Top 10 Takeaways from the 2015 Great Place to Work® Conference

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1. April 22-23, 2015 | Dallas, TX Top 10 Takeaways from the 2015 Great Place to Work Conference 2. On a Mission 1,080 Professionals representing 406 Organizations from 20 Industries with 1 Objective To Build a Better Society by Creating Great Workplaces At this years Great Place to Work Conference, leaders gathered to exchange valuable insights and strategies for building and leveraging a great workplace culture. Leaders who, against a backdrop of high disengagement levels across corporate America, are determined to buck the norm and change the game within their own companies. Presented here are ten key takeaways that surfaced and resurfaced over the two days. Sessions covered the most current practices and perspectives among top leaders of outstanding workplaces, who are consistently achieving greatness through their strong, trust-based company cultures. 3. TAKEAWAY #1: Its Personal, Not Perk-onal 4. The real core of a Great Place to Work are the relationships that people have with each other. Google is a great example of this. Virtually every perk they offer is matched by some one else in Silicon Valley. Whats distinctive about Google is the great relationships they have with employees. Robert Levering, Co-Founder of Great Place to Work 5. TAKEAWAY #2: Your employees are an invaluable source of information. Listen to them. 6. Our nurses could be nurses anywhere. So could all of our other people. So we ask themwe know you love your work. What could we do to make you love it even more? Donna Hyland, President & CEO, Childrens Healthcare of Atlanta 7. TAKEAWAY #3: More than enabling work-life balance, great workplaces actively support employees as whole people. 8. The question is not: How well do we divide our work life and our personal life? The question is: How do we stay whole, as people?This is something that we need to help solve for our employees, as employers. Kevin Cleary, CEO, Clif Bar & Co. 9. Being a great place to work is about great people working, not just about being a workplace where were great when people show up. Work and life are integrated. Theyre not balanced, and its a false equivalency to think that they ever really are. Danroy Henry Sr., Chief Human Resources Officer, Bright Horizons Family Solutions 10. TAKEAWAY #4: Be as transparent as possible. 11. We communicate the good and the bad. We dont hold anything back. You cant spin people in an environment of high trust. We share financial information with our staff; they know our strategic plan, and how they fit into it. Jim Proppe, Group Managing Partner, Plante Moran You have to constantly work to ensure that everyone understands what you understand, and the context for the decisions youve made. When people have the context for the decisions youve made, they may not agree with them, but at least theyll have the information they need to execute against them. Dick Costolo, CEO, Twitter 12. TAKEAWAY #5: Many great workplaces are using HR Analytics to become even better workplaces. 13. SAS uses data in everything we do. Workforce analytics helps us better understand our people - from hiring to engaging to building leaders. Jenn Mann, Vice President, Human Resources, SAS Analytics are another game changer, to make smarter talent decisions. We do all of this work to understand our customers. What about our employees? Jennifer Johnston, Senior Director of #dreamjob Marketing, Communications and Events, 14. TAKEAWAY #6: Inspired products and services come from inspired people. Connect your employees to a sense of purpose at work. 15. Purpose is not incremental to your companys core business. It IS your companys core business. Kevin Cleary, CEO, Clif Bar & Co. The pursuit of excellence hinges on how well we inspire our people, on a deeply personal level, to want to deliver excellence. David M. Gordon, President, The Cheesecake Factory 16. TAKEAWAY #7: Leadership commitment to a strong culture is critical to creating a great workplace. 17. [I spend] a good one-third of my time or more on internal culture building. How is it possible not to? Every child, every employer, every family that we serve is affected every day by a human being that works for Bright Horizons. Ultimately, our reputation, our success, turns on every individual experience we have. David Lissy, CEO, Bright Horizons Family Solutions 18. TAKEAWAY #8: Embracing diversity will serve your culture as well as your business. 19. With 4,000 diverse people across the globe, Im not going to have all of the great ideas. Theyre going to come from all over the company, and the more diverse that group of 4,000 is, the better selection of ideas youre going to have. Dick Costolo, CEO, Twitter 20. TAKEAWAY #9: A strong company culture is a key strategic differentiator. 21. I firmly believe the most leverageable asset we have is our culture. Its our competitive edge. David Lissy, CEO, Bright Horizons Family Solutions Culture is your companys secret sauce. Its what makes you YOU. Francine Katsoudas, Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, Cisco 22. TAKEAWAY #10: People who are building great workplaces are changing the game. 23. Changing the Game The Game Changers are the people who change the way things are done, thought about, or made. You dream the possibilities and run fast into the challenges. You challenge the status quo. You take risks for the sake of making something great happen! You are the optimist in the midst of pessimists. You are persistent among some who might otherwise be complacent. You turn transactional into gift-like; Crazy Town into Whoville. When youre handed lemons, you make Limoncelloor is that just me? Bottom line You make what seems impossible possible. But best of all You give people hope! Youre the game changers! Thank you for making a difference in the world! We at Great Place to Work , applaud you! Marisa Stoltzfus, Consultant, Great Place to Work 24. April 7-8, 2016 |San Diego, CA What was your top takeaway from the Great Place to Work Conference? Tell us at #gptwConf, and dont forget to mark your calendar for 2016!