Working from Home & Other Tips to Flatten the Curve While Supporting Your Community

As our global community, country, state and cities work together to support public health and safety in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak, we can all do our part as individuals to flatten the curve. As we move to remote work and prioritize social distancing, STF has some tips for what we can do as individuals to cope with these changes and support our local economy and communities.

Working from Home

As companies transition to remote work in order to flatten the exponential spread of coronavirus, STF has a few tips to help you work productively from home:

  1. Ensure your tech set up
    As you start your remote working endeavors, ensure that all your tech is set up correctly. From laptops to webcams to other necessary applications, make sure all your telecommunications lines are open with your employer and clients. You can’t get the work done if you don’t have the right tools. Contact your IT services and ensure everything you need will work from your home.
  2. Carve out a space
    Find a space in your house where you can focus where there typically isn’t a lot of action. If you have a home office, great. If not, carve out a corner in your dining room, living room or bedroom to work. Make sure you have enough space to stretch out with your computer and other necessary supplies like a notepad and pens. Having your own space will help encourage your productivity.
  3. Set up a routine
    To prevent temptations to procrastinate and slack off, establish a routine for yourself. In the morning, get dressed and brew your coffee as if you were making your commute to the office. This will help prepare you for the work day. Throughout your day, schedule time for focused work and for short breaks. At the end of the day, log off and distance yourself from your workspace. This schedule will help you maintain a work-life balance as you work remotely.

Supporting Your Local Community

As our community faces health and economic hardship, here are some helpful ways we can support one another and make sure our favorite local businesses can open their doors again soon:

  1. Shop Smart
    When grocery shopping, limit your purchases to two quantities of any item. This will ensure there are enough items to go around. Additionally, if you see a price tag marked “WIC” try to pick a different brand of that item. “WIC” indicates that the item is approved for the federal supplemental nutrition program. If “WIC” items run out, individuals on the program will leave the store empty handed. Shop smart to ensure everyone can stock up for social distancing.
  2. Check on Your Neighbors and Friends
    With today’s technology it is easier than ever to check in with each other from afar. Use video chat, text and phone calls to check in on the well-being of your friends and neighbors regularly.

With these tips, we hope you will join us in doing our part to flatten the curve and support our community.

Authored by Madeline Roper. Photo by Christine Sandu on Unsplash.

The death last week of Jack Welch marked the passing of a leader whose management style the New York Times characterized as “the superstar executive (who) is often criticized today as a symbol of corporate greed and economic inequity.”

Welch, the former G.E. chief executive, was a larger-than-life figure whose power earned him the nickname “Neutron Jack.” Along with charismatic CEOs like Lee Iacocca, Welch personified the 1980s “greed is good” executive – a leader whose command-and-control style struck fear into his employees.

They were omnipotent. They had all the answers. Followers jumped at their command. And no one questioned their authority.

But today is different. Leadership styles have evolved. To paraphrase another 1980s slogan, this isn’t your grandfather’s era of leadership.

Authoritarianism is a thing of the past. (At least in business. I’ll save political discussions for another time.) One-way edicts from “on high” are gone. The public – including employees and the media – is more skeptical of business leaders; our trust in them is eroding.

Today’s most effective organizations are run by collaborative, democratic styles of leadership. Cross-function teams are “in.” Thus, persuasion and influence are more important than ever – even (and especially) among leaders.

And while this form of leadership is tougher to master, it can be much more powerful than the iron fist.

“The day when you could yell and scream and beat people into good performance is over,” says Lawrence Bossidy, retired CEO of Allied Signal. “Today you have to appeal to them by helping them see how they can get from here to there – by establishing credibility, and by giving them some reason to follow. Do all those things, and they’ll knock down doors.”

Effective leaders know how to recognize the emotional state of their peers, and adapt their emotional fervor accordingly. They know how to connect.

Contrary to conventional wisdom, not all business decisions are made with logic and reason. “If we scratch the surface,” reports the Harvard Business Review, “we will always find emotions at play. Good leaders are aware of the primacy of emotions and are responsive to them.”

In his last days, Jack Welch confessed to business author William Cohan about some of his regrets in dealing with people. It was a rare display of self-doubt and vulnerability.

Always a student of human behavior, perhaps the old, corporate lion recognized that barbarous leadership is a relic from days gone by.

Russ Florence is a partner at the consulting firm of Schnake Turnbo Frank. He writes a monthly column for The Journal Record. Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash.

Special thanks to the American Advertising Federation Tenth District for naming our firm a Mosaic Award honoree!

The American Advertising Federation Tenth District announced winners for the organization’s diversity and inclusion awards. The honorees will be celebrated at the inaugural Mosaic Awards on Friday, April 17, 2020 at 6 p.m. at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. The Mosaic Awards recognize individuals, companies and agencies within the four-state district of Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas whose commitment to diversity and inclusion is evident through their creative work and organization-wide initiatives.

Nominations for the 2019 – 2020 Mosaic Awards were accepted from American Advertising Federation club leaders, members, individuals and companies within the district. A panel of six industry professionals from across the U.S. evaluated the nominees within nine AAF National Mosaic categories.

2020 AAF Tenth District Mosaic Award Winners:

  • Workforce Inclusion
    Schnake Turnbo Frank, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Mosaic Champion
    Pete Lerma | Principal & Founder, Richards/Lerma, Dallas, Texas
  • Diversity & Inclusion Integrated Campaign
    “My Story” – Equality Texas, Corpus Christi, Texas
  • Diversity & Inclusion Student Programs
    Ghost, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Mosaic Champion
    Valentina Gomez Bravo, Founder & Creative Director | Bunker +58, Tomball, Texas
  • Mosaic Champion
    Lopez Negrete Communications, Houston, Texas
  • Mosaic Talent in Advertising
    Gilbreath Communications | I am Life Campaign, Houston, Texas
  • Mosaic Talent in Advertising – Content Creation
    Lopez Negrete Communications | Walmart Holiday, Houston, Texas
  • Supplier Diversity
    Contracting and Employment Support – Muscogee (Creek) Nation, Okmulgee, Oklahoma

For more information, and to purchase tickets for the Mosaic Awards, visit the AAF Tenth District website:

Alex Lopez Negrete, President and CEO of Lopez Negrete Communications, will serve as master of ceremonies for the evening. The event includes a cocktail hour and entry to the Oklahoma City Museum of Art’s galleries (featuring works by Dale Chihuly and Kehinde Wiley). The Mosaic winners will be honored at a dinner and ceremony immediately following which will celebrate diversity across the district. The Mosaic Awards will be held annually in conjunction with ADvent10n, AAF District 10’s annual convention.


Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the American Advertising Federation, a national trade association, is the “Unifying Voice for Advertising.” The AAF encompasses a nationally coordinated grassroots network of advertisers, agencies, media companies, local advertising clubs, and university chapters. The AAF includes more than 200 local clubs across the country representing nearly 40,000 advertising professionals.

Photography: Jim Beckel/The Oklahoman

At some point, I became a lark. Josh Ritter is, too.

Ritter does his best work in the mornings. He rises early and sits at his kitchen table, writing songs. If it’s going well, he plows through lunch without noticing. If he needs a break, he takes a walk around the neighborhood to reset his frame of mind.

He leaves tasks that require less focus – phone calls with his manager, working on recording logistics – to the afternoon. He reworks his creative output in the evening.

Author Daniel Pink refers to this as “understanding the hidden patterns of everyday life.” In his book When, Pink uses research to examine the notion of timing. Much of the book is devoted to understanding your chronotype – that is, when during the day you’re at your peak.

“We are smarter, faster, dimmer, slower, more creative, and less creative in some parts of the day than others,” Pink writes.

Most of us are what he calls a lark – people who are at their best in the morning. While it’s easy to categorize them as morning people, it’s not about mood. It’s about focus, energy and outlook.

“Early in the day our minds are more vigilant,” Pink writes. “We can keep distractions outside our cerebral gates.”

Thus, Pink suggests trying to conduct your most important work in the morning – tasks that require steadfast critical and creative thinking; difficult conversations that warrant a clear head; tough decisions that demand a razor-sharp mind.

By afternoon, the day begins to wear us down. We get distracted and tired. If possible, Pink recommends conducting more mundane tasks after lunch. Don’t squander those peak morning hours catching up on routine emails; push it to afternoon.

Likewise, mornings are usually the best time to receive information. Researchers analyzed more than 26,000 corporate earnings calls over six years, analyzing the emotional tenor of these conversations – which could, as a consequence, affect the company’s stock price. The results were clear. Morning calls were often reasonably upbeat. As the day progressed, the “tone grew more negative and less resolute,” only to recover after the market’s closing bell.

Pink cites dozens of examples – from the habits of writers, to the success rate of surgeries, to attorneys writing briefs – to illustrate his point.

None of us can control our calendar entirely. But as When tells us, we best avoid the doldrums of the afternoon when doing high-stakes work.

Russ Florence is a partner of Schnake Turnbo Frank. He writes a monthly column for The Journal Record.

In the 25 years I’ve been a runner, I’ve noticed a few things.

I’ve noticed I always feel better after a run than I did before; I’m always glad I ran.

I’ve noticed more about cities – street art, interesting buildings, beautiful parks, people walking dogs – than I would ever have noticed from a vehicle.

And I’ve noticed that in January, I see runners I’ve never seen before. It’s the annual arrival of the New Year’s Resolution runners.

By February, they’re gone.

As we get our 2020 goals on track – personally, professionally, organizationally – let’s remember two very important keys to achieving them: The first is to start; the second is to continue.

This week a friend posted a talk from author Anne Lamott about what she’s learned in life. One item in particular struck home. It deals with writing and other creative endeavors, but it could apply to any pursuit.

“Every writer you know writes really terrible first drafts,” Lamott says. “But they keep their butt in the chair. That’s the secret of life. That’s probably the main difference between you and them. They just do it. They do it by prearrangement with themselves. They do it as a debt of honor.”

She tells a story about her older brother, who as a fourth grader became overwhelmed by a term paper about birds. Their dad told him, “Just take it bird by bird, buddy. Just read about pelicans, and write about pelicans in your own voice. Then find out about chickadees, and tell us about them in your own voice. Then geese.”

Those New Year’s Resolution runners are good about starting. Continuing is tough.

Several years ago, a friend decided to take up running. He tried going a mile on his first run, but couldn’t finish. He tried again, and again. Finally, he got frustrated and quit.

Most people want immediate results. But it takes time, discipline, and patience. When I started running, I could go only a couple of blocks. (And only at night – I didn’t want the neighbors seeing me.) But a friend told me to run those two blocks every day, until it felt comfortable. Then, go three, and repeat. And keep building, block by block. Eventually, you’ll go a mile, he said. Then two.

In sizing up your 2020 goals, don’t get overwhelmed by the enormity. First, start. Then continue. Bird by bird, block by block.

Russ Florence is a partner of Schnake Turnbo Frank. He writes a monthly column for The Journal Record.

The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) – Tulsa Chapter honored our very own Steve Turnbo with the first —The Steve Turnbo Lifetime Achievement Award this month during the annual Silver Link Awards.

The chapter recognized Steve for his 40-year career as a public relations professional in Tulsa, as well as his work mentoring the next generation of PRSA members. PRSA Tulsa plans to take nominations for the Steve Turnbo Lifetime Achievement Award, but they will only bestow the award upon someone who has invested in public relations and Tulsa with the same dedication as Steve.

A die-hard University of Tulsa fan, Steve began his career as the sports information director at The University of Tulsa. Three years later, he joined one of Oklahoma’s largest advertising firms where he worked his way up to vice president of the public relations division. In 1981, Steve started his own PR firm and later merged with Schnake and Associates, Inc. to create Schnake, Turnbo and Associates.

Throughout his career, Steve has given so much of his time to his community. His civic involvements include The University of Tulsa board of trustees, the John Hope Franklin Center for Reconciliation, Domestic Violence Intervention Service, Tulsa Regional Chamber and more.

Many professionals at this year’s Silver Link Awards spoke on Steve’s contributions to Tulsa, his steady mentorship and his kind friendship. The awards also recognized campaigns and tactics on a wide variety of subjects from sustainability to Medicaid to higher education. Michelle Brooks with the City of Tulsa received the Young Professional of the Year Award, and STF alum Kari Shults received the Public Relations Professional of the Year Award for her work at Tulsa Community College.

Since 1952, the Public Relations Society of America Tulsa Chapter has provided more than 100 members in the public relations, journalism, communications, advertising and marketing industries a sense of community and strategic professional development. The PRSA Tulsa Chapter hosts monthly luncheon networking opportunities and supports members as they seek accreditation in public relations (APR).

The Silver Link Awards is a way for Tulsa’s public relations community to gather for dinner and good company as we recognize the best in our field across a variety of categories. And this year it was all about Steve Turnbo.

WHAT: Our Inclusion & Diversity Summit is a full-day conference featuring experts from around the city, state and region focused on integrating inclusion and diversity initiatives into organizations. The Summit will feature two keynote speakers, along with breakout sessions and interactive discussions. These experts will share their knowledge, best practices and insights on issues ranging from corporate culture to supplier diversity, to ROI. Learn how to design effective programs using the industry’s best practices, discover new strategies that have been successful at corporations across the country, and examine the business case for corporate I&D programs. from an economical and cultural standpoint.

WHEN and WHERE is the Summit?: September 4, 2019, from
9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at the Metro Technology Centers Springlake Campus 1900 Springlake Drive Oklahoma City, OK 73111

HOW MUCH are tickets and are they still available? Tickets are $160 and YES! Tickets are still available. They can be purchased here. Lunch is included.

9 a.m. Welcome by Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt
9:45 a.m. Morning Breakout Sessions

  • “The Business Case for Inclusion & Diversity” – Dr. Allen Gradnigo, (Leadership/Management Track)
  • “Governance for Diversity Among Nonprofit Boards of Directors” – Janetta Cravens, Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits (Small Business/Organization Track)
  • “It’s a Good Time to Be Blind” – Mark Ivy (General Track)
  • “Diversity & Inclusion Leadership: Engaging Your Employee Resource Groups” – Cinthya Allen (General Track)
  • “Recruitment & Retention” – Monica Krienke and Courtney Lindsay, Oklahoma City Indian Clinic (HR Track)

11 a.m. Mid-Morning Breakout Sessions

  • “Pushing the Inclusion Agenda Beyond HR” – Silvia Siqueira (HR Track)
  • “Immigrants in the Workplace: A Panel Discussion on Inclusion” – Diane Eason Contreras, Hannah Jackson, and Deacon Kevin Sartorius (Leadership/Management Track)
  • “Creating Inclusive Nonprofits: Always a Journey, Never a Destination” – Taryn Norman and Molly Bryant (Small Business/Organization Track)
  • “The Impact of Mental Health in the Workplace” – Lucinda Morte (General Track)
  • “When an Algorithm Is Biased: How Technology Can Amplify Inequities” – Corey White (General Track)

Noon – Lunch with Keynote

“Developing a Sustainable Culture of Inclusion: The Food & Hospitality Perspective” – Gerry Fernandez, Multicultural Foodservice & Hospitality Alliance

1:45 p.m. Afternoon Breakout Sessions

  • “Dos and Don’ts of Diversity Initiatives: A Panel Discussion for HR Pros” – Brian Martin, Andre’ Caldwell, and Sam Fulkerson (HR Track)
  • “How to Start and Sustain an I&D Strategy” – Monica Diaz (Leadership/Management Track)
  • “Managing Unconscious Bias” – Lt. Wayland Cubit (General Track)
  • “Developing a Culture of Inclusion” – Eran Harrill (Small Business/Organization Track)

3 p.m. Afternoon Keynote

“The Power of Inclusion!” – LaTricia Hill-Chandler, Arvest Bank

4 p.m. Wrap Up

MORE QUESTIONS? email us at

ABOUT STF: Schnake Turnbo Frank is an Oklahoma-based organization that delivers strategic communication and management consulting services. Since 1970, STF has consistently provided direction and the necessary tools to ensure their client’s success in the office, community and online. The firm has offices in Oklahoma City and Tulsa.




We’re super excited to welcome two interns to our Tulsa office this semester! Stephanie Wimberly (left, from Oral Roberts University) and Madeline Roper (right, The University of Oklahoma).

Stephenie Wimberly, a Tulsa native, is a graduate of Union High School and Tulsa Community College. She graduated from TCC with an Associate’s Degree in Marketing, and, currently, Stephenie attends Oral Roberts University. She will graduate in December of 2019 with a Bachelor of Arts in Advertising and Public Relations.

For the past two years, she has spent her summers traveling by boat along the Amazon River in Brazil. She has a passion for helping people and loves to learn about different cultures. Plus, she really loves Brazilian food! Some of her favorite memories include making new friends despite a language barrier, playing with cute Brazilian children, speedboating through the Amazon River, and going alligator hunting at night.

A native Tulsan, Madeline Roper graduated from the University of Oklahoma in May 2019 and returned home to pursue a career in strategic communications. She joined the firm as an intern for Fall 2019.

Throughout her time at OU, Madeline honed her communications skills both inside and outside of the classroom. She served as Vice-Chair of Publicity for OU’s High School Leadership Conference. HSLC brings 300 high school juniors to OU’s campus for leadership development and college preparation. She also served as Chair of Crimson Club, OU’s official student ambassadors and historians. In these roles, she wrote and edited copy, managed social media, and planned events.

Help us welcome Madeline and Stephanie to our STF Family. If you’re interested in learning more about our internship program, visit the careers tab of our website.

Hannah Jackson recently chatted with Mike Averill with the Tulsa World about PR life and the impact of working with non-profits.

You were recently promoted to vice president of the Tulsa office. What is your role in that new position?

My first priority was to find a new balance. I’ve spent more than five years solely focused on clients, and I am now officially leading the Tulsa team. Ensuring I didn’t fail either of them during the transition was a top priority. Now that I’m six months in, the rhythm is right.

In the long term, I hope to engage more clients in our spectrum of services. One of the best parts of working in both PR (public relations) and leadership consulting is the level of impact we can have with a client. We can help with organizational change and the LinkedIn strategy to promote it. We can conduct an inclusion audit and provide leadership coaching to correct it.

When did you realize you wanted a career in public relations, and what led you in that direction?

My first introduction to public relations was my dad telling me that a “chatterbox” should go into the communications field. His parental guidance led me to UCO and later OSU-Tulsa, where I studied journalism and strategic communications.

Early on in my career, I enjoyed the variety in what I did every day, but I had not fully comprehended the impact.

I didn’t truly fall in love with PR until about 10 years ago, when I started to see the true impact of community relations, solid messaging and a good communications strategy.

With a motivating message, you can help a nonprofit raise more money; with the right television media placement, you can help feed more kids at free summer meal sites; with effective presentation skills, an entrepreneur can successfully communicate a big idea to his funders; and with good research on a target audience, you can get a school bond passed.

What is the most rewarding project you’ve worked on over the years?

I named a building once. I am inappropriately delighted every time I pass it.

But building-naming aside, I’ve had some amazing opportunities to help organizations. I have helped nonprofits hire CEOs and ensure the continued success of their mission; I have helped banks communicate brand changes in a way that both millennials and retirees can comprehend; I have helped energy companies launch social media and connect with their global employees in a way they haven’t in decades.

The PR field requires lifelong learning. I’ve learned about a range of topics thanks to this profession: manufacturing, fundraising, chemistry, education, Medicaid expansion, apartment management, employee recruitment and nutrition policy. And I combine it with our unique skill set to develop relationships with the right people, build understanding among stakeholders and, ultimately, create incremental positive changes.

All that to say — It’s hard to pick one rewarding project. But it’s somewhere between helping bring Trader Joe’s to Tulsa, helping connect homeless Tulsans to housing, protecting a grieving family, announcing Tulsa’s Mental Health Plan, giving someone the skills to speak on camera and … yes, also naming a building.

You have worked a lot with area nonprofits in your professional life. Are there any groups you are involved with outside of work?

I am thrilled that Tulsa now has an Advisory Council for Planned Parenthood of the Great Plains (which is the affiliate serving four states, including the Tulsa area). Health care access is a huge priority for me. Whether you’re homeless, without insurance or in need of birth control, access to care is a basic human right.

I also serve on the board for Global Gardens, an amazing Tulsa-based program that teaches kids about science and peace through inquiry-based learning. Students learn to grow and cook beets while also learning to communicate sadness or frustration. Their educators and student outcomes are incomparable, and I wish every child in Tulsa could participate.

On a lighter note: Last spring, my friend Terah and I also partnered with the Equality Center to launch a monthly meetup called the LGBT Women’s Network. There’s no formal programming, just an easy way to meet queer women in a safe space while highlighting LGBT-friendly Tulsa bars and restaurants.

What is something about you that people would be surprised to find out?

I was the kicker and wide receiver for a semi-pro women’s football team during college.

Hannah Jackson is a Vice President in our Tulsa office.

Our Leadership & Reputation Academy is an eight-part leadership development program aimed at new and emerging leaders in and around Oklahoma CityTulsa, Bartlesville, and Dallas. Each class is limited to 25 to 30 participants and sessions include lectures, group presentations, and role-playing.

In addition to our own time-tested, proprietary content,  we draw on materials from a variety of respected sources, including the Harvard Business Review, best-selling authors, and successful corporate executives.

The program focuses on leadership development, personal development and networking. Not only is the academy beneficial to participants, but it is also beneficial to companies and organizations as a whole. This academy prepares emerging leaders, invests in talent development and is cost effective compared to out-of-state business schools.

We are now enrolling classes for August 2019 in Tulsa, OKC and Dallas.

Looking for more info on LRA? Here are some of the benefits for participants and organizations.

To learn more or to sign up for our next class contact Hannah Jackson.