19 Signs of Executive-Level Leadership

By Bill Murray, NCA, CEO

See the full post on LinkedIn or visit the Coffee Career Center resource page for more leadership tips. 

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With thanks to Laura Freebairn-Smith of the Organizational Performance Group, for permission to cite her findings. 

Ensuring that the right organizational leadership is in place is a task that is so challenging that it has spawned an entire industry.

Whether you search the web or pop into an old-school brick-and-mortar bookstore, the amount of advice on offer about “being a leader” is staggering.

One of the reasons that leadership can be a challenging subject is because it pertains to human behavior. A second difficulty relates to things like stylistic differences, gaps between what is said vs. what is done, and self-promotion.

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Coffee Careers: What Are Internships Worth?

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Internships are critical for hands-on experience in a new profession – especially in an industry complex as coffee. Developing new skills and connections gives you a critical advantage in today’s competitive job market.

For employers, interns offer companies fresh perspectives, critical support to boost team productivity, and/or specialized talent to knock out that key project with long-term benefits. It’s also a great way to give back to the industry, cultivating future leaders through education and mentorship. [Ed. note: Check out our new Coffee Career Center for internships tailored specifically for the coffee industry.]

Here, NCA CEO (and association veteran) William (Bill) Murray shares the importance of establishing an ethical internship program, creating a mutually beneficial and rewarding experience.

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Announcing The Coffee Career Center

By Bill Murray, NCA

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There’s never been a more exciting time to have a career in coffee.

From the barista who pulls the perfect shot, to the unheralded scientists working to preserve the genetic diversity of coffee, professionals all around the world have turned their passion for coffee into a livelihood. And yet, until now, there’s never been an easy way to find those career opportunities – or to find talent to match these opportunities.

This is why we are pleased to announce the launch of the first dedicated career center for coffee – anchored by a coffee job board. A venture of the National Coffee Association, U.S.A., the Coffee Career Center is intended to be your first career stop – whether you are hiring, or looking to get hired, in the fascinating and rewarding world of coffee. Continue reading

Today’s International Coffee Organization (ICO): What You Should Know

By Bill Murray, President, NCA
@Bill_CoffeeAssn

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Last week, the International Coffee Organization (or ICO) held one of its semi-annual meetings in London. Delegates gathered from around the world to discuss coffee-related issues, plan the future of the ICO itself, and explore collaboration. The ICO serves as a useful forum for the coffee sector – with input from the NCA – for collaboration.

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What Makes The Coffee Summit Special?

Featuring Bill Murray, President, NCA (@Bill_CoffeeAssn)

[Ed. note: The following is an edited transcript from the above video]

The NCA Coffee Summit is not the usual collection of talking heads. We designed this event specifically so you can get together with your peers, hear from experts, and work on the issues that you’re facing – coming away with concrete tools that you can use.

Here are 5 things that you can take away from attending the NCA Coffee Summit:

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5 Ways to Build a Bold Crew

By Chad Norman, Chief Marketing Officer, Catch Talent

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After reading How to Make Cold Brew Coffee here on the The First Pull, I got to thinking not only about my budding addiction to the delicious nectar (we have cold brew on tap at our coworking space), but also my upcoming session at the NCA Coffee Summit, October 26-28. The blog post inspired me to make cold brew in my home, and when I land in Miami this Fall I hope to inspire others to build a bold crew in the office!

OK, maybe that’s the caffeine talking, but stay with me…

People are at the heart of every business, and the most important asset in the organization. Once you have that killer team, that killer crew, they not only love working with each other, they begin to attract others just like them.

You need a bold, confident, proud team willing to go tell the world about what it’s like to work at your company. After all, once you have a great brew right in your own home, that’s your standard. That’s what you seek out. That’s the ONLY thing that will do.

Attracting talent in today’s world isn’t simply sourcing and recruiting, it’s marketing. And just like in the consumer world, the best marketing centers around stories – in this case, employee stories. If you build a team that truly understands how it feels to work at your company, your pot will always run over with amazing talent.

Here are five ways you can improve your employer brand, attract great talent, and build a bold crew to attract the next batch!

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Overcome All: An Open Letter From Jason Redman

Editor’s note: On March 19 at the NCA 2016 Annual Convention in San Diego, CA, former Navy SEAL Jason Redman shared the story of his journey into Iraq and back – immediately putting any bad day at the office in perspective (hint: if you’re not being shot at, it’s probably not so bad).

Due to the demand for more information on Redman from Convention attendees, we’re posting the following letter that he sent to Bill Murray, NCA CEO, following the event. The letter includes Redman’s five principles of elite performers and six tenants to live by. 

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Related Reading: Gender Diversity in Coffee

Curated by Melissa Pugash and Margaret Swallow

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Photo: IWCA

Join experts Jane Marvin, Senior Vice President, People and Culture at Peet’s Coffee and Tea; and Henriette Kolb, Head Gender Secretariat, International Finance Corporation for an in-depth in the break-out session titled, “The Business Case for Gender Diversity in the Coffee Sector – Actionable Steps Your Business Can Implement Now” at the NCA 2016 Annual Convention in San Diego, on Friday, March 18, 3 p.m. PDT.

Bring your questions and get the answers you need to foster diversity and inclusion in your company’s workforce. You’ll come away with tips for building the right team, with the right talent for your company’s needs, now and in the future.

For those interested in learning more, here is a curated list of resources on a variety of diversity related topics:

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What is Leadership?

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It is ironic that coffee – a beverage with a history of hundreds of years – is in the midst of a period of unprecedented change. That change has unlocked deeper value and choice for business and consumers – even as it presents unprecedented challenges that continually shape the headlines: Climate change. La roya. Sustainability. GMO legislation. Gender inequality. Volatile prices.

All businesses struggle to identify and train leaders. But for the coffee sector, leaders deal with a complex array of variables, threats and opportunities – making leadership essential for the industry’s future.

This is why the theme for the NCA 2016 Annual Convention is “leadership.” It’s an opportunity for leaders, managers, and professionals to join the conversations that are will fundamentally shape the business of coffee going forward – including at a Pre-Convention Symposium designed to help rising professionals turn technical expertise into effective leadership.

But what is leadership? What does it mean in today’s complex, evolving world?

Here, 5 members of the NCA Board of Directors share why leadership matters to the coffee industry:  Continue reading