Working for a company that strives to put its people first is truly a dream come true. A lot of well-known companies have “People” built into their foundations. Just take a look at a few quotes from their mission statements/core values:

“People are the heart of our business…”

“We respect our employees and value their contributions…”

“We treat our employees… with professionalism, dignity and respect, fostering an environment where people can contribute, innovate and excel…”

Why is it that these day’s companies who put their people first are the exception to the rule? Unfortunately the concept of staying with the same employer throughout your career died in the 90’s. For the first time, international competition carved out a niche in the American job market. In response, companies abandoned long-term strategies in favor of quick profit plans to stay competitive. Labor costs were high, so corporations uprooted their employees from being part of the family and made them an overhead expense.

When people became an overhead expense, management became reluctant to budget any more time and money than necessary into their people. Development programs ceased; loyalty and engagement became lost relics. Companies assumed people would jump ship at the chance for something new and exciting. There was no sense in risking the waste of a lost investment.

So why? Why do some companies still embrace their people?

Because they know: people are their best assets.

Customer loyalty is built on customer service. Products and services are made and delivered by employees, not by 30-second TV ads. For employees to deliver, companies need to invest in them. They need to foster the notion that every idea deserves attention, work is meaningful, and creativity and innovation are good things! People respond to appreciation. It’s time to unleash their potential!

The best performing employees are often the most engaged employees. Recently, many companies have caught wind of this. Corporate recognition and employee engagement articles have increased. However, despite efforts, engagement is still very low. So if you are reading this and working in a company that is truly putting you first, embrace it. Soak it in and enjoy it! If you are reading this and are a person who is in a position to enact change in your corporate culture, step up and do it! Hopefully, with an upward trend in embracing people, all companies will reclaim that bit of old-fashion value of working as a family.

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