Our organization is absolutely committed to being recognized as one of America’s best places to work. Fundamental to our philosophy is creating a work environment and culture where each person is able to contribute their talents fully, grow and an individual, and have a clear understanding each day in how their individual and team contributions create value for the company and its customers. In other words, success is dependent upon creating the environment where each person realizes the value of their work, is recognized for it, and leaves footprints that have a lasting impression.
Independent research sponsored by the Great Place to Work Institute examining the “100 Best Companies” list with Fortune since their inception in 1998, using various profitability indicators, has illustrated publically traded 100 Best Companies consistently outperform major stock indices over various periods of time preceding or following the publication 0f the 100 Best lists. This supports our belief and philosophy that when institutions focus on their people with the same effort as other critical key performance measures, they provide to their investors improved financial return and value creation.
A key foundation in creating a “Best Place to Work” company begins with the value we place upon US federal Equal Employment Opportunity laws of our country further supported by the demonstrated behaviors of our leadership team and associates. Our company prohibits discrimination in employment because of race, color, sex, religion, age, national origin, disability, citizenship status, sexual orientation, sexual identity, participation in military service, or any other unlawful basis in accordance with all applicable federal, state and local laws.
Supporting the foundation of Equal Employment Opportunity is a progressive organizational culture that is created, embraced and nourished by each individual, each day. We use as a guidepost in building and supporting our employment culture, the model advocated by “Great Place to Work Institute”. This model focuses on the following five dimensions:
- Trust is the essential ingredient for the primary workplace relationship between the employee and the employer. According to the model developed by Best Place to Work Institute, trust is composed of three dimensions: Credibility, Respect, and Fairness.
- Credibility - means managers regularly communicate with employees about the company's direction and plans - and solicit their ideas. It involves coordinating people and resources efficiently and effectively, so that employees know how their work relates to the company's goals. It's the integrity management brings to the business. To be credible, words must be followed by action.
- Respect - involves providing employees with the equipment, resources, and training they need to do their job. It means appreciating good work and extra effort. It includes reaching out to employees and making them partners in the company's activities, fostering a spirit of collaboration across departments and creating a work environment that's safe and healthy. Respect means that work/life balance is a practice, not a slogan
- Fairness - at an organization that's fair, economic success is shared equitably through compensation and benefit programs. Everybody receives equitable opportunity for recognition. Decisions on hiring and promotions are made impartially, and the workplace seeks to free itself of discrimination, with clear processes for appealing and adjudicating disputes. To be fair, you must be just.
- Pride and Camaraderie The final two dimensions of the Institute's model relate to workplace relationships between employees and their jobs and company (Pride), and between the employee and other employees (Camaraderie). As companies become great, the division between management and labor fades. The workplace becomes a community. Employees take pride in their job, their team, and their company. They feel that they can be themselves at work. They celebrate the successes of their peers and cooperate with others throughout the organization. People take pleasure in their work - and in the people they work with - in a deep and lasting way. They want to stay around for their careers.
Lastly, we measure continuous progress and success annually with our people by participating in three annual feedback events:
- In February of each year we use The Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award “Are We Making Progress” questionnaire. This questionnaire helps focus on improvement and communication efforts on areas needing the most attention from the perspective of our employees.
- In February of each year we also use The Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award “Are We Making Progress for Leaders” questionnaire. This is companion piece to Are We Making Progress? It is a senior leadership questionnaire specifically designed for organizations dedicated to performance excellence. It asks the same questions as the Are We Making Progress? Questionnaire, but from the perspective of leadership.
- In August of each year we review our process for Fortune 100 Best Places to Work for in America, “Small & Medium Companies” category. This involves an extensive survey process of all employees measuring success in the five guidepost areas of Credibility, Respect, Fairness, Pride, and Camaraderie.
We believe our employment philosophy must be a work in progress; one that ensures we are constantly evaluating our culture based upon best practices, a changing global marketplace and engaging individual preferences for how work can be done efficiently and free of bureaucratic encumbrances. Lastly, we believe each person must be a partner in the business and share in the equity of the value we create together.