For the next installment in our “Meet Our…” series, I’d like to introduce you to Zen Planner’s Director of Talent and Culture. We learned so much about Casey, the “Zen Planner Mom”, conducting this interview. Read on to find out about her tastes in books, her most embarrassing moment and the place she calls “Disney World for adults”.
Who are you and what do you do here?
I’m Casey Steiner, the Director of Talent and Culture here at Zen Planner. I am the obnoxious wife who sings show tunes in the house and makes up show tunes about mundane life stuff. I love trashy television and I love to read. That’s who I am!
Tell me a little more about your job.
In my mind, it’s everything-people. My customers are everybody who works here, so I’m very internally-focused. I want to make sure everyone is given every opportunity possible in terms of passion projects and promotion opportunities – that’s where a lot of my focus is. Also, making sure I’m supporting people in any sort of cultural endeavors, like game night, soccer leagues, whatever it is – I throw it on the credit card a lot.
That’s a lot of power!
It is a lot of power. I head up recruiting, too, which is such a big deal here at Zen Planner, making sure we’re getting the best people possible on the team, and keeping the best people possible.
How long have you been here and what did you do before you got here?
I’ve been here for over two years; I started in June 2014. Prior to this, I opened Castle Rock Adventist Hospital as one of two on-site HR people. I was there before the hospital opened, and within the first few months, we’d brought on 500 staff members. Right before that, I cut my teeth in the HR world at another web company in Denver, and that’s where I fell in love with the people-side of the organization. From there, I realized that what I really wanted was to be at a company where I could make decisions and work a little more creatively. Typically, HR is very structured – and rightfully so in some regards – but [it can also be] stuffy. There’s a balance where you can abide by all of the laws that are out there for good reason AND still have flexibility and creativity, which is what I’m able to do here at Zen Planner. That’s what makes it such an amazing place for me personally.
What do you like to read?
Last night I downloaded three or four new books; I’m going on vacation tomorrow, so I paralleled my books to my vacation. Since we’re starting in France, I downloaded a novel on Diane de Poitiers – she was the mistress of Francis I, who was a French king who gave her a beautiful chateau that I’m going to visit. I wanted to read a historical novel about her – I thought about going biography but then thought, Nah, there has to be a good trashy romance novel about her out there, and there is! We’re ending the trip in Ireland, so I downloaded a book of Irish fairy tales and Celtic blessings.
What do you like to do outside of the office? Besides trash TV and reading…
I’m a wannabe gardener but I’ve managed to burn every single plant I’ve ever planted outside. My husband Joe and I love to hike; we love to be in the mountains in the summer – Vail is our thing; it’s Disney World for adults. Park the car and you don’t have to drive for days! Go to amazing restaurants after a day of hiking! I don’t camp, but I like being outside and then coming back inside to shower and go to a nice dinner – that’s the type of person I am.
Where are you from originally?
Born and raised in Columbia, Missouri. I lived there for 19 years and then ran away to work on a cruise ship for a year; I went to school in Michigan, lived in Rhode Island, lived in Los Angeles and now I’m here in Denver!
What were you doing in those places?
Theater, mostly, but when I moved to LA I got in on a different side of the industry – I worked for a talent agent out there; that’s how I got some administrative experience, both accounting and scheduling. On the cruise ship, I started as a kids’ counselor and migrated into being a social hostess, like calling BINGO, running theme nights, things like that. We were in the Caribbean for the first six months, then South America and Central America; we went through the Panama Canal and up the west coast into Alaska.
What do you order at Starbucks?
Usually just a tall drip.
WOW. Having worked at Starbucks, do you know how rare that is?!
I’m also really cheap; spending a lot of money on Starbucks is not my thing.
How do you like to sweat?
Recently it’s been yoga. I do it here, mostly in our gym and at CorePower. I have videos at home but I’m not good at that – I lose interest. I need an instructor telling me what to do, and I love the adjustments instructors make – that’s my favorite.
What’s your most embarrassing moment?
I got caught stealing deodorant from Wal-Mart. I was in high school and on a poms team, and I forgot to put deodorant on and didn’t have any cash on me. This was before credit cards and I needed it, so I took it, and the guys saw me and made me put it back. It was so embarrassing – of all the things to get caught stealing.
It was obviously a lesson learned!
Oh yeah. 16-years old, it was terrifying.
What’s your perfect day?
I love mornings, so a perfect day would include a good amount of time to enjoy my coffee, sit outside on the back patio, avoid any sort of news or reality and read for a couple of hours. Hopefully Joe would have the day off, too, and we could go do something together or just hang out.