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Dang Good People: How Omni Changed My Business

Culture Employee Ownership #WeAreOmni

In November of 2015, I talked to a friend I knew in information technology. He’s a talented guy and I wanted his advice on how to automate our Culture Analysis process at Utech Consulting. He scoped out the project and offered to do some of the work himself, but what he really recommended was that we work with Omni Resources. Two weeks later I had two Omni representatives, Tony and Pat, in my office. I don’t know what it is about Pat, but he just exudes trustworthiness. He’s a brilliant guy and I remember loving his ability to think though patterns “in the moment.” The guy has definitely got some skills. He’s also super nice, patient and down-to-earth.

A Day in the Life of a Quality Assurance Analyst

Culture #WeAreOmni

My career in quality assurance started suddenly. I was a stay-at-home mom with a friend who had an opportunity at a large computer company as an SAP tester. I walked in the door my first day, not knowing a thing about test cases, Agile methodology, defects, or anything to do with testing for that matter. I put my nose to the grind and I learned as I went, traveling the country doing QA contracts as an independent contractor. I fell in love with finding defects, and I still love it just as much.

The YNAB Philosophy

Culture Employee Ownership #WeAreOmni

The last time I talked about money, it was to discuss truly owning your money, in other words: budgeting. This time around I’d like to talk about a nifty little app called YNAB. YNAB stands for You Need A Budget. It should really be called You Really, Really Do Need A Budget No Matter How Much You Think You Don’t, but the acronym would have been unwieldy. YNAB is budgeting on steroids. It is both an app and a method to easily take hold of your finances. YNAB is a way to keep an amateur budgeter off spreadsheets…

A Day in the Life of a Software Engineer at Omni

Culture #WeAreOmni

My eyes open and I look at the clock - 6:45. Definitely too early. Close my eyes and next time I open them the clock says 8:15. Eh…close enough. I’ve stopped setting alarms because I work at a small software consulting firm and as long as you don’t miss client meetings and get your work done, no one really cares if you don’t show up at an arbitrary round time. I look outside to see if it’s snowing, raining, both, or one of the other unpredictable weather scenarios that Wisconsin likes to throw in. Hmm looks nice out. Damn. It’s not like I don’t like going into the office, it’s just that it saves me money on gas if I stay home. Okay, honestly with gas at less than $2/gal that’s probably a bad excuse. The more accurate reason is I prefer to not shower and instead work from my bed all day. Usually when I do that though I feel like a hermit neckbeard by about 3:00 pm so I try to not do that too often.

What We're Thankful For at Omni

Culture Employee Ownership #WeAreOmni

With Thanksgiving this week, it led me to ask the team at Omni to share what they are thankful for. I gave them some examples of my own: I am thankful for cheese steak Fridays with the team, spending the holidays with family, awesome blogs that the team contributes, and all the lunches Omni provides. Of course I got this response via Slack from Software Engineer Travis Crowe. To Travis’ credit, he was right on. I love the one-liners and anecdotal responses I often get in return when I prompt the team with a question via Slack or email. I did get a few of those responses with this question, but I also enjoyed seeing the real honest and heartfelt replies and it made me realize how much we really do have to be grateful for. Hopefully these responses will put a smile on your face like they did mine.

The Great Game of Business: Key Takeaways

Culture Employee Ownership #WeAreOmni

This summer the Omni Book Club studied the book The Great Game of Business (GGOB) by Jack Stack and Bo Burlingham. We first heard about this book at the 2016 NCEO Conference in April. Both The Great Game of Business and A Stake in the Outcome were raved about at the conference. It was clear that SRC (the company that started the GGOB) was thought of as the poster child for employee ownership. We were lucky enough to even have Bo Burlingham as one of the keynote speakers. Many other companies were interested in getting behind the paradigm of Open Book Management and the GGOB. With the raving reviews and overwhelming interest, we figured we couldn't go wrong by choosing this book. Here's a breakdown of our top 10 key takeaways:

Talent Upload: Attracting Talent as a Community

Culture Events #WeAreOmni

If you have seen a presentation recently about millennials, you have probably heard something along these lines, “millennials aren’t choosing a career or job first. They are choosing a place to live and then figuring out the career part second.” As a Gen-Xer this can be a hard concept for me to grasp, but after interacting with students that take part in Fox Cities Talent Upload, I know it is a very real fact and one that employers need to take seriously.

Looking Out for Women in Technology

Culture Events #WeAreOmni

This past September I attended the monthly Women in Technology breakfast series. September’s meeting was a panel of three women CIO’s from the Fox Cities area. They answered questions about their backgrounds, provided tips for difficult situations, and discussed ways to get girls interested in technology careers. What I found the most interesting was that these women had a story much like my own. All of them had taken various steps that led to their careers in technology, despite not ever planning on that future.

Omni Takes on Employee Ownership Month

Culture Employee Ownership Community Events #WeAreOmni

For over 20 years, employee-owned companies have been encouraged by the ESOP Association to celebrate this unique trait during the month of October, which has been designated as Employee Ownership Month. Omni has done just that since it went from being privately held by one owner to now being owned by its more than 100 employees.