Employer Resource Network Hires Its First Success Coach

By Aspire Economic Development + Chamber Alliance | | 5.28.21

Aspire Economic Development + Chamber Alliance

Local employers now have a powerful ally to help with employee retention: the Johnson County Employer Resource Network. The program has announced that it has hired a personal success coach to work with employees. Aspire is part of the Community Core Team tasked with launching and leading the ERN program along with the Johnson County Community Foundation, United Way of Johnson County, Ivy Tech Community College and Express Employment Professionals.

The new success coach, Greg Pryor, earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from IUPUI, a master’s degree in educational psychology from Ball State University and professional coach training through the Coach U educational program. He leverages leadership experience from the education and workforce development fields where he worked from 2011 to 2021. Pryor said he feels his purpose is to support individuals on their personal and professional development journey.

Aspire President and CEO Christian Maslowski discussed the reason for the program: “We’ve heard time and again from employers who say if they could improve employee retention, they would have less need to recruit new people. And we also hear from employers that more than 30% of their human resource manager’s time is spent on supporting employees’ personal needs and challenges, some of which contribute to turnover. This program puts a person – a coach – at the nexus of employee retention and employee support.”

The program’s launch earlier this year was thanks to the leadership of the Johnson County Community Foundation and funded by a grant from the Lilly Endowment to the foundation, which will administer the program for its first year or two and will employ the success coach. After the program establishes a firm footing, it will transition out of the foundation to become housed with one of the other Community Core Team member organizations. The foundation is a nonprofit public charity established in 1991 to serve donors, award grants and provide leadership to improve Johnson County.

This workplace-based employee success coaching results in real-time connections to community resources, allowing these employees to overcome the weighty problems outside of work that affect their productivity in the workplace.

Companies that participate in a local ERN see an employee utilization rate of 16.3% compared to an employee utilization rate of 1% for a typical employee assistance program, added Aspire Vice President of Economic Development Amanda Rubadue. “Even better, employees who utilize the success coach have a retention rate of 95-98%. ERN’s workforce return on investment has been clearly demonstrated in other communities.”

Common types of resources that employees ask a success coach for help with are transportation, mental health, personal finance, childcare, housing and workplace goal-setting. The coach will be available onsite or virtually, depending upon each company’s health and safety policies. The services are free to the employee because the employer has invested in a share of the success coach’s time each week.

The Johnson County ERN has five member companies – Endress+Hauser, GMI Corp., Greenwood Village South, Ulta Beauty and Underground Safety Alliance – with the potential to add a few more within the next couple of months.

“We are excited to welcome Greg to the Johnson County ERN and eager to help ease local employers’ employee-retention burden,” said Rubadue. “Employees’ discussions with the success coach will remain confidential and private unless someone is in harm’s way. The coach will track and report the types of requests and needs in aggregate to help the employer and other community leaders such as Aspire understand where to focus social and human service capacity.”

ERN is a national program supporting 28 area networks in nine states. Johnson County is the only ERN in Indiana.

Companies interested in hosting Success Coach Pryor at their business should contact Stephanie Wagner, community development liaison at Johnson County Community Foundation, at StephanieW@JCCF.org or 317.738.2213.