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Trio of Phoenix businesswomen crowned ATHENA

Eleven women from across the Valley were recognized for achievements spanning leadership, community service and mentoring at the 36th Annual Greater Phoenix Chamber’s ATHENA Awards on Wednesday, Nov. 15.

The internationally prized honor was bestowed upon:

Naquana Borrero, director of development and communications, Jazz in Arizona/The Nash & Owner, Bella Vita Consulting Group (Young Professional Award)

Melody Lewis, owner & founder, Indigenous Community Collaborative (private sector)

Jeri Royce, president & CEO, Advance Community (public sector)

“These influential women are dedicated to building a brighter future and ensuring our community remains strong,” said Todd Sanders, president & CEO of the Greater Phoenix Chamber.

Kudos to all.

– Hannah Van Sickle, The Arizona 100

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On giving thanks

America is a great land of opportunity, one of few in the world where folks have the ability to make their dreams come true.

There’s a foundation here for those who are driven and unafraid of failure – from the actor trying out for a role they’re not fit for to the entrepreneur raising capital for a product launch that’s ultimately unsuccessful.

While I strive to be grateful in my everyday life, the fourth Thursday in November is a welcome opportunity to take pause. It’s a time of reflection, a time to be thankful for all that we have.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Jeff Arnold, Founder, RIGHTSURE

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Sysco breaks ground in Mesa

Last month, Sysco Corporation – the world’s leading foodservice distribution company – celebrated the groundbreaking of Sysco Arizona East, a 353,600-square-foot facility located in Mesa.

The $102 million investment is poised to bring 257 new jobs to the region, along with industry-leading wages (boasting double the per capita median income in Arizona), paid time off and comprehensive healthcare and retirement benefits.

“Our city has a talented workforce … and I appreciate [Sysco’s] commitment to offering job training and workforce development opportunities for Mesa and the East Valley,” said Mayor John Giles.

The under-construction facility is on track to be fully operational by Spring 2025.

– Hannah Van Sickle, The Arizona 100

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Spreading the goodness that is Arizona

In my inaugural column (dated Oct. 1, 2021), I let folks in on a secret: Finding new ways to help others fuels me.

When I began publishing The Arizona 100, I was committed to spreading the goodness of the Grand Canyon State and celebrating the greatness of humanity happening within this place we all call home.

Three years in, my eye is on a new prize: hitting 250,000 subscribers. Is this a lofty goal? Sure. But it comes with perks for you, dear reader. It’s free, it’s fun (no politics or religion here!) and it feels good.

Together, let’s do this!

– Jeff Arnold, Founder, RIGHTSURE

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Creating opportunities to build (and celebrate) confidence

Recently, my daughter’s attention has been harnessed by all things equestrian – a notoriously time consuming (not to mention expensive!) pastime. She rides three days each week, mucks stalls on Sundays and thinks about swapping her deep-seated barrel-racing western saddle for one of the English variety so she can explore dressage.

Each and every time she learns a new trick on her horse, my daughter is buoyed by confidence.

What a gift it has been to help grow this young female’s self-image. I hope she goes forth in the world cognizant of her power and potential – both of which are limitless.

Jeff Arnold, Founder, RIGHTSURE

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When business booms out-of-state

Expanding your business across state lines is a huge milestone; keep the following in mind while navigating the process:

Cost of commercial property – Whether renting or buying, consider virtual tours, and don’t forget property insurance.

Quality of hiring pool – Whether onboarding full-time employees or freelance contractors, do your homework regarding local requirements.

Special laws and regulations to learn – Set the paperwork in motion, stat, to avoid state agency backlog.

Adequacy of business insurance – Coverage is contingent upon location, so prioritize your protection, from general liability and business umbrella insurance to commercial auto coverage and workers’ compensation.

Read on for more.

– Hannah Van Sickle, The Arizona 100

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Learning happens across the generations, too

I have always believed when the heart is ready, the teacher will come in – a mindset applicable to many arenas, from business and mentoring to sports.

After winning the women’s U.S. Open in early September, 19-year-old Coco Gauff told ESPN, “Different generations have pushed me to do well in this one.”

The brief, albeit impactful, comment was a nod to her father and primary coach Corey (52) – aka “Captain” – and his decision to step back and hire Pere Riba (35) and Brad Gilbert (62) to fine-tune the prodigy’s game.

Gauff’s heart was clearly ready to learn from another generation; is yours?

– Jeff Arnold, Founder, RIGHTSURE

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Customers love businesses who love them

In today’s hyper-competitive business world, having a quality product or service is only part of the equation for success. With competitors just a click away, customers are attracted to, and stick with, businesses who demonstrate an ongoing commitment to caring for their customers’ unique needs.

Through innovations in artificial intelligence and marketing automation, businesses can now effortlessly create and maintain ongoing, personalized care relationships with customers in ways that were not even possible to imagine previously. This paves the way for a better, more engaging experience for customers.

Curious to learn more about these innovative possibilities? Click here to begin.

– Staff report, The Arizona 100

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Imperfections need not mean the death of effective leadership

I often joke that “Lost in Translation” is gonna be on my tombstone – a fitting epitaph, I’ve decided, for someone equally fueled by imagination and innovation.

As a highly creative human, I often find myself bursting with a million ideas – All. At. Once.

From time to time, things CAN get lost in translation amidst the enthusiasm (something my wife and daughter remind me of, often), which presents fertile ground for self-reflection.

Embracing all of my qualities ultimately allows me to see myself more clearly and also allows for continual growth and evolution – a true win-win.

What would your epitaph be?

– Jeff Arnold, Founder, RIGHTSURE

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Creating ties that bind

Today’s workforce includes individuals from a whopping five different generations, which means folks at the helm of these diverse teams – spanning Baby Boomers to Generation Alpha – will inevitably encounter a range of abilities, beliefs, work habits and communication styles.

In the (refreshing) absence of a one-size-fits-all approach, I’ve got some ideas about understanding and engaging each cohort – one of many topics I explore in my recent book, “Leading Across the Generations.”

If I’ve learned anything over the past three decades, it’s that leveraging the strengths and perspectives of each generation is the key to creating more innovative and dynamic teams.

– Jeff Arnold, Founder, RIGHTSURE