What matters most to employees?

Credit: Hyosub Shin

Credit: Hyosub Shin

By Doug Claffey

CEO of WorkplaceDynamics

The 2015 Top Workplaces in Atlanta show great diversity in size and sector and this year we are proud to announce there are 150 of them! There’s hospital, WellStar Health System, with more than 13,000 employees, and Miles Advisory Group, with 50. What common thread winds through these 150 Top Workplaces?

It’s not the perks, though there are many great perks represented in the Top 150, such as Abacus Solutions LLC, who provides a catered lunch each year for employees to watch the NCAA Tournament’s opening round. Our research of employee feedback concludes the common thread is having a healthy organization.

Workplace connections

That begs the question, what is a healthy organization and what role do people play in it? Healthy organizations thrive on people who feel connected to their workplace through meaningful work and the belief their company is moving in the right direction. That gives executive leadership the task of ensuring their employees buy in to where the company is going and how it is getting there. Executives are challenged to create a sense of connection between company and employee.

Think about where you work or volunteer your time. Do you buy in to where the organization is heading and how it is getting there? Do you feel a connection?

Employees among The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Top Workplaces buy in to where they’re going and how they are getting there. So much so, they are not afraid to use the “L-word” when it comes to their jobs — “I love my job.” For example, an employee at 22squared commented: “The company is growth focused, has an exciting pace, the people are brilliant, and the culture is great.”

Organizational health

In eight years of research with millions of workers across the United States, WorkplaceDynamics has determined more money or perks do not account for the difference between an average or poor workplace. Employees want to work at a place that is organizationally healthy.

By promoting organizational health, employees, leadership and investors are aligned. Employees want high levels of organizational health because it enriches their working life. Investors want high levels of organizational health because it makes their companies more successful. Good leaders want to serve both groups. And when more employees are fulfilled and more organizations are successful, communities benefit.