Hawaii Needs Your Best

April, 2006

Congratulations to all of the 2006 Best Places to Work winners for leading the way in our state. We are happy to announce that we expect even greater participation in this important program next year, when it will be FREE to participate. Employees will still be surveyed for their all-important input. Companies may still choose to purchase their in-depth company findings. More information on the 2007 program will eventually be found on this site. If your company is not among this year’s winners, our unscientific test will give you some insights into how to fix that.

There are some strong connections between stories in this issue, all focused on how we can make Hawaii a better place in which to live and work. While Associate Editor Scott Radway gives us a roadmap to what it takes to be a Best Place to Work, Editor-at-Large David K. Choo outlines the pent up demand for good jobs that will also put roofs over the heads of Hawaii’s 20-to-30-somethings and food on their tables. The sad part is that many young folks here are in a financial hole because of the costs of the higher education they’ve sought to make life easier.

One hallmark of a great place to work is the commitment to do right and do well by a company’s employees. Two Hawaii companies and a school, which together employ about 5,500 people here are going about this in an extremely businesslike way, because they believe they will end up lowering their employee health costs, as well. Under the banner of the Hawaii Business Health Council (HBHC), Times Supermarket, Outrigger Hotels and Resort and Punahou School have launched a pilot program here, which is modeled on the Asheville Project, an employee wellness program that utilizes specially trained pharmacists as counselors. The program is generating interest and we may soon see the entry of some major public employee groups and a large drugstore chain.

On the start-up front, the ChipIn guys are still at it and reveal some of the uncomfortable issues they are confronting, such as a possible change in a founder’s status. You have to give the ChipIn crew credit for their moxie and we are looking forward to future “Anatomy of a Startup” installments from Managing Editor Jacy L. Youn. ChipIn has the potential to be huge, but they’ve got to start small like everyone else. If you know of small business with a noteworthy success story, please file a nomination. We want to honor the best.


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Kelli Abe Trifonovitch