By Pam Berrios, Director of Multicultural Training and Development
As this year comes to a close, we are proud to say that our ELEVATE Leadership Training Program has had over 50 graduates. I’m often asked, “what exactly is ELEVATE?” Hopefully, this article will help answer that very question.
ELEVATE was designed to be a transformational experience that equips employees with the exact tools they need to succeed, both professionally and on a personal level. Unlike most training programs currently offered in our industry, this three-day bootcamp is conducted entirely in Spanish. It can be taken by any Spanish-speaking team member looking to take their career to the next level, regardless of their current position. In my past career as an independent consultant, I conducted this training all over the country for hundreds of participants at many of the top 100 landscaping companies, winning several awards for its unique approach. Now, I am excited to offer this program exclusively at Ruppert because the company’s mission, vision and values are in direct alignment with my life’s work of empowering and developing people in our industry.
Through this program, our Spanish-speaking employees become more confident leaders; ones that can empower and train their teams to succeed. But honestly, it is a lot more than that. From the moment employees join the program, the focus is on them, their goals, and the future of their career. During the time they spend in the program, they will figure out what exactly has been holding them back from taking that step forward and create a clear plan of action with smart goals that are not just motivational but completely attainable. They will build upon existing strengths and overcome fears that constrict growth. Another goal is to teach and reinforce the Ruppert culture to recognize the true value of working for an industry-leading company; one that holds employee development and fulfillment as their top priority. ELEVATE helps participants understand that growth is possible here at Ruppert, despite any perceived cultural or language barrier.
Participants share each other’s experiences and trajectories. They learn from one another and form strong bonds; the camaraderie is inevitable. In a very short time, they learn how to hold each other accountable. They brainstorm ideas, work together, and bring out the best in each other. We have seen participants completely come out of their shell in just three days. We take pride in the success stories this program has achieved, one of which is Salvador Magaña (aka Junior) who was recently promoted from Field Manager to Area Manager in our Toughkenamon, PA branch. Junior was able to participate at our last ELEVATE training as a presenter and shared his story in person in front of other participants. We are proud of him and many others who have been able to advance their career or are on the right track to do so soon.
“When I started ELEVATE training, I thought to myself, “Why am I here?” But then I started thinking about my family and how I needed to look forward and be a better leader in our branch. The first day I felt nervous, but soon we got to know each other and the second day we did a presentation and my group did a good job. When the program was done, I thought to myself I’m going to be an area manager. Two to three months later, I got a call that I got the position. So what I’m trying to say is never give up on your dream, work hard for what you want in life and never think you can’t make it only because you are Latino. We have the power in our hands. Plus, it’s a great training course that everybody needs to take!” – Salvador (Junior) Magaña
Those who graduate from the program are not only better prepared to take on any growth opportunities that may arise, but also have a full support system going forward. As we look to 2021, we are evaluating the need for a Level 2 and Level 3, as we are always looking for ways to further develop our people.
My hope is that if you are reading this as a Ruppert manager, you will get excited about sending your people to participate in this program. If you are a team member and would like to participate, ask your manager to sign you up. Dates for 2021 will be released in January. Anyone interested in participating can join the a waiting list now by emailing me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I believe you can only fully elevate yourself by elevating others first. Only an elevated team can elevate a company. I hope to see you soon at our program and meanwhile, stay elevated!