LinkedIn recently released its list of the top 50 large companies most in demand with job seekers. Rankings were based on a rubric that included job demand, engagement with the company, interest in existing employees, and retention. ThinkHR founder and CEO Pete Yozzo explores what the most sought-after companies of any size have in common.
When you look at the LinkedIn list — and consider most companies with happy employees — there are four main things they have in common. First and foremost, they are grounded by a specific set of values, and they continue to stay focused on those values. Next, they take pride in an environment where everyone keeps learning and developing, day after day. They also communicate well so everyone knows what’s going on, why they are there, what they need to do to be successful in their jobs, and what they are getting out of work besides compensation. Finally, and this is fairly recent, they are aware of what is going on in the world outside of their business, and understand they have an obligation to give back.
Here’s what makes these my top priorities for companies people are clamoring to be a part of:
I can’t stress enough how important it is to determine your company values. Make them immovable objects, because as you scale your business, strategies will change, but your values should always remain the same. That consistency creates an environment where people will come and stay.
For example, at ThinkHR we work hard at strategies to reinforce our values and expectations. We continue to define them: #love, #passion, and #innovation. We concentrate on values that make us solid people. For example, while we focus on “showing the love” to our customers and internal team members in every interaction, a core part of our love value is to be humble and give credit to others. We work at embodying our values; people like that, it makes them proud, and it makes ThinkHR a great place to work.
The best companies to work for provide environments where people feel like they never stop learning. A commitment to providing development opportunities is an unspoken covenant between employer and employee, and the best companies do a great job of thinking about what each employee is learning and how they are growing in their individual career paths. That kind of thing helps them trust that their employer cares about them and their careers, which makes them feel more satisfied in their jobs.
Communication at every level is key to the success and satisfaction of employees. From the top down, everyone in the company should understand the business goals, strategies, and structure, and how their work contributes to the overall success of the business. Everyone should be kept abreast of progress and changes as they happen. Employees should also have ample opportunities to communicate their ideas and concerns to management, and to keep in close contact with their teammates.
Also not to be overlooked is the importance of putting into place ways for employees to publicly recognize each other’s contributions; to give and receive pats on the back. Reinforcement goes a very long way toward engagement and satisfaction, and a communication-based structure for sharing this is ideal.
A fairly recent business trend seems to be around creating awareness that there is more going on in your community, or even globally, besides your business. Millennials especially want to know their place in the world and see how their job fits in with that. It speaks to the way they think. This includes a commitment to diversity and inclusivity, being more aware of what’s going on in the world, plus finding ways your company can do good.
Some of the best companies are already doing this well. For example, at Salesforce (#4 on the list), most new employees spend their first day of employment volunteering at a local kitchen, church, or shelter. That’s a good thing. If you can find your company’s place in the greater worldview, it will create even more satisfaction within your walls.