HomeNewsWhy Would People Want to Work for Your Company?

Why Would People Want to Work for Your Company?

I have said in previous articles and blog posts that people are your most valuable asset. Without them, you do not have a viable functioning company – no matter how buttoned up your systems are and no matter how great your products, services and technology. People are the intrinsic component to any company’s success. So, any business owner or operator must ask a very important question as they build their infrastructure: “What would make people want to work for my company?” While this may seem elementary, how many of us forget?

Regardless of economic conditions – a so-called “buyer’s market” or not, the world is an employee’s oyster, so to speak. Unless they live in a remote region, they have choices – numerous opportunities as to where they can work. Let’s consider not only the seasoned, highly qualified managerial and professional talent, but also the entry-level or perhaps the semi-skilled worker. If you are in that category, what motivates you to choose one company’s offer over the other?

The world has changed. The current generation of workers has different values, preferences and motivators than the previous generation. Today’s workforce wants to be valued, acknowledged for its contribution, and rewarded in ways that match their personal lifestyles.

Numerous studies over recent years have indicated that workers – especially those at the entry level – want opportunities for advancement. They want recognition. They want flexible work schedules. They gravitate to companies with principles and values that match their own. Culture is not an abstract; it’s a very tangible thing that business leaders have the ability to create and infuse throughout their organization. It’s what you stand for.

A new Pew Research Center survey finds that “low pay, a lack of opportunities for advancement and feeling disrespected at work are the top reasons why Americans quit their jobs last year.” The survey also finds that “those who quit and are now employed elsewhere are more likely than not to say their current job has better pay, more opportunities for advancement and more work-life balance and flexibility.”

According to the study, the majority of workers who quit a job last year said, “low pay (63%), no opportunities for advancement (63%) and feeling disrespected at work (57%) were reasons why they quit.”  Participants also said that childcare issues, a lack of flexibility to choose their working schedule, and inadequate benefits (health insurance and PTO) were significant reasons for leaving an employer.

Employees seek those sometimes small incentives and rewards that are very individual to them. It could be an extra day off, a gym membership, a year-end or quarterly bonus for meeting or exceeding a company goal. One size does not fit all. When a company’s management relates to a worker as an individual and rewards him or her with something they value personally, it speaks volumes.

How do you become that welcoming company that flashes a beacon? Considering that your workers themselves are your best asset; they are also your best spokesperson. We have found that one of the most successful recruiting tools has been our own staff. They reach out to people they know and invite them to apply to work for us. It carries the weight of an explicit endorsement.

Have a public face. Engage in an active publicity campaign – not only around your products and services, but around your employment practices. Keep a high profile within your local community. Entry-level and semi-skilled lower paid employees are not likely to travel far or to relocate for a job. If they see that your company invests in and supports charitable causes in their own community as well as civic engagement, they will develop trust in your company.

Make sure that your management also becomes and remains visible in the community. They should appear as the public face for your company. When prospective employees see them interacting with the community, that will engender confidence that these are people they would want to spend their day with. Employees become loyal when employers show loyalty to them. Promoting from within encourages people to remain on board.

Become the alternative – the alternative to those competing for that entry-level and lower paid employee. Actively promote in both traditional and social media what differentiates you from the more commonplace jobs available to these people. What makes your company stand out?  What is the unique employment proposition?  Regardless of your company’s industry, clearly define how your workplace treats its staff better. Invest in your workplace to make it an attractive place to work. We invested in thermal windows, a new modern HVAC system and bright lighting to make the shop area more comfortable to work in, for example.

Don’t forget that your employees function as a team. Foster team pride and interaction with a periodic catered lunch, an offsite picnic or a softball team. It will pay off. The higher the quality of your workforce, the higher the quality of your output – and more customer retention which leads to more profitability.

It’s straightforward: A happy workforce makes for a happy, successful company.


  • Paul K. Steck

    Paul K. Steck is president of Exothermic Molding, Inc. in Kenilworth, N.J., a contract manufacturer of plastic parts for high-tech devices in a variety of industries. Visit exothermic.com/careers.

Get our newsletter and digital focus reports

Stay current on learning and development trends, best practices, research, new products and technologies, case studies and much more.

Paul K. Steck
Paul K. Steckhttps://exothermic.com/careers.
Paul K. Steck is president of Exothermic Molding, Inc. in Kenilworth, N.J., a contract manufacturer of plastic parts for high-tech devices in a variety of industries. Visit exothermic.com/careers.

Online Partners