When we (Chris Thomas and Joe Natal) met in mid-2019, we instantly connected over a general lack of effectiveness relating to a diversity of young adults in the workplace. We believed in a more holistic approach and paired our experience and emerging theories with a desire to use our combined strengths and skills to make a difference in the lives of young adults. Although our primary idea was to provide a series of workshops, we realized we had more in common. So we formed the brand Working Better Together by combining our efforts and expertise.
Months of planning and developing concepts led to early 2020. Unfortunately, just before we're ready to bring new hiring and training practices to market, the Covid 19 pandemic brought the world to a halt. As we adjust to new realities and recraft our concepts, in late 2020, enter Julius Spates, a world-renowned DJ and skilled communicator with a lifetime of engagement experience. Volunteering his event production experience, we met Julius, helping us provide a space for under-resourced young adults in Chicago's forward-thinking 501c3 nonprofit YourPassion1st program.
Our visions aligned, and collectively we brought a unique perspective. After learning about each other's personal and professional experiences, we decided to focus on the benefits of relating, connecting, and engaging in the workplace. Through a series of incredible conversations combined with our vastly different backgrounds over the past two years, we developed a practical framework that organizations could use to improve workforce morale. Inspired by Julius' 3Degrees Global family member and Human-Centered Workplace expert James Christian Scott, we named our process Human Centered Engagement.
We see a world that WORKS BETTER TOGETHER when we are more self aware and engaged. This gives us the space to emerge as leaders that collaboratively solve problems in a more equitable way.
We collaborate with individuals, organizations, and communities to uncover their true potential and find creative ways for them to build and grow.
The best organizations put people first. They do this by:
We transform teams, organizations, and communities that change the world by making life better for all.
We do this by:
An accomplished business leader, Joe has spent the past 20+ years working with a wide variety of organizations in all business life-cycles - from launching start-up businesses, growing global brands, maintaining and growing mature organizations to transitioning organizations through M&A processes - to define/redefine and invent/reinvent who they were, as well those that opted to become acquired by a larger organization.
Joe has a way to provide peace and comfort to leaders so that they can clearly and confidently make bold choices to challenge the status quo. His purpose is to walk alongside others and equip them with the tools needed to transform themselves and their environments so that companies, communities, and countries can solve problems that cause inequity/inequality.
Joe is not only the Founder of Exponential Consulting Services, he is also the co-creator of Transforming Narratives, a platform to empower authors and artists to creatively share their transformational stories and inspire others to do the same.
A former Marine (MP), with 15+ years’ of entrepreneurial and leadership experience with 10 years in HR and staffing, Chris has learned to create sustainable relationships within corporate environments by listening and understanding the true motives of the organization and its employees. He continues to cultivate and follow his true passion - empowering young adults as well as mentoring and coaching organizations on how to create more equitable hiring processes and strategies.
Chris is amazing at quickly connecting with people and getting to know what they are passionate about creating. His greatest aspirations in life are to provoke change in the world, help people live out their passion, and improve the way communities live and work.
Chris is the Founder and CEO of YourPassion1st, a mentoring program for young adults that focuses on inspiring young adults to find, define, and follow their passion into the workforce through mentoring, coaching, community engagement, workshops, events, and festivals. As founder of YP1 Consulting, Chris is a mentor, coach, and community connector for organizations and community members. He also is the creator/host of the Principles of Passion Podcast. Chris uses this platform to host guests that have overcome adversity while finding, defining, and following their passion into the workforce.
An innovative problem solver and master communicator, Julius aka "the Mad Thinker" (JtMT) has spent the past 15 years supporting Entrepreneurs and Artists establish and grow their brands while creating unforgettable experiences, touring, and producing global destination music events in the group travel and hospitality space.
Since the age of 17, Julius has built a reputation for DJ entertainment and uniting music communities that have earned him worldwide acceptance and respect. His experience through events has greatly benefited his understanding of human behavior and engagement. Although having an incredible taste in music and being a kind hearted people person, arguably, his greatest gift is his ability to comprehend a vision, establish a direction, and communicate its most impactful distinctions.
Julius is also the the co-founder of Mi Casa Holiday (MCH) travel & music community + boutique events service. MCH curates full service destination vacation and entertainment experiences around the world. These experiences highlight everyday local culture (art, music, and lifestyle) in addition to elite getaways which spotlight top flight entertainment and culinary mastery.