Editor’s Note: Good for the Bottom Line

April, 2008

It sounds crazy, at first. A massage chair? Paying 75 percent of the private school tuition for an employee’s kid? Watching the latest in feng shui advice on the employee channel? These are just some of the behaviors and perks at the 69 Best Places to Work in Hawaii. The point is — it’s not just silly touchy-feely stuff. Being a great place to work results in effective employees, who produce bottom line results.

A study by Watson Wyatt shows that there are four attributes of what the consulting firm calls “effective” employees: 1) Commitment, where employees are motivated to help an organization succeed; 2) Line of Sight, where employees know what to do to make an organization successful; 3) Enablement, where employees have the training, resources, tools and equipment to do their jobs and 4) Integrity, where employees understand and live up to their organization’s values and expect the same from coworkers.

According to Watson Wyatt’s WorkUSA 2006/2007 survey, companies with employees that rate high in all four areas show an average total return to shareholders that is almost three times higher than that of a typical firm. The typical firms’ average total return to shareholders was 12 percent, while the companies with high employee effectiveness had an average of 33 percent total return to shareholders.

No question that we should create companies with effective employees. How to improve employee effectiveness is the big conundrum. In other words, what does your company need to do for its employees in order to increase its return to its shareholders? Luckily, you hold some of the best examples of how to do this in your hands, 69 to be exact. 

While it might not be the massage chair, the private-school tuition assistance or the in-house employee channel that ends up doing the trick, there’s bound to be a combination here that works for you and your place of work. So, don’t delay. Turn to page 31 to start unlocking those secrets. Congratulations to the 2008 Best Places to Work in Hawaii. We trust we’ll see even more companies on our list next year and we hope your company is right up there with the best of them.

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Kelli Abe Trifonovitch