Experience Our Harvest Bounty

Thank you to everyone who joined our Harvest Leader Retreat! We’re delighted to share highlights here. These include Josh Bersin stating that “Waggl has built an action platform unlike one I’ve ever seen.” Bersin also noted the critical value of Employee Voice in developing authentic dialogue: “the most in-demand skills are uniquely human skills: empathy, listening and effective oral communication.”

Throughout Harvest, several speakers demonstrated how this dialogue can advance any key initiative, including speakers from PepsiCo, Heineken, 3M and Freddie Mac.

Bersin, J., “Employee Voice: Engagement Grown Up,” presented at Waggl Harvest, Napa Valley, CA, Sep 17-19, 2019. 

Shaping the Future

Freddie Mac shared how their Employee Voice journey started with gauging the impact and progress of key initiatives and then prioritizing initiative design. Their transformation truly began when applying Employee Voice towards “shaping the future,” and having direct conversations at scale about what is wrong and how to fix it. 

Fearing, D., “The Freddie Mac Story: Inspiring Talent in the Age of Agility,” presented at Waggl Harvest, Napa Valley, CA, Sep 17-19, 2019. 

Focusing on how Employee Voice co-defines their best forward action, our Harvest speakers shared these profound outcomes. 

1. Developing Leaders to Navigate Change

Several speakers addressed leaders’ challenge in shifting from providing all of the answers to embracing their teams’ knowledge. Parsons Corporation shared how Waggl pulse results indicated that “Our managers don’t need to engage their teams with answers to everything. They just need to engage in a conversation. Employee Voice provides managers the context and reasons to have these conversations.”

UCHealth presented Waggl data evidencing that leaders who engage in these 2-way conversations have a more highly engaged team. Conversely, those who don’t, see decreased engagement scores. Furthermore, Bersin credited Waggl’s voting function in building alignment and shared ownership throughout these conversations. He stated: “If you let your employees vote, the CEO can’t ignore the vote, the vote is the vote, and you have to act on the vote.” 

2. Creating and Sustaining a Speak Up Culture

Gilead Sciences, Texas Children’s Hospital, Boeing and VA North Texas explored the psychological safety that individuals need to share their voice. They emphasized how Waggl generates a transparent conversation while also fostering the trust to participate in this conversation. In Thaler Pekar’s storytelling session, we experienced firsthand how sharing our stories generates trust.

Bersin cited a study indicating that “the ability to listen, adapt and behave in a way that is trusted by your people is the most important thing to your employees and their lives.” Given this, he stated “Waggl is not just an engagement and productivity tool, it’s almost an existential tool to running a great organization.”

3. Transforming Culture at Scale

Heineken, PepsiCo and 3M shared powerful stories, while in conversation with create-innovate-operate founder, about the surprising rewards of embracing Employee Voice, such as accelerating their culture of diversity, inclusion and belonging. Denison Consulting shared how a major oil and gas company crowdsourced a plan for combating the climate crisis, while still providing essential energy. By activating their Employee Voice, they simultaneously renewed their employees’ sense of purpose.

Amplified Research & Consulting relayed how Alcoa Corporation’s CEO began tapping employees for firsthand advice on how to increase safety. This included input from frontline workers deep in the heat of aluminum smelting plants. This shift to an overarching Speak Up culture coincided directly with an increase in Alcoa’s stock price.


Advancing Our Collective Journey

Epidemic Leadership’s session on the biological principles of engagement demonstrated how cultivating Employee Voice can transform the culture of people at work as a positive epidemic. Waggl co-founder Michael Papay concluded Harvest by collectively discussing attendees’ Harvest Waggl pulse results. Together we defined immediate actions to continue advancing Employee Voice at our own organizations. As our Heineken speaker stated with a lovely Scottish lilt, “The moral of my story is just do it! Our super hero is Employee Voice…Our people are talking and we would do well to listen.


We’re extremely grateful for the commitment and contribution of every Harvest attendee, and Waggl customer and partner alongside us in amplifying this Employee Voice movement. We can’t wait to see you all at Harvest 2020. To learn more in the meantime, please get in touch!