The Secret to Being a Great Place to Work is the Culture
By Leigh Branham Founder & Principal, Keeping the People, Inc. | June 12, 2011
Remarkably, two hospitality companies were named among the ten Best Places to Work out of more than 2,000 that applied in competitions sponsored by business journals in 44 states throughout the U.S. Winners were determined by employees completing a 37-question employee engagement survey administered through third-party data collector, Quantum Workplace of Omaha, Nebraska.
The two winning employers - Joie de Vivre Hospitality, which achieved the highest score on valuing employees, and Gaylord Hotels and Resorts, which tied for highest score on senior leadership, are very different businesses, but strikingly similar in their workplace cultures.
How Valuing Employees Makes a Difference at Joie de Vivre Hospitality
Started in San Francisco in 1987 by Chip Conley, Joie de Vivre Hospitality built a reputation for creating a unique collection of lifestyle businesses, now with annual revenues of $225 million per year. Joie de Vivre Hospitality is the parent company of Joie de Vivre Hotels and oversees all the other businesses beyond its 38 boutique hotels, including restaurants, spas, and affiliate hotels. JDV is expanding outside of California with its first project in Scottsdale, Az. and another soon to be announced in the Midwest.
Founder and Co-Chairman, Conley is determined to sustain an empowering business culture in spite of rapid growth. "Most companies lose their culture as they grow," he says, "but what Southwest Airlines taught us is that it's all about empowering employees at the lowest level of the company as much as possible."
Here are a few telling aspects of JDV's culture: