Naples, Fla. — Good communication, an open-book policy, and being truthful and sincere are important factors in keeping employees, according to members of a panel from plastics companies that have been named to the list of Best Places to Work.
"When you think about what motivates your employees — why do they show up every day — it's really about what engages them," said Judy Wierman, human resources director of KI Industries Inc. of Berkeley, Ill. "It's really about what motivates, engages them. It's being intentional. It's talking to your people. It's listening. It's communication. It's understanding why they like coming to work and why they stay, and offering more of that."
The Best Places to Work awards, managed by research firm Best Cos. Group of Harrisburg, Pa., uses input from employee satisfaction surveys and management questionnaires. The panel was part of the Plastics News Executive Forum in Naples.
Norm Forest, CEO of Dymotek Corp. of Ellington, Conn., wants to maintain a personal relationship with his 100-plus employees, and that includes sharing business information.
"A great service for companies is to share everything with the folks on your team. By doing that, there's a sense of mutual respect that, quite honestly, it empowers them," Forest said. "It gives them the opportunity to be an owner, and quite frankly, I want to surround myself with owners."
Dymotek won the 2016 Plastics News Processor of the Year Award.
Wierman said KI Industries is a worker-owned company under an employee stock ownership plan. An ESOP allows for great employee communication and feedback, she said.
As a result, the company has instituted flexible work schedules and offers a choice of different levels of benefits, such as a less expensive "employee only" health benefit option.