Winning a Best Places to Work Award is a very positive thing for the companies that do win and particularly for the workforce. Depending on the selection methodology the anonymous feedback from the employees is what puts the company in the winner circle.
My recent interviews with 20 leaders of the companies that won best places to work awards in my local market (San Diego County) provides me with great insight about what it takes to win the award. In many cases the companies have won the best places to work for more than one year.
?The question is, what does it take to become a best place to work winner?
It?s all about the culture. All of the winners I interviewed have a CEO that is focused on the success of the business driven by the success of the team. I didn?t interview even one CEO who lead me to believe it was all about them.
There is no doubt that the CEO and senior team must be the drivers behind the development of the winning culture in the early days of the organization or of their tenure. According to the leaders I interviewed the culture evolves over time and takes on a life of its own. That doesn?t mean that leaders can take their eye off the ball but it does mean that there are many members of the organization that are helping maintain the culture.
If the culture is correctly established and the members of the organization live the values behind the culture it will continue. It only takes a violation of the core values, particularly by a member of the leadership team, to knock the culture sideways. Maintaining a positive productive culture requires strong accountability by everyone in the organization.
When these leaders were asked how important the culture is to their bottom line results the answers ranged from eight out of ten to its everything.
If you want to win the best places to work award and enjoy the resulting financial performance, ease of attracting and retaining quality team members and just the overall positive environment at these winning companies have then develop the underlying culture necessary to do it and then maintain that culture.