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4 Tips to Create a Family Friendly Business in 2020

Jun 24, 2020, 09:50 AM
Family Friendly Business Platinum Award

U.S. Eagle has been awarded Platinum level recognition by Family Friendly New Mexico for 2020. New Mexico Family Friendly Business Award recognizes and celebrates New Mexico businesses that have family friendly policies in place, including paid leave, health support, work schedules and economic support.

Here are four tips describing how we proudly implement family friendly policies for our employees.

Tip #1 - Support Innovation & Change

Don’t be afraid to try new processes and test run them with your employees.  Doing so helps maintain a dynamic workplace and improve policies and procedures that impact your workforce.

If there is one thing we’ve learned from the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s that it’s important to continually monitor your culture, rewards, and policies to stay abreast of the needs of your workforce. This situation has proved most employers’ ability to adapt when needed. For example, here are some of the rapid policy changes we made in response to the pandemic:

  • Use of STA (Short Term Absence) and allowing employees to go negative in PTO (Paid Time Off) for a variety of COVID-19 related needs, including caring for school-age children because of the school shutdown.
  • Not including absences attributed to COVID-19 situations in the Credit Union’s attendance procedures.
  • Offering remote work opportunities to staff, whenever possible.
  • Providing a benefit in excess of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) mandate by providing 100% of employee’s regular rate of pay for select situations up to the respective aggregate caps.

Tip #2 - Be Human

Place high importance on ideals like high-quality relationships, trust building, personal and professional growth by simply listening and asking questions.

One size doesn’t fit all for things like clothing and bicycles, so why should work be any different in the workplace? Creating and sustaining a family friendly workplace means nurturing an environment where employees feel valued and heard in exchange for their commitment, and ultimately it means being a ‘more human’ employer.  Some examples of how you can foster a more human environment includes:

  • Hosting an annual or semi-annual all-employee meeting (we hold ours during the workday and make time for a genuine Q&A session).
  • If an employee is ill for a period of time, has experienced a death in their family, etc., U.S. Eagle sends support through flowers and the use  of STA (Short Term Absence) for bereavement or illness in excess of three days.
  • Dedicated lactation rooms
  • Short-term & Long-term Disability insurance that is paid 100% by U.S. Eagle allows for maternity and paternity leave but also for general situations in which an employee is unable to work.

Tip #3 - The Bigger Picture

Talk about your company’s future and goals for the upcoming months or years. This demonstrates that your employees’ hard work is going towards something great.

When employees don’t know where the company is headed, it creates other potential challenges—lack of employee engagement, reduced productivity, poor levels of customer service—to name a few. Here are some considerations to help your employees become part of the bigger picture:

  • Small executive or leadership meetings- open to all levels of employees. Providing lunch or snacks is a bonus. We’ve adapted to having these in a remote meeting setting.
  • Monthly financial performance updates coupled with a summary of how your employees ultimately contributed to those results.
  • Employee Opinion Surveys- make sure to provide feedback even if it takes time to plan a course of action.
  • Is making a difference in your community at the forefront of your mission and values? Empower employees to represent your organization in and out of the office. Forming an internal committee of employees who review and approve funds to non-profits, encouraging employees to submit a request for support of a non-profit, and offering opportunities for employees to volunteer during work hours are just some of the ways U.S. Eagle encourages employees to get involved.

Tip #4 - Say ‘Thank You’

Although it may seem simplistic, this goes a long way. There is a sense of comfort and recognition that is felt when these words are heard. 

Great company culture will make your employees feel excited to be at work, and, as a result, the connection to their workplace will positively impact their work performance. Although there is no doubt that a simple ‘thank you’ can go a long way, here are some examples of how we show additional appreciation for our employees:

  • Birthday card and a small gift card from U.S. Eagle’s President and CEO, Marsha Majors.
  • Providing a PTO plan. Employees must take five consecutive days off to recharge at least once a year.
  • Paid continuing education opportunities.
  • Paid industry subscriptions or dues to professional resources such as online newspaper, industry trade associations or groups.
  • Tuition reimbursement program so employees can further their career with U.S. Eagle.

Your employees spend most of their day at work. Why not make them feel like part of a family while they’re on the clock?

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