Articles are published yearly listing top companies to work for, with innumerable persons actively inspecting to find the next great place. Erica Anderson, in her article, 2104 Best Companies To Work For: Four Things That Make Them Great, says,

“the more we understand the elements that make a company a great place to work, the more we’ll be able to either make our company more like that or – if that doesn’t seem likely – to find a company to work for that already is like that.”

She details characteristics of greatness as:

  1. Strong positive culture firmly grounded in a meaningful purpose.
  2. Real chances to grow professionally.
  3. The opportunity to work with people you like and respect.
  4. Work that requires you to stretch your brain and skills.

I concur with the ideas expressed and believe they are enduring qualities all business leaders should aspire for the company. I propose in addition to these fine qualities leaders should focus attention on managers within the organization. Relationships that an employee has with their manager can foster loyalty, a happy work environment, or distrust, a culture ready to find the next great thing.

My first career in the 1980’s was a Director of Bands teaching about 300 students a year. I loved the work that I was doing and was sure I was making a difference in the lives of young people. However, the principal I worked for was difficult at best. This principal knowingly or unknowingly established a culture of distrust, lack of respect and support. One could presume this to be an isolated case with me, although the staff turnover rate was high, leading one to look at management.

Companies can provide wonderful benefits and salaries; however, if the employee’s dissatisfaction with the manager is high they will inevitably leave. I have found when a person leaves they are taking away a great investment in training and knowledge that is not easily replaced. Therefore, the next juncture when you promote someone to a role of management, consider qualities other than length of employment with the company or great performances in a singular role. Promoting positive people will have lasting benefits for your organization.


Andersen, Erika. “2104 Best Companies To Work For: Four Things That Make Them Great.”Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 13 Dec. 2013. Web. 13 May 2014.