The Denver Post
With ten years experience writing for newspapers, blogs and Fortune 500 talent development programs, I’m a versatile writer and marketing specialist with a penchant for business and culture. Really, I'm just a sucker for a good story. My content is always original, creative, and thoroughly researched. I specialize in fully developed web content, ad copy, email campaigns, press releases, proposals, webinars, articles, reviews, branding and optimization. Below are links to my work for the Denver Post, Xponents, Inc. and a discussion with Ryan Warner on Colorado Public Radio. Let's talk.
The Denver Post
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 06/26/2010 01:00:00 AM MDT In a low-lit back nook of one of Denver's oldest and arguably finest saloons hangs a copy of a letter written by former patron Neal Cassady.
Outside Guide: Commander-in-chief chow By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 02/19/2011 01:00:00 AM MST Updated: 03/15/2011 11:21:25 AM MDT Monday is Presidents Day, a special time when millions of Americans come together in homes, warehouses and cubicles to ask the immortal question: "Do we get the day off or what?"
Etsy.com showcases items handcrafted in Colorado. By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 01/30/2010 01:00:00 AM MST Updated: 02/02/2010 04:46:56 PM MST Of all ways to personalize your home, none is quite like shopping Etsy.com.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 12/18/2010 01:00:00 AM MST Updated: 12/18/2010 06:55:25 PM MST There is no such thing as a bad time for tamales. But there is perhaps no more perfect season than Christmas to enjoy these carefully husk- wrapped gifts of corn masa and endless possibilities.
By Dameon Merkl, Special to The Denver Post Posted: 02/26/2013 12:01:00 AM MST Updated: 02/26/2013 12:34:31 PM MST In a diversely populated state where place names stem from English, Spanish, French and American Indian origins, it's hardly surprising that certain geographical pronunciations vary as much as the languages from which they sprang.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 10/16/2010 01:00:00 AM MDT Updated: 10/20/2010 06:25:40 AM MDT This Halloween, instead of trying to pass yourself off as a costume- clad grade-schooler or rifling through your kid's goody bag to claim the Halloween Parent Tax, visit one of Colorado's prized candymakers to stockpile your own booty before the big night.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 04/10/2010 01:00:00 AM MDT If there's one thing Colorado seems to hate, it's an empty glass. While it's no secret the state is home to an abundance of exceptional microbreweries and wineries, a rising tide of local distilleries is bubbling to the state's hops-soaked surface.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 04/30/2011 01:00:00 AM MDT Updated: 05/10/2011 06:56:43 AM MDT There are two surefire cures for cabin fever: road trips and food festivals. So why not combine the two?
Cornucopia of fall fun By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 10/24/2009 01:00:00 AM MDT It's like Coney Island landed on a farm. Part working field, part old- timey carnival, many of the season's popular pumpkin patches seem more like scaled-back amusement parks than glorified produce aisles.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 02/20/2012 01:00:00 AM MST Updated: 03/05/2012 04:23:47 PM MST Everyone knows the old adage, "You've got to spend money to make money." That's true to a point, but lately people are discovering that it is possible to make substantial improvements to their lives with a minimal investment.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 04/02/2012 01:00:00 AM MDT Updated: 04/02/2012 03:43:52 AM MDT The companionship of an animal is invaluable. Yet for many current and prospective pet owners, finances rank among their top concerns. Costs for food, toys and vaccinations add up, and, all too often, unexpected or preventable emergencies end in cost-driven decisions.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 08/27/2012 12:01:00 AM MDT Updated: 08/31/2012 01:09:38 PM MDT Just because Labor Day is the year's last stand for white pumps doesn't mean its celebration should resemble a yacht-club cocktail soiree. The time-honored holiday barbecue should be simple, affordable and fun.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 10/13/2012 12:01:00 AM MDT You may have already seen traces of a mysterious forager, or heard the patter of tiny footsteps scurrying across your kitchen floor. It's migration time for a slew of creepy critters, and for many, the nearest building is their cozy winter destination of choice.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 05/05/2012 01:00:00 AM MDT If 2011 was the year of the vampire, 2012 is the year of the archer - and the trials of "Hunger Games" she-ro Katniss Everdeen are just the tip of the proverbial arrow.
In the olden days of pagers and VHS tapes, when you needed help with tuition you might hop on the landline to dial up your grandparents. But in the era of social media, crowdfunding is the latest incarnation of that age-old custom of asking for financial help.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 08/18/2012 12:01:00 AM MDT They're gnarled. They're battered. They're full of nails and dings and completely inconsistent in color. Sometimes, they're so full of chemicals you don't even want to touch them. That hasn't stopped a host of recyclers, crafters and designers from falling in love with wood from pallets.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 06/11/2012 01:00:00 AM MDT With summer close at hand, the time is now to get out of the house and into a Colorado outdoor adventure. Although most of the big seasonal gear sales happen earlier in the year, plenty of great deals remain with suppliers who specialize in used, discounted and rental equipment.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 12/07/2012 12:01:00 AM MST Updated: 12/07/2012 08:34:55 AM MST If providing one of the most drool-inducing phone apps wasn't enough to earn Forkly a toasty spot in your heart, Sunday's Bacon and Beer Festival just might do the trick.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 09/28/2012 12:01:00 AM MDT Updated: 09/28/2012 10:35:04 AM MDT It started out as a small mob of like-minded daredevils grinding down elementary school hand rails in their inline skates.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 11/15/2012 11:49:57 AM MST Updated: 11/16/2012 01:07:09 PM MST Although the phrase "it's on like Tron" might sound snappier, there is only one universally accepted way to truly get it on. And that's like you-know-who. Ah, Donkey Kong.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 11/30/2012 12:01:00 AM MST Updated: 11/30/2012 11:40:28 AM MST A wave of Christmas cheer will flood LoDo on Saturday as hundreds of bar-crawling Santas will bid tidings of good cheer, cold beer and charitable donations.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 05/25/2013 12:01:00 AM MDT Updated: 05/25/2013 01:58:53 AM MDT It was a simple problem: The basement studio in Nikki Kelly's south Denver home needed a stylish cabinet to replace a cardboard shelving system. Rather desperately.
Load up the boughs or try unconventional themes to express your cheer By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 11/29/2007 01:00:00 AM MST Somewhere between the candy canes and the popcorn garland, it can be difficult to judge where playful tree-topping ends and stark-raving yuletide madness begins. Fear not.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 04/11/2009 12:30:00 AM MDT Car lovers can push, pull or drag the family to the Colorado School of Mines today for the annual Engineering Days Car Show. Anyone in the market for a new ride probably won't find cars like these at dealerships anytime soon.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 03/21/2009 12:30:00 AM MDT Adrenaline junkies jonesin' for a shot of fuel-injected, death-defying weekend mayhem should look no further than Freestyle Motocross tonight at the Pepsi Center. Enthusiasts now tout Freestyle Motocross, a sport previously banished to intermission sideshows, as one of the fastest-growing action sports in the country.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 04/10/2008 01:00:00 AM MDT Updated: 04/10/2008 01:28:04 PM MDT It happened gradually. Water was taking longer and longer to disappear down the bathroom sink. Then one day, it sat completely still and went nowhere. A low-end liquid clog combatant failed to clear the pipe.
Posted: 12/06/2007 01:00:00 AM MST Updated: 12/12/2007 11:51:01 AM MST For those looking to liven up their holiday gift arsenal, the past is ripe for the picking. Whether it's a high-tech gadget with nostalgic charm or an old classic with a new spin, retro gifts are the perfect way to break away from the sock- and tie-giving crowd.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 11/01/2007 01:00:00 AM MDT Add "GoDusting" to the list of things best done with the blinds down. Not that there's anything shameful about dusting and walking around with a stupid grin, but doing both at once is just creepy.
By Dameon Merkl Special to The Denver Post Posted: 01/24/2008 01:00:00 AM MST Updated: 02/14/2008 11:37:20 AM MST Few chores expose your dirty secrets like sweeping and mopping. These are rarely happy tasks and seldom filled with sweet reunions.
Colorado Public Radio
How do you pronounce "Colorado"? What about other cities across the state like "Buena Vista"? With so many people moving to the state, questions of pronunciation abound. Writer Dameon Merkl spent weeks calling historians, long-time residents and city halls to get the final word.
Organizations sometimes seem to have a love-hate relationship with talent development. On one hand, they realize the critical importance of coaching and training to educate, enlighten and engage their workforce. On the other hand, when the rolling waves of revenue get turbulent, coaching and training are often the first budget items on the chopping block.
Are you familiar with this feeling? Employee engagement is low. There is a high turnover rate and no succession plan. The future is uncertain. Wouldn't it be great if the myriad of complications and headaches at work could be solved with a single magic bullet? Well they can't.
Just this week, Deb Siverson posted a blog about Transforming Employee Engagement. In her writing, she gives some startling statistics about the misconceptions of employee engagement and offers great ways to increase engagement in organizations. Here, we've listed some ideas from a different perspective: what not to do if you want an engaged workforce.
It has been said that vision without action is a dream, and action without vision is a nightmare. In business and in life, it is important to not only know where you are going, but exactly how you plan to get there. The map to success is called your action plan.
Your business has made another successful trip around the sun. Now what? Just as swarms of freshly resolved fitness fanatics inundate gyms around this time, business leaders tend to take this opportunity to realign and look at what they want to change in the new calendar year. In short, businesses make resolutions, too.
According to a recent study by the Human Capital Institute (HCI) and the International Coach Federation (ICF), the case for coaching cultures is clear. Sixty percent of organizations with strong coaching cultures reported revenue to be above average, compared to their peer group.
The particular causes of office conflict are infinite, but the roots from which conflicts arise are more common. Wouldn't it be great if everyone just accepted the fact that my way is the best way? Probably not, but the simple truth is that will never happen.
There are certain conversations nobody likes: the ones in which we have to deliver bad news, discuss a sensitive or "political" subject, or talk about a project or meeting that's gone wrong. The very idea of these kinds of conversations make many shutter.
The case for diversity in the workplace is nothing new. However, when most of us hear the word diversity, we automatically distinguish identities in terms of race, gender, and age. The role of cognitive diversity, the differences in our thought and problem-solving processes, is rarely considered.
There is no way to prevent conflict in the workplace, not that you'd want to. Conflict, while sometimes uncomfortable, can lead to innovation, creativity and collaboration. But good things don't necessarily stem from conflict automatically, especially in the workplace.
Effective organizations don't attribute their success to the homogeneity of their workforces. Thriving companies realize that their greatest assets are impassioned employees, working as much for their own personal development as for the company's bottom line. Greatness is achieved through the collaboration of unique talents and visions, and realized through the alignment of an organization's goals and that of the individual.
It is widely accepted that an organization's greatest assets are its employees. But just as important as the skills and talents of each team member is the success in which the individuals work and collaborate with one another. Common vision, strong partnering skills, and collaborative goal setting are key elements of any successful team.
A Vision Statement is more than a detailed daydream. It is the result of considerable research and soul-searching. As the minutia of daily tasks, partner relations, and project management begin to consume an organization's course, it is imperative that a navigation point be at hand to maintain a company's necessary direction and unite all efforts toward a common goal.
In the current news cycle of partisan politics, high-stakes debates, and ceaseless gaffe hunting, public models of conflict resolution can be hard to come by. When managing conflict, there is no catch-all method to successful resolution.
In today's work environment, where we are constantly reminded that simply having a job at all should be cause for gratitude, the concept of workplace happiness has been quietly making a comeback. It is commonly believed that happy workers are better workers, and that a happy work team has tangible effects on an organization's bottom line.
The common definition of Workforce Planning is simple enough: Ensure you have enough of the right people in the right positions doing the right things at the right time. The tricky part is the execution. Most managers consciously or unconsciously evaluate these considerations every day.
Companies are learning to work with less, and often, that means that today's employees are expected to do more than ever. According to a recent Gallup Small Business Index survey, 42% of small business owners who hired new workers in 2010, hired fewer employees than they needed.
It's never too late to learn. Whether attending formal classes, working on a degree, or just adding a new skill to their repertoire, adult learners are one of the fastest growing demographics in the educational field. Adult learners are different from their younger counterparts.
Low self-esteem impacts more than your opinion of yourself. It also affects the impression you give to colleagues, clients and superiors. Sufferers of low self-esteem harbor subconscious behaviors that sabotage career advancement, disrupt inner-office relations, and impede negotiations with prospective clientele and hiring managers.
The holidays are often a time of close family, good food, and abnormally large heaps of stress. Not only must today's celebrants surmount traditional challenges like main dishes, place settings, and uncle Herman's penchant for off-color knock-knock jokes, but many are strapped by financial burdens, extended unemployment, and increasing depression.