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Former Minnesota Vikings Linebacker Chad Greenway to headline WIN in Workforce Summit

  • August 17, 2021

South Dakota native and former Minnesota Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway will headline the annual WIN in Workforce Summit on October 28 at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center.

The annual workforce symposium brings together industry leaders, innovative educators, and business professionals from the upper Midwest region to prioritize, strategize, and energize workforce development.

Greenway, known for mental and physical resilience and strong work ethic, will kick off the event with a conversation on leadership.

“I’m excited about it,” Greenway said. “I love to break it down and tell the whole story about my background and where my leadership skills started.”

Long before he became a leader in the football huddle, Greenway gained leadership skills on his family farm in Mount Vernon, managing kids younger than he was. They built fences, moved cattle, and took on added responsibilities.

“That gave me the opportunity to be very selfless in my thought process of what it took to make a farm run and to thrive in that role and get better and strong,” he said. “Learning how to lead someone without an ego, I applied it in college, dropping back down and being a freshman and working your way up. Same thing in the NFL. The pressures that come with being a high pick and as a linebacker being a required leader in the huddle.”

In today’s workplace, there needs to be an emphasis on culture, he added.

“Are we a company people want to work for? Suppose the pool we’re hiring from has shrunk to essentially almost no pool. How will I attract that savvy young person coming out of college, or the veteran in the field you want to bring over? How do I separate myself?”

In business, as in football, it starts with fundamentals, he suggests.

“If you have a bad game or the team has a bad game, how do you right the ship? When you strip things back to fundamentals – footwork, responding to what I see in front of me, letting my body react – I always get back to my center. And I think companies have to get back to who they are,” Greenway said. “Set that culture, lean on that, and create an environment people want to be a part of.”

He’s also increasingly familiar with the newest generation entering the workforce, as a father of four ages four to 13 who coaches kids in basketball and soccer.

“This generation gets a little bit of a bad rap,” he said. “They don’t appear to be as hardworking as the generations that have come before, and I think that’s a fallacy in a sense because the work is just different now. Kids coming out of college are programming apps and building technology. We’re not cold calling for ad sales anymore. We’re working smarter to spread the word quicker, and we’re more efficient now than ever.”

No matter what the work, it gets back to being where people want to be, he added.

“How do I make it comfortable – not always fun, but an environment where kids want to come be part of that,” he said.

Greenway brings a valuable perspective to the topic of workforce and leadership, said Dana Dykhouse, president of First PREMIER Bank.

“We’ve had him speak to our staff before on lessons in leadership, and he has a really unique and great perspective on it,” he said. “He’s just got a great style and story from growing up in Mount Vernon to the bright lights of Iowa in college and his career with the Vikings.”

Chad Greenway’s leadership discussion kicks off at 12:00 Noon. Following Greenway, WIN Summit has nine breakout sessions with 43 talent and workforce experts. Experts will share their organizational strategies involved in talent development, attraction, and retention, to help and enhance your talent management initiatives. 

“WIN Summit break-out sessions have incredible and very tangible workforce tips to help organizations of all sizes,” shared Michelle Lavallee, CEO of South Dakota Children’s Home Society.” 

Human Resources professionals may also earn five continuing educational credits for attending WIN in Workforce Summit 2021 Telecast. 

“We’re thrilled to welcome Chad Greenway and grateful to First PREMIER for making it happen,” said Denise Guzzetta, vice president of talent and workforce development. “His message about what talent today wants in employment is very timely and will set the tone for an incredibly valuable day. We look forward to connecting him and dozens of other experts with tactical strategies you can immediately apply back in the workplace.”

Click here to learn more and register for the WIN in Workforce Summit.