What makes a New Orleans business a Top Workplace?
A look back at past winners.
For the past two years, we’ve asked for nominations from the Greater New Orleans community to help us locate and honor the area’s best places to work. As we enter our third year, we’d like to reflect on some of the things we’ve learned about what employees in New Orleans value in a workplace.
We know what employees value because our partner, Workplace Dynamics, collects detailed insights in an employee survey of every company we award at Top Workplaces. These surveys determine if a company has what it takes to be included in our hall of fame, and they also shed light on the priorities of the people who work there.
Employee surveys ask 22 questions covering seven major factors, such as pay and benefits, organizational health, and company engagement with employee goals, motivation and retention. The answers to these questions reveal insights that help companies gain a deeper understanding of their organizational strengths and weaknesses, as well as allowing them to “check the pulse” on employee satisfaction and engagement.
Here are the top factors that employees at our Top Workplaces said set their company apart from the competition:
- Open door policy, responsive management and conflict resolution
AccuTrans, a Kenner company recognized as a Top Workplace in the small employers division for the past two years, achieves a vibrant company culture through outstanding conflict resolution.
In addition to creating a familiar, tight-knit atmosphere with crawfish boils and barbecues, AccuTrans also has a strong grasp of responsive management in difficult situations. Its supervisors and managers are handpicked for traits they possess, such as being solution-oriented, selfless and motivated to resolve employee concerns.
This management approach and AccuTrans’ commitment to employee workplace satisfaction earned it a spot among our recognized companies at Top Workplaces 2016.
- Investing in employee growth
Another Top Workplace honoree, Lafayette-based IberiaBank, offers a similar culture of celebrating and rewarding employees with snowball Wednesdays and Carnival watch parties. But in addition to perks, IberiaBank also prioritizes employee recognition and development.
Identifying and investing in employees who wish to grow within the company has mirrored the company’s own growth – IberiaBank has roughly doubled its assets between 2010 and 2015. As it makes acquisitions in new markets, the company prioritizes keeping the employees at those acquisitions to maintain consistency in customer relationships. IberiaBank’s market-based company leadership structure ensures that employee input in each market is valued and incorporated into business decisions.
- A family approach – even in our largest winning companies
At Creole Cuisine Restaurant Concepts, family comes first – even when the “family” is several hundred members large. From humble beginnings with one daiquiri shop in the French Quarter to holdings that include eight casual restaurants, five fine dining restaurants, and five daiquiri cafes, Creole Cuisine has maintained its commitment to family.
Creole Cuisine’s dedication to mutual respect and building trust among its employees earned it the winning spot among the large businesses division of our Top Workplaces 2016 honorees. A strong emphasis on recruiting for management from within also boosts Creole Cuisine’s employee retention, as the path to upward mobility is clear and consistent.
- The perks
The workplaces in New Orleans that shine brightest demonstrate their understanding of the changing values and priorities of today’s workforce with perks. These perks reflect a deeper understanding of their employees that goes beyond competitive pay and benefits.
One of the priorities that Top Workplaces accommodate is the need for flexibility. They accomplish this through programs like “Flex Fridays” at Eagan Insurance Agency, where employees are able to take every other Friday off. At Eustis Insurance and Benefits, employees can choose to take off Mondays or Fridays every other week.
Wellness programs benefit both employees and companies, who often contribute to their healthcare costs. Some of these perks include rewards for healthy living that can be redeemed to pay for other healthy lifestyle choices, such as a gym membership. Personal counseling services and informal company-wide activities that combine fun and stress relief also contribute to these healthier, happier workplaces.
Rounding out the list of perks is a shared commitment to providing professional development and investment in employees, as well as soliciting frequent feedback and dialogue from employees at every level.
- The values
As part of the employee survey, Top Workplace employees are asked to rank a series of statements on their importance to the quality of their company.
All of the top 10 ranked statements communicate a deep understanding of company values, consistency in management’s expression of those values, and a corresponding feeling of fulfillment among employees. The top three ranked statements in our 2016 survey express that employees are confident in the direction of their companies, company leadership and that they are a valued asset to their company.
Other highly ranked statements include affirmations that communication within the workplace is strong, that senior management has a good handle on the direction of the company and regularly exemplifies company values.
Clearly, our Top Workplaces in New Orleans stand out from the rest by putting employees first. Does any of this remind you of your company? Click here to nominate your workplace for Top Workplaces.