Last Friday was a very big day for Telerik, but as I was on the plane I couldn’t blog about it immediately. I am very excited to share that we received the 2007 award for best employer in the “Small and Medium Business” category in Bulgaria. The study is conducted by Hewitt Associates, the world's largest provider of multi-service HR business process outsourcing (BPO), and surveyed over 13,000 professionals from 70 of the leading companies and MNCs operating in Bulgaria.
A few months ago, when we decided to participate, our goal was pretty simple – to see what are the problem areas and check if our people are happy with their jobs. While anyone with a competitive spirit always hopes to do well in any competition, we didn’t think about winning. We needed a reality check – are we doing a good job, and if not, what do we need to improve.
When your team grows rapidly, you need to make sure that growth does not negatively impact your greatest asset – the people. Needless to say, when Hewitt told us that we had won I felt unbelievable excitement. While we’ve won a few dozen product awards and a number of other awards such as the Deloitte Rising Star Award, the “Best Employer” award is very special and is the most prized accomplishment as it does not come from some “independent” authority – it comes from the Telerik team. The Hewitt study measures employee engagement, satisfaction and the company’s HR systems. We scored high on all counts, much higher than the average for the industry.
Apart from the glory of the #1 spot, the study was very important for a number of reasons:
1. The results showed us the areas where we need to improve. Not that most of them were surprising, but it was great to have re-affirmation. Now that we’ve won the #1 spot, it’s an even greater responsibility for Telerik’s management to work on all problem areas so that everyone on the team feels even greater job satisfaction.
2. Our efforts to create a different workplace and a different corporate culture have been noticed and are appreciated by our team. There’s nothing more precious than a productive, positive and creative environment where people feel good about their work and are not afraid to drive change. When you have such an environment, good results come naturally.
3. The results of the study show alignment between management’s, mid-management’s and employees’ goals and actions. This gave everyone even more confidence that Telerik customers are in good hands – there is a whole organization that loves their jobs, loves the people around them and understands the company’s core ideals.
That said, I understand that winning the #1 spot is perhaps easier than keeping it. It will be quite a challenge for us to keep the same corporate culture as our team continues to grow rapidly, processes change, bureaucracy creeps in and the whole organization morphs.
I am sure, though, that with the brains in the company we will overcome challenges and pass on to new people not only knowledge but also the caring attitude towards out most important constituencies – customers and other team members. Hopefully, the end result will be an even better workplace and stronger company where complacency was and never will be an option. Customers have still not seen the best of us.