Recently I attended the Best Companies to Work for in Colorado event. This 2012 awards banquet celebrated the top 30 companies in Colorado ranked by their employees as the best in the state. This celebration of excellence left me questioning, “what are the characteristics of a company that attracts the best talent and ensures they stay at the company?”

workplace-funFor job seekers, the top 8 qualities employers desired most from workers was recently reported by OI Partners. Let’s flip the card – The Top 8 Qualities Employees Desire Most from Their Company:

  1. Communication and Responsive Leadership – Colorado companies Return Path Inc and Accurence credit communication as one of the key success factors in their organization. They offer weekly updates from the executive team, newsletters, bi-weekly management meetings and monthly all-employee gatherings with time for Q&A. Employees want to feel “in on things.”
  2. Corporate Responsibility and Philanthropy – Every organization that was recognized at the event acknowledged their corporate responsibility to the community in which they do business. ReadyTalk matches all employee donations to charitable organizations up to $500.00 a year. Insperity allows each employee 12 hours of paid time, per quarter, to volunteer in their local community.
  3. Continuing Education for Employees and Their ChildrenHospice & Palliative Care of Western Colorado provides up to $1,000 per year tuition reimbursement to their employees. Encompass Home Health offers a Young Scholars program which assists the dependents of their employees with undergraduate tuition.
  4. Flexible Work Environment – A flexible work environment is defined in many ways.  Rally Software offers a work-from-home option. CoBank allows their employees to “work it out” with their supervisor on what time they will start their day – as early as 6:30 or as late as 8:30 to drop those kids off at daycare. All the best companies provide a “flexible” work environment.
  5. Social Activities Featuring WellnessR.A. Nelson and Associates offers spring barbeques and family picnics. Many of the best companies’ teambuilding activities now include off-site rafting trips, inter-company golf tournaments. Some companies, like Anton Collins Mitchell LLP, offer time during work hours to visit the gym with co-workers while paying part of or all of the membership fees.
  6. Food, Food and More Food – Food is a key ingredient in the best companies to work for in Colorado. Crestone Capital Advisors LLC has a kitchen fully stocked and Costco delivers to their office. Black Creek Group and Dividend Capital Group caters lunch once per week to thank employees for their hard work.
  7. Profit SharingPaid for PerformanceThe Progressive Group of Insurance Companies gives all employees the opportunity to earn more than the market will bear by providing bonuses based on the company’s growth and profitability. DaVita’s profit-sharing program pays an average of $100 million each year to its teammates.
  8. Leadership and Management DevelopmentQuest Diagnostics provides a development plan for every employee. Anton Collins Mitchell LLP aims for every employee to be part of a coaching/mentoring program to assist in career development, guidance and support. A full 4-day new management program and high-potential leadership program for senior employees at PCL Construction makes them a Best Company to Work for in Colorado.

Employers looking to be the “employer of choice” should take a few notes from these top 8 qualities of the Best Companies to Work for in Colorado.

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