Coalfield Council Day – It’s Time for a Breakthrough

Our first Coalfield Council Day of the new year (and new decade!) on January 24 was energetic and exciting! Our executive team and social enterprises gathered at our headquarters at West Edge Factory to set goals for the new year, problem solve, and celebrate how far we’ve come.

Director of Personal and Academic Development Kelli Crabtree helped us kick the day off by welcoming us to the space by reminding us that we’re all unique and have different skills and every one of us brings important things to the Coalfield team. She also came up with a fun icebreaker – share your name and a food that starts with the same first letter of your first name. A little bit of laughter and creativity was a fun way to start the day!

Our CEO Brandon Dennison has dubbed 2020 the year of the “Breakthrough.” He even had an equation for us: D + A = B. What does that mean, exactly? Discipline plus accountability equals a breakthrough. “We’ve persevered through challenges. We’ve refined our business plans. We’ve clarified our goals. Now it’s time to break through the various barriers that hold us back and realize our potential as an organization,” Brandon said.

For our first session of the day, we broke into groups to identify, discuss, and solve problems within each personnel type. Embracing our challenges is a good way to overcome them, and thinking and talking through these issues as a group was a great exercise. Business planning was also a big part of the day. Our teams and social enterprises sat down to discuss goals, progress on projects, review marketing plans, and brainstorm ways to make 2020 an even better year. Keeping an entrepreneurial mindset is important not only for our social enterprises, but for Coalfield as an organization.

We heard from most of our social enterprises about the work they’ve been doing since the last Coalfield Council Day. Refresh Appalachia branches in Wayne and Mingo counties have been hard at work building new high tunnels, plant beds, and germinating crops like micro greens and snow peas. SustainU has been creating t-shirts for high profile bands like The 1975 and The Lumineers in partnership with Reverb, and Saws Edge is building a pretty cool foldable podium for the Mayor’s office. It was inspiring to hear about all of the wonderful things our social enterprises are doing across the region, and we couldn’t be more excited to see the growth they experience in 2020.

To help us make our health and wellness goals a reality in 2020, we heard from John Snodgrass with Benefit Design Services about health insurance, life insurance, and vision and dental benefits. Our COO Ryan Stoner led an interactive workshop on back safety that was beneficial for everyone, helping us learn that lifting and carrying doesn’t have to be a pain in the neck. Elice Hunley with Refresh Appalachia also spoke about the importance of a healthy diet and how to plan your meals to reduce stress as well as save time and money.

Overall, our first Coalfield Council Day of 2020 was an awesome opportunity for us to regroup and remind ourselves just why we do what we do here at Coalfield. Having the room filled with

Hardworking individuals with unique skills and ideas is truly something special. As we celebrate 10 years of Coalfield, we’re also looking forward to what the next decade will bring.

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