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130: NCEO's Holiday Gift Guide

Bret Keisling talks about NCEO’s new 2020 Holiday Gift Guide featuring really cool products and services from amazing employee owned companies.


Episode 130 Transcript

Bitsy McCann: 00:04 Welcome to The EO Podcast, where we amplify and celebrate all forms of employee ownership.

Bret Keisling: 00:12 Hello, my friends. Thanks for listening. My name is Bret Keisling and as it says on my business cards, I'm a passionate advocate for employee ownership. As we release this episode on Tuesday, December 15th, I want to wish a happy Hanukkah to my fellow members of the tribe and an early Merry Christmas and Happy Kwanzaa to those who observe, and a generic Season's Greetings to everyone else. We're going to keep this episode relatively short, especially for a Tuesday. There's an awful lot going on in the country right now and a lot of it's troubling. And to be very honest with you, although there are any number of technical or policy issues relating to the pandemic that I could talk about, I just want a little break from the troubling stuff. So I'm going to focus on the holidays!

Bret Keisling: 01:03 There is a really cool holiday gift guide that NCEO, the National Center for Employee Ownership, has put together featuring products and services from employee owned companies in this case, mostly ESOPs.

Bret Keisling: 01:19 I love the fact that employee owners and advocates and everyone who wants to support employee ownership are beginning to have easy options to do so. We've recently talked about Certified EO's "Buy EO" program. And now there are two!

Bret Keisling: 01:34 We're going to include a link to NCEO's holiday gift guide in our show notes. It's not a big catalog at the moment, it's about 10 pages long, but I can't help think as I look at the guide that in a few years, as it expands and grows, this first issue will be seen as an entry point for greater things to come. There are a variety of products available, and I especially love the fact that I wasn't familiar with many of the companies that are featured.

Bret Keisling: 02:00 So for example, Harpoon Brewery, Gardener's Supply, and King Arthur Baking Company are all included. That's not a surprise as those three companies are always involved on cool employee ownership programs. But there are a number of other companies that I wasn't familiar with, and it's always a pleasure to come across great employee owned companies, doing cool things.

Bret Keisling: 02:24 For example, Country Willow, Karl's , and Big Sandy Home Furnishings are in the catalog. I wasn't familiar with them. New Harbinger, which is a book publishing company, is included as are Mystic Stamp Company and Littleton Coin Company, as well as a number of other great companies.

Bret Keisling: 02:45 The guide includes gifts for the kitchen, such as coffee, a pastry gift crate, and soup mix. There are boots and clothing and furniture and even appliances. There are great things for children and families including crafts, a free stamp collectors catalog, a coin advent calendar.

Bret Keisling: 03:04 They haven't forgotten our furry friends either. There are dog treats and jerky for cats and even a pet life vest. I know it's a safety item, but the picture of the dog and the life vest is so darn adorable. You can even sign up for a free live demo of a paint and acrylic class. Did I mention there's a pastry gift crate?

Bret Keisling: 03:26 There's also clothing and gift cards, as well as membership information about NCEO itself.

Bret Keisling: 03:32 I want to thank NCEO and all of the participating companies. I also want to really encourage you to check out the gift guide and see if you can't make a purchase or two for yourself or others. You'll be supporting employee owned companies as well as this great initiative by the NCEO and that's going to be good for all of us.

Bret Keisling: 03:52 And if you don't have anyone on your gift list and you're looking to support one of these companies, did I mention that there's a pastry gift crate and that I'm available to be added to people's gift lists if you're so inclined?

Bret Keisling: 04:10 Truly, I hope you will check out the NCEO Holiday Gift Guide and circle back to Certified EO's "Buy EO" program. And I do want to close by saying this, obviously we all understand we're going through unprecedented times. If you're struggling this holiday season, please know it will get better. And if you are fortunate and affected by the pandemic, but not really struggling, see if you can't find a way to help those around you who are in a tougher situation. We are going through this pandemic together and we're going to get through it, in the best spirit of employee ownership, together.

Bret Keisling: 04:51 With that, I will wrap up. Please check out for all of our archives. We're at about 250 combined episodes now. You can also get them wherever you get your podcasts. And if you do want to support our work, we do appreciate the likes and follows and subscribing where you get your podcasts. It does encourage us.

Bret Keisling: 05:13 Thank you so much for joining me today. This is Bret Keisling be well.

Bitsy McCann: 05:21 We'd love to hear from you! To contact us, find us on Facebook at KEISOP, LLC and on Twitter @ESOPPodcast. To reach Bret, with one "T", email, on LinkedIn at Bret Keisling, and most actively on Twitter at @EO_Bret. Again, that's one "T". This podcast has been produced by The KEISOP Group, technical assistance provided by Third Circle, Inc. and BitsyPlus Design. Original music composed by Max Keisling, archival podcast material edited and produced by Brian Keisling, and I'm Bitsy McCann.

Standard Disclaimer: The views expressed herein are my own and don't represent those of my own firms or the organizations to which I belong. Nothing in the podcast should be construed as guidance or advice of any kind in any field and the fact that I mentioned an organizational website or an advocate or a company on a podcast does not reflect an endorsement, but if you've heard your name or your group's name mentioned on this podcast, I'd love to have you come on and talk about it yourself.

A note on the transcript: This transcript was produced by Temi, an automated transcription service. While it has been reviewed by The ESOP Podcast, we can not guarantee the accuracy of the transcription. Please refer to the original audio when citing sources.


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