Sense of purpose pervades workers at top midsizes workplaces
Medium sized Top Workplaces balance between the rock of employees and the hard place of growing
A fast-growing company can be the proverbial curse and blessing. It offers more opportunity. But it can crush the thing that made it successful in the first place.
PorchLight Real Estate Group, which moves up from its ranking as a small Top Workplace in 2015 to the midsize category, seems to have found the sweet spot.
The company, which offers residential real estate services, has grown from 142 employees to 203 in a year, with plans to add 50 employees in 2016.
“You’re always steadying the ship because you need growth to support what you’re doing,” said co-founder and co-CEO Amy Bayer. “At the same time, you want to make sure your culture can withstand the growth. We’re doing more things to help camaraderie, to help people get crystal clear on why we’re doing this.”
According to employees, it’s working. Employees say they’re excited about the direction the company is taking, which earned PorchLight a Special Award in this year’s survey. The growth offers new possibilities for employees.
“The growth is very fun to watch,” an employee wrote. “The company has doubled in size since I started and it has been great to see our impact spread.”
The company’s approach is to provide clients with a consistently high level of service by proving its agents with the proper training, technology and professional support and by making sure they “have a life. Our agents can have high production, provide exceptional service and have a life outside of real estate,” Bayer said. “I don’t want them to work 80 hours a week.”
PorchLight employees praise that philosophy.
“I work for the best company EVER! The management is so creative, energetic, incredibly smart. I have never worked for a company that cares as much about the people working there,” wrote an employee with 45 years of experience.
The company provides 100 percent employer-funded health insurance, paid vacation and sick leave and a 401(k) plan. It employs a wellness coordinator who teaches weekly yoga and boot camp classes that are free to all agents and employees.
PorchLight also sponsors events such as concerts, fitness challenges, blood drives and employee appreciation dinners.
“I work for a company that supports me professionally, personally and emotionally,” an employee wrote.
Rounding out the top five midsize workplaces:
No. 2: Weifield Group Contracting:Wei field Group employees praise the electrical contractor for supporting and challenging them at the same time.
The company does that in part by offering a paid four-year apprenticeship program, paid LEED certification training and paid OSHA training and field safety training.
The company received a Special Award for what the leader of the company does well: “communicating and creating a genuine workplace where people want to strive to be the best,” according to one employee.
“I love the people I work for all the way from the owners (especially the owners) because they really take the time to get to know and help their employees, all the way to the guys that I work with in the field,” wrote another.
The company provides a range of benefits and training for its 228 employees, including 100 percent coverage for health insurance and a 401(k) plan.
It sponsors annual employee awards with cash rewards and paid resort trips.
“I am continually challenged and feel support to do the best I can,” wrote one employee.
Weifield was the first electrical contractor in the region to complete LEED Silver, Gold, Platinum and Net-Zero projects and uses state-of-the-art engineering technology to streamline construction processes and control costs.
No. 3: Halcyon Hospice and Palliative Care: Halcyon Hospice gets high marks for the support and respect it shows its clients and its employees.
“I am able to use my developed (with company support and urging) skills in collaboration with my teams, to provide the best possible care for our patients and families. I love the people I work with and feel a sense of family at my job. I believe we truly provide the best care possible in the hospice environment,” wrote an employee.
Another said: “Hospice is my calling. I have never worked for a company with employees that are so dedicated, kind, supportive and able to work so well as a team for the benefit of our patients and families.”
That support earned Halcyon Hospice a Special Award for the way its managers make it easier for employees to do their jobs well and how they demonstrate that they care about employees’ concerns.
“(My manager) has an open-door policy for suggestions, criticisms, and it is a safe place to voice concerns and difficulties I am having. She encourages me to continue in my education. She is an infectiously positive person who wants to see individual members of her team succeed,” wrote an employee.
“She truly listens, offers constructive feedback and makes sure she checks in with me frequently,” wrote another.
Halcyon provides an employee wellness program as well as paid time off and health insurance for its 162 employees.
No. 4: Renewal by Andersen Colorado: Renewal by Andersen wins praise from its employees for encouraging them to focus on each individual customer by working as a team.
“Everyone is committed and dedicated toward a common goal, truly caring about both the company and the customers we serve,” wrote one employee.
The company, which provides residential replacement windows, has two locations in Colorado.
Employees say they appreciate the flexible hours, the training they need to do their jobs and the people they work with.
“I have been given the chance to work with the best of the best in this field. I have the opportunity to learn and grow from everyone I work with. Unlike other companies, everyone here helps, cheers and supports everyone else,” an employee wrote.
No. 5: ICAT: ICAT is in the catastrophe business, so while the insurer is helping clients put their businesses and homes back together, it also focuses on making sure its employees achieve their own goals. The company provides property insurance to businesses and residential property owners in hurricane and earthquake regions in the U.S.
Employees like the flexible hours, pay, benefits and camaraderie as well as the individual attention they receive.
“As a new employee, I love that everyone is willing to help others and no one ever seems to get annoyed when you ask for their help,” an employee wrote.
“The flexibility to achieve my goals at my pace is very helpful, wrote another. “My manager understands different people’s strengths and weaknesses and encourages growth in both areas while remaining patient and consistent.”
ICAT offers health coverage, annual bonuses, paid personal time off and 401(k) plans. It also offers work from home and flexible schedules.
“I feel that ICAT encourages open communication and really values their employees. I love that they are flexible in working from home and taking time off,” an employee wrote.