February 11, 2019
On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Rob Everts, Co-Executive Director of Equal Exchange, a worker-owned cooperative and online marketplace for fair trade goods.
Equal Exchange is the oldest and largest fair-trade coffee company in the U.S. and one of the most successful worker-owned cooperatives in the country. Driven by its core principle of people over profit, the co-op has over 120 worker-owners, each with an equal stake — and an equal vote — in the business. From open-book management to an energizing core purpose, Equal Exchange has established itself as one of the most inspiring examples of a Small Giant in the business world today.
In this episode, hear how Rob first fell into activism as a high schooler and the path that led him to join forces with Equal Exchange. Plus, Rob explains in simple terms how worker cooperatives function and the ins and outs of employee ownership under this model.
January 14, 2019
On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Anisa Telwar Kaicker, CEO and Founder of Anisa International, a global leader in cosmetic brush design and manufacturing.
Anisa started her company in 1992 at a time when men held most leadership positions in the cosmetics industry. In fact, Anisa International is the only female-owned brush manufacturer in the world. For fifteen years, Anisa worked hard to prove herself and hold her own in a male-dominated industry — and that meant taking a tough approach to leadership. But as the company took off, Anisa realized that she had built something worth growing, and she couldn't do it alone.
In this episode, hear how Anisa learned to become a more authentic, purpose-driven leader after years of traditional leadership. Plus, take a look inside Anisa International's award-winning culture and how she's transforming the brush manufacturing industry.
December 10, 2018
What do core values, employee ownership, and craft beer have in common?
Today on the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Dan Kenary, CEO and Co-Founder of Harpoon Brewery, a Boston-based craft brewery. Harpoon Brewery was founded in 1986 on a strong foundation of values and mission. Today, Harpoon Brewery is a shining example of a Small Giant — the company has nearly $60 million in revenue and is employee-owned through an ESOP (employee stock ownership program). For Dan, it all comes down to embracing a principles-first approach that puts people at the center of the business. As Harpoon Brewery sets its sights on achieving a second ESOP transaction, learn the strategies and systems that help keep the business on track and empower employees to feel and act like owners.
In this episode, hear how Harpoon Brewery brings its company motto "Love Beer. Love Life" to life through mission-driven ownership and strategic commitment to core values.
November 28, 2018
Since she was a child, Elizabeth Colón has been the voice of the voiceless.
Today on the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Elizabeth Colón, President & CEO of Metaphrasis, a comprehensive interpreting and translation company. Elizabeth grew up in a Spanish-speaking home with five siblings, two of whom had hearing issues. From an early age, Elizabeth was tasked with adult responsibilities, like translating medical information for her parents and speaking up for her siblings. Today, Elizabeth has transformed her early challenges into a business dedicated to providing high-quality translation services that incorporate the culture and context necessary to provide meaningful communication across languages.
In this episode, hear how Elizabeth inspires those without hope to shift their mindset and make a change — and how other leaders can, too.
November 14, 2018
Megan Driscoll believes that all people are equal and worthy — and she has the business practices to back it up.
Today on the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Megan Driscoll, CEO and Founder of PharmaLogics Recruiting, a Boston-based global recruiting firm exclusively focused in life sciences. Megan's career as an entrepreneur is defined by hard work, innovation, and bold decisions that showcase her strong values. Megan is a staunch supporter of female leadership in business and an advocate for wage transparency and equality. Her mission-driven firm is a prime example of the power of business to do good in the personal and professional lives of employees.
In this episode, hear how Megan has learned to lead with her heart, not her head — and how she recently realized that meant it's time to exit her company.
October 24, 2018
There's no way to fake authenticity. If you really love your business and care about it, people will naturally gravitate to you. After over a decade of building his t-shirt company, Michael Draper knows firsthand that it takes hard work every day to build a truly great business.
Today on the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Michael Draper, Founder and Owner of RAYGUN, a clothing store headquartered in downtown Des Moines, Iowa. What started as Michael selling t-shirts on the streets of his college campus has grown into a $4 million business with 70 employees and four locations. For over a decade, Michael's authentic passion for what RAYGUN is all about has kept the business afloat, even in the face of financial crises and industry changes.
In this episode, hear how Michael built a thriving clothing business with a history degree, no money, and no experience.
October 10, 2018
Tracy Dahlin is a self-described "bull in a china shop" and a rumored "occasional pain in the ass." She's also a passionate, purpose-driven business leader.
Today on the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Tracy Dahlin, Owner and President of Iron River Construction, a women-owned, full-service Minneapolis contractor and remodeler. Although Tracy is a licensed contractor, insurance inspector and roof inspector, she frequently deals with looks of disbelief when a woman shows up on the construction site. Still, Tracy leveraged her confident leadership and competence in the industry to build a successful, fast-growing company built on transparency, autonomy and collaboration.
In this episode, hear how Tracy continues to check her own leadership and her vision for the future of the construction industry.
September 12, 2018
It doesn't happen often, but it happened to Lester Thornhill: his CEO took him out to dinner and asked Lester to leave his role as IT Director and take over as Chief Executive Officer.
Today on the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Lester Thornhill, President and CEO of Life's Abundance, a company that provides healthy products for people, pets, and the planet. Although he comes from an IT background, Lester has leveraged his unique perspective to build a people-driven culture that isn't tethered to traditional workplace practices. Not only is Life's Abundance an ESOP, they've also done away with the annual review and replaced it with monthly in-depth, personal self-evaluations.
In this episode, hear Lester's passionate approach to leadership and learn how he's cultivated a compassionate, high-performing company culture.
August 6, 2018
UncommonGoods is an award-winning company, most recently winning the 2018 Forbes Small Giants award. But UncommonGoods doesn't do it for the awards — their culture is driven by their core values and using business as a force for good, even when no one is watching.
Today on the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with David Bolotsky, Founder and CEO of UncommonGoods, an online marketplace for designs and products by independent makers. David leads the company with a focus on long-term sustainability for the company, its employees, and the environment. A certified B Corp, UncommonGoods is leading the charge in companies who use business as a force for good.
In this episode, hear David's trials and tribulations as he learned to use positive leadership to cultivate a culture defined by learning, open-mindedness, and collaborative teamwork.
July 24, 2018
Can a high-ranking corporate leader make the switch to purpose-driven leadership? Michael Spinosa, CEO of Unleashed Technologies, hit the reset button on his career to pursue building his own business as a way to escape his unfulfilling career in the corporate world.
Today on the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Michael Spinosa, CEO of Unleashed Technologies, an award-winning design and development firm in Columbia, Maryland. Though Michael started out in the corporate world and found great success, he felt a pull to build a business with purpose. As he attempted to transition out of his career, he found himself running into major national crises, like the dot-com bubble burst after college and the housing crisis in 2007. How does a leader pave his own path amidst national unrest — and what does it take to reinvent yourself as a leader mid-career?
In this episode, hear how Michael built a culture of trust, fun, and accountability at Unleashed Technologies, and the greatest challenges he's faced on his journey to purpose-driven leadership.