Why you can’t miss the 3RD Annual CO+HOOTS Lip Sync Battle! Q&A with Jenny Poon, CO+HOOTS Foundation Co-Chair

Each year, CO+HOOTS Foundation brings together the #yesphx business community for a spectacular event filled with memorable performances. On September 8, beginning at 6:30 pm, we will kick off the night by watching the most creative and innovative companies in Phoenix compete to become Lip Sync Champion!

This battle of the bold is bound to be entertaining. Each team competes for best performance and also for most funds raised! All proceeds will go toward supporting young entrepreneurs through the CO+HOOTS Foundation. Join us for an unforgettable night with outstanding performers who are dying to share their mad skills and take home the glory!

CO+HOOTS Foundation Board Co-Chair Jenny Poon tells us more about what this event means to her.

Amanda: This is the 3rd Annual Lip Sync Battle, I’d love to hear more about how this tradition got started?!

Jenny: Well, it all started with the voices in my head. … Kidddddiiinnnnggggg! … Three years ago, we wanted to do something to celebrate Phoenix Councilmember Daniel Valenzuela’s birthday. He had been such a great resource for us as well as other individuals, organizations and companies in the Phoenix entrepreneurial and startup community. Here was a politician who didn’t act like one and really saw the value in our community in helping Phoenix grow. We really wanted to do something different, something no one else has done. Odeen (my husband) and I always enjoyed the Lip Sync Battles on Jim Fallon’s show. So it was a no brainer for us to gather other people in our community to battle it out via wacky lip sync performances to celebrate Daniel.

A: The winning team was Great Hearts Academy last year, what team do you think will take home the Championship THIS year?

Jenny: Well, CO+HOOTS can never win the competition, even though we always have the best performance. OK, that’s enough for my comedic career. I’m putting my (fake) money on Right This Minute/FOX team of Heather Lynn Herr and Jeff Moriarty. Heather can dance circles around you and Jeff is a genius. No pressure guys!

Amanda: What is your favorite thing about the Annual Lip Sync Battle?

Jenny: Getting all of these professionals together in one room to just let loose and have fun. We are all so go-go-go during the week (and many weekends) that it’s hard to schedule a time to just enjoy the company of like-minded people without our work life getting in the way. And because this is a lip syncing-dancing event, you get people out of their comfort zone … or you learn people’s hidden talents!

Amanda: What makes this year unique to the years prior? 

Jenny: We are tripling down on making this Lip Sync Battle our primary event every year for the CO+HOOTS Foundation. To help raise funds to support the Foundation, its mission to provide equitable opportunity to entrepreneurship and our youth entrepreneurship program. All proceeds from the event will go toward benefitting that program.

Amanda: So all proceeds from the event will go to young entrepreneurs? Very cool! Are there any surprises in store for those attending?

Jenny: Well, we might get several members of Phoenix City Council to get on stage if we hit our fundraising goals, including Mayor Greg Stanton! It’s going to be bonkers!

Amanda: Is this event public? How can people sign up for this?

Jenny: They can sign up online through our events page and yes — everyone can join the fun!

Amanda: Where is it located?

Jenny: It will be held at the FOUND:RE Hotel, 1100 N Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85003 on September 8, 2017, from 6:30- 9:30 pm!

Amanda: Can you tell us who the line up will be?

Jenny: SBDC, SEED SPOT, Theraspecs, CO+HOOTS, Great Hearts Academy, Devin Del Palacio, CEI, ImproveAZ, Right This Minute, Downtown Phoenix Inc, and more!

Amanda: How can people get involved more CO+HOOTS Foundation?

Jenny: First, they can get tickets to the Lip Sync Battle at bit.ly/colipsync as there will be plenty of opportunities to learn about the Foundation and our youth entrepreneurship program. They can also visit our website cohootsfdn.com where there will be ways to contact us for any opportunities to get involved.


Take a peek at last years Lip sync battle!

Why I support the CO+HOOTS Foundation

When I volunteered for Youth StartUp Weekend at the CO+HOOTS Foundation, I had a glimpse into our children’s future. I witnessed each student pitching their ideas, creating products, and learning how to become a business owner!  Each going through their own transformation and realizing how confident they could be. This kind of thing is exactly why I admire and respect Jenny and Odeen at the CO+HOOTS Foundation. They think about the best ways to build community, communication, and a safe place to be yourself. Which is why I’d love for you to get to know them, and the community, at the 3rd Annual Lip Sync Battle. Don’t FOMO! We will be having a blast with talented people for a great cause.

The CO+HOOTS Foundation is an Arizona non-profit 501(c)(3) whose mission is to influence and support community growth by engaging the power of co-workers, independent contractors, and small business. We provide pro bono service, education and leadership to CO+WORK, CO+BUILD and CO+CHANGE the world.


Looking forward to seeing you there!

Original post on CO+HOOTS website can be found here.

Strengths Finder For Emerging Leaders | Coaching Corner

We all have areas we want to improve professionally, don’t we? While SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) is an effective method for improving performance for an organization overall, I have been looking for an alternative way to introspect. For someone looking to become a stronger leader and to understand how I can best contribute positively to those around me, I was happy when I came across something a little different.

Discovering Strengths Finder


I recently read Strengths Based Leadership from Gallup’s Tom Rath and took the StrengthsFinder assessment to gain some insight into my own. The test itself was quick and almost too good at recognizing areas I excel in. In fact, my top strength came through as ‘Ideation,’ which, I love ideas.

I love brainstorming and seeking out discussion groups in my life. Trying to solve a problem by coming up with ideas is one of my favorite parts of a new project.

The saying goes that we can all be our own worst critics. The positive perspective of Strengths Based Leadership is a refreshing and encouraging one.

The opportunity to learn more about Strengths Finder came my way through the Emerging Leaders of Phoenix Children’s Hospital.  has been a focus during their Early Risers breakfast events this year.

Through this group, I was able to hear from a Strengths Finder advocate, Guido de Koning, SVP Human Capital at Aspect Software. The event was well executed and those who attended were able to hear more about Guido’s professional background, his passion for culture, and also how Strengths Finder can help define teams as well as leaders.

Key Take-Aways:

1. Find your top 5 strengths, find each team member’s top strengths, and delegate tasks accordingly for optimal collaboration.

2. If you are in the market for a career change, Strengths Finder can help you take an honest look at yourself and maximize your potential.

3. Having leadership that understands and encourages exploration into tests or books like Strengths Based Leadership is a good sign!

For anyone curious, here were MY top strengths:

  1. Ideation – Strategic Thinking
  2. Input – Strategic Thinking
  3. Intellection – Strategic Thinking
  4. Restorative – Executing
  5. Activator – Influencing Category

Most of my strengths fall under the category of strategic thinking. This sounds perfect to me! I enjoy looking at the big picture, coming up with new ideas, finding ways to solve problems, and being the catalyst for change. Taking this test helped me understand how I can get the most out of my own strengths. It also helped me learn where to ask for help and what kinds of people I should collaborate with.

I would encourage ANYONE who…

  1. Wants some additional insight into their personality
  2. Is a leader organizing a new team or has a team that is experiencing bottlenecks
  3. Is a job seeker wanting to find the right words and ways to exemplify their best self

…to give Strengths Finder a try.


What areas do you feel you excel in? Are there other assessments you’ve taken that you feel have helped you excel at work? Share your stories! I’d love to hear from you.




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