’s NEW DEAN of the ED SCHOOL partnering with Next Jump:
Matt Miller, one of the co-authors of “An Everyone Culture” where Next Jump was featured as 1 of 3 companies turning work into the next institution of learning…just got promoted to be the new dean of the Harvard Ed School. Interestingly, the innovation of company culture is coming out of the Education Schools instead of Business Schools. The primary strategy and investment of WORK is quickly becoming the development of its people – its number one asset. Matt will be leading 300-500 provosts, heads of schools, in the summer, as they come to Harvard to learn about innovation in education.
Matt would like to write a case study of how teaching is baked into Next Jump’s culture to use with his students in their curriculum. One of the most untapped aspects of learning is peer-peer learning. Was saying that research is showing signals that methods like Case Studies (used in biz school but very little elsewhere) work well because peer interaction is so key for learning.
He suggested that we have done so much on creating a circle of safety that we might want to consider helping companies think through how to get started on that more deliberately.
- Was saying a person feeling a commitment to them as a person is crucial for development. All evidence shows that. he loves our family analogy. No one roots for you more to succeed in the long run than your parents. Was saying that if you borrowed the car from your parents and crashed their car, while they likely would ground you, their first instinct would be are you ok. Matt was saying we’ve built that at Next Jump. That allows people to be vulnerable, take risks (all that Amy Edmonson says).
He also wanted to introduce us to the senior partner at McKinsey who is in charge of their learning/development who thinks would love us. He ended our discussion by saying that he has told other education institutions that the greatest innovation in education is coming in private companies and he means NxJ…
NxJ LEADERSHIP ACADEMY
We ran our 1st simultaneous Leadership Academy in both Boston and NYC. NYC had 25 officers from every service of the DoD: Marines, Navy, Air Force, Army, National Guard and members who worked directly w/ the Sec of Defense. Boston had over a dozen members of the Michael Monsoor, the $4B Navy ship which has adopted NxJ’s culture, programs and technology in building a great culture of organic leadership.
OBSERVATION SEATS: we had over a dozen VIP Guests observing the 3 day training of military officers from many different organizations including executives and heads of talent from JPMC, Goldman Sachs, Fidelity, Liberty Mutual, Boston Medical Center.
We have received an overwhelming number of thank you notes post Academy, nearly 2 dozen, two representative examples:
“What an incredible past three days – wow! The insights, knowledge, vulnerability (truth), grit, and generosity you and your employees shared were so powerful. You have made a difference for me personally, as well as others, and I am confident DoD as a whole in time. It was truly an honor to observe, engage, and grow with Next Jump.”
“Again thank you so much for your investment in our military. I am not sure if you will ever know just how big an impact your investment will make.”
Several of the military leadership academies are now in the process of baking several of Next Jump’s programs, in particular around coaching and mentoring techniques into their class curriculum. We are excited for a growing partnership between the DoD and Next Jump.
OS For Culture: Technology to Enable High Performance Cultures:
Our team has released in both the Apple IOS and Google Android stores, 5 mobile apps to help run company culture.
REACTIONS from the DoD during the app DEMO:
- Sitting back here with some of the more senior DoD guys here…overhearing:
- We want this now
- WOW, this is so easy
- GOD I love this. Love this company, they just create stuff.
- I’m having to quiet them down right now as they discuss in excited whispers, to hear the presentation
Implementation and adoption discussions are accelerating at a pace beyond any of our imaginations with organizations including Navy, Army, JPMC, Fidelity, Liberty Mutual and many more.
An Exchange of Leadership Insights from the DoD
Our giving to the DoD has resulted in an outpouring of learnings back to us.
Loved this photo…describes the difference between an OWNER vs a RENTER:
The insight of Leadership into two categories: MANDATE vs ORGANIC..has helped us frame many of our leadership programs and training:
As we translated the valuable insights and knowledge into practice within Next Jump’s leadership training programs, we shared a working document back to the military:
To which they quickly responded:
“Thanks, great stuff. I am going to take some time to digest and fire back some questions. I like the breakdown of when organic vs. mandate. We talk about that a lot, but often say that problems occur because we fall back on mandate leadership because it is easier. But looking at your thoughts below, maybe problems occur because we use the wrong leadership for a given situation. Thanks again, follow up to come.”
This gives you a flavor of the rapid exchange of knowledge and the enhancement of leadership training between our organizations…
Kyle – Our 11 Month Navy Fellow
Next Jump was 1 of 30 companies selected in the Navy’s inaugural fellowship program where they selected top officers to work for 11 months paid by the Navy in high performance companies including Google, Apple, Amazon, etc. Kyle is our Fellow from the Navy, who is required to create a report throughout his fellowship of his key learnings and takeaways, with the goal of creating change within the Navy.
It’s always fascinating to hear someone from the outside describe Next Jump. We cut and pasted sections of his report:
- Personal Observations: Next Jump has adopted a Physical, Emotional, Mentally, and Spiritual approach for what makes a happy, healthy, and productive employee. Where Next Jump excels is in practice, barriers to working out and healthy habits are removed.
- Next jump has developed a culture of directed and anonymous constructive feedback. Learning to give and receive feedback is a continual process for every employee. This leads to better decision making and shorter error chains.
- There is also value in exploring the idea of learning decision-making processes from seasoned leaders. As a whole, the Navy already accomplishes this, but I believe a force multiplier can be achieved by fostering a “Next Jump-like” emphasis on deliberate constructive feedback and mentorship on daily basis, at all levels.
Adopt-A-School: Both After School Programs Kick Off
PS119 in the Bronx and Netley Primary School in the UK, both kicked off their after school programs with NxJumpers. The pictures below are UK NxJumpers teaching at Netley. The greatest demand and interest continues to come from our coding/engineering/robotics tracks. Being a company predominantly of engineers, hiring the best arguably in the world…this is one of the greatest value adds from NxJ.
“As usual, the children were at their most enthusiastic when talking about what they had been making at code club, having been inspired by our engineering track. Many of the kids have indicated that they want to be coders when they get older.”
Our goal is to produce this monthly CEO update, to be shared with your family & friends. As close in on the end of 2016, we can feel an energy and excitement to make real impact and do work that really matters. Many things are coming together for 2017.
Happy Holidays and our next update will be in January 2017.
CK & MM