36ºN member Allison Greco is the founder of Continuous Improvement International, a member-based professional organization that provides training, certification, networking and events. They cultivate a passion for continuous improvement and drive the adoption of continuous improvement culture as the key to organizational success.
How, where and when do you get your best ideas?
Running. I often run through Woodward Park, the Gathering Place and around the historic neighborhoods of mid-town Tulsa. It's about the only way I can truly clear my head.
What's a work tool or ritual that you couldn't live without?
OneNote! After a good run, I need to write down all of those brilliant ideas. We rely heavily on agendas and minutes for all of our meetings so OneNote makes it simple to connect our Outlook meetings, notes and action items.
What skill would you like to master?
Ninja skills. My boys, Colin(3) and Connor(6), would think I'm awesome.
What advice would you give to someone seeking to launch or grow a business?
Listen to your customers. I actively sought out our colleagues and professional peers to ask them for honest, direct feedback. It wasn't all positive. Some of it hurt. Out of the most difficult feedback came one of our absolute best ideas. We listened and we made changes. As we grow and mature, we'll continue to go back to our customers and get their feedback, again and again and again.
What's a big "win" you experienced in the past year?
Finding an incredible conference planner, Tierra, to join our team. We're hosting our first-ever conference, the Epic Failures Conference, in February 2020 in Orlando. Yep, we're going to embrace, and celebrate, those failures and use them to learn and improve. It's going to be epic.
What are you most looking forward to in the year to come?
We're beta-testing our Continuous Improvement Practitioner training and certification this fall. We'll give professionals real tools that get them real results. Our students are going to make a big impact in their workplaces by applying what they learn in our training. They will save their companies a boatload lot of time and money.
Why 36 Degrees North?
Community. If I'm having a rough day, I know that I can always find food and a friendly, albeit sometimes bizarre, conversation in the break room. Feels just like family...
Do you want to give any shoutouts?
Tony, my hubby of 13 years, for believing in me more than I believe in myself. OU's Entrepreneurship Program for giving me the foundational knowledge I needed to get started on my own.