great work environment in a recession
4 Companies That Created a Great Work Environment in a Recession
Creating a great work environment in a recession is by no means an easy task, but it is not an impossible one, either. When times are tough for companies and employees alike, it is more important than ever to work on keeping people happy and engaged. Doing so boosts company morale and ensures customers are still receiving the high-quality products and services they have come to expect. The following companies were able to do just that with a bit of innovation and a lot of communication.
McAfee, whom you might recognize because of their popular virus scanning software, focuses on providing plenty of employee incentives to create a great work environment in a recession. Most notably, they use the McAfee Heroes Award Program. Each quarter, the company gives the award to one individual and one team. In order to be considered, the recipients must exceed average performance requirements by providing excellent customer service, demonstrating cost efficiency or otherwise contributing to the overall quality of the company.
Barbara Massa, the Vice President of Global Talent Acquisition, states that monetary compensation is not a necessity for any awards program. In fact, most employees find a great sense of achievement simply in being shown public appreciation for a job well done. The company is also known for providing a sense of community among employees with activities such as potlucks, books clubs and even ice cream socials. The result is a group of people that not only sees themselves as co-workers or as employers and employees, but as friends who are happy to collaborate on projects together.
Baylor Health Care System
Of course, employees who help to create a great work environment in a recession aren’t going to turn down monetary compensation for above average performance, and Baylor Health Care System understands that. The faith-based, nonprofit health care provider offers a pay-per-performance merit process that focuses on goal setting that ties into the company’s retention, quality care, patient satisfaction and financial responsibility objectives.
Specifically, the company rewards their employees with a monthly Service Excellence Award (SEA) in the form of a $100 American Express Gift Card. Baylor Health Care System takes it one step further, too. Each quarter, the top employees receive $2,500 and a luncheon with the company’s CEO. Becky Hall, the company’s Vice President of Talent Acquisition and Retention, notes that thousands of employees receive monthly rewards and more than 100 receive quarterly awards most years. Similar to McAfee, employee picnics and recognition ceremonies are other important components of the work environment at Baylor Health Care System.
Edward Jones, a financial services company that focuses on individual investors, understands that creating a great work environment in a recession depends on input from employees. Company associates have a say in everything from how they train to what their training facilities look like and provide for them. The company recently built several new headquarters, each equipped with top-of-the-line training facilities based on employee input.
Unlike some of the other companies on this list, Edward Jones did find itself in a situation of having to cut costs. Unlike many companies, however, they did not lay anyone off. Instead, they asked employees to come up with their own ideas to save money. According to Tim Steins, the company’s Recruitment Marketing Manager, those who came up with the best cost-saving ideas received tickets to the St. Louis MLB All Star Game. The end result included many happy baseball fans and $120 million in savings for the company.
Apex Systems, a company with ties to the worlds of information technology (IT), finance and accounting, and law and engineering uses their own culture-based values to create a great work environment in a recession. Employee recognition is a main component of the strategy and communication is always open between employees and managers.
The company routinely holds open sessions to get input regarding company practices, employee recognition programs and more. While Apex Systems has no plans to scale back employee recognition awards and programs, Rob Lowry, Executive Vice President, notes that employees seem to be much more interested in providing input and being heard than in winning awards. They appreciate being listened to, which results in better overall performance at work.
Whether you choose company social events, monetary or non-monetary recognition awards, simply listening to your employees or a combination of the above, creating a great work environment in a recession is beneficial for everyone involved. To get more ideas, use the resources available here at Mighty Recruiter.