When employee morale was down at Rockford, Ill.-based Industrial Molds Inc. and its Pyramid Plastics Inc. division, Vice President Tim Peterson said it made a big change: Workers who come in every day and clock in on time are publicly recognized and rewarded with $10 every month. Employees with perfect attendance for the quarter also receive a paid vacation day.
"Attendance went from 40-50 percent perfect attendance to 80-90 percent," Peterson said. "Intuitively, you would say, 'Yes, [the incentive program] does make a difference.' I don't know whether it's the $10 or it's the recognition part that makes the difference."
In addition to that, employees at the toolmaking company who exhibit exceptional work ethic and behavior are recognized by managers and given $25.
According to the Industrial Molds website, Peterson "likes to jokingly say that the reason his father, Jack Peterson, started Industrial Molds was so that his six sons would have a place to work."
The company, which claims it specializes in "all facets of injection mold manufacturing, including design, engineering, tooling and special machining services," celebrates 50 years in the business this year. To commemorate the event, Industrial Molds will hold an open house over the summer.
"It truly is a testament to the guys who are still here and the processes that they have developed over the years for the automation and all that kinds of things that enable us to be here for 50 years," he said. "It's a celebration. … As you know, the market is not the same as it was 50 years ago when my dad started it, but it's a testament to the guys and gals who have adapted over the years and figured out how to be in the business in the new market. We're looking forward to celebrating and saying 'thank you' to the employees."
Peterson said he believes the nearly 55 employees on staff enjoy the team-centric environment and collaborative atmosphere at Industrial Molds. Pride, passion and precision are the three core values displayed on the company website.
"You're working with your friends," he said. "It's trying to accomplish something with good guys who all have the same goals in mind."
Industrial Molds employees are involved in everything from sponsoring the local robotics club to donating to Samaritan's Purse, an evangelical Christian humanitarian aid organization, to working with iWarriors, which provides iPads to wounded warriors from the U.S. Armed Forces, and supporting Rockford Rescue Mission, which serves the homeless community.