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#64, Kristi Herold, Founder and CEO of JAM — Pivoting during a crisis, leading through playfulness, and creating joy in the workplace


Kristi Herold is the CEO of JAM, a global business connecting people through play, and one of the largest recreational sports leagues in the world. Since 2020, JAM has produced 3,500+ corporate team-building events in over 30 countries. Kristi consults and speaks on how to move a culture from surviving to thriving. Her bestselling book, “It Pays to PLAY,” is a rich resource to help organizations playfully connect with their teams and improve retention, engagement, and overall workplace culture.

Here are three takeaways from our talk:

– Pivot with Purpose 

When faced with adversity, like the 18-month revenue hit from the pandemic, Jam Group’s shift to virtual events and culture consulting didn’t just salvage the business. It highlighted how play can create bridges and bolster morale even in the toughest times.

– Create Joy at Work

Kristi’s entrepreneurial wisdom reminds us that injecting playfulness into the workplace—be it through music sessions, sports teams, or creative meetings—can significantly uplift employee engagement and translate into happier customers and improved profitability.

– Lessons in Leadership 

Embracing vulnerability, from owning up to mistakes to combating imposter syndrome, Kristi’s approach underscores the power of radical candor and the significance of building social connections within teams for a stronger and more resilient organization.

Learn more about Kristi | Website

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