Employers and managers can support kind and mindful actions in the workplace.
Local Businesses Showing Kindness to Their Employees
This Eugene investment company touts its child- and pet-friendly credentials. New parents can bring their infants to work until they are 6 months old. Any employee can bring their dog to the office. Staffers can earn extra PTO for participating in wellness challenges. “Everyone is encouraged to voice their opinions.”
“Every day at IDX we strive to be better than we were the day before,” says IDX’s Celeste Marshall. “We aren’t all work and no play. Not by any means. To keep team morale high, we offer catered meals each week, video games in the employee lounge, and company-issued Nerf guns for the most epic office battles in the great state of Oregon,” Marshall says.
IDX recently renovated the former Oak Street Speakeasy into a 3,800 square-foot modern employee lounge. “Our employees use this space to chill out, grab a snack, work remotely, and collaborate with other employees,” says Marshall.
The heart of our company is our employees. We offer unparalleled profit sharing packages and only promote managers from within. It’s no wonder our people stay with us for decades.
Sabrina Parsons, CEO of Palo Alto Software, has been working with the company since 2003. In 2007 she stepped into her role as CEO, and since then has focused on improving the work/home-life balance of her employees. Additionally, Sabrina has taken steps to provide a kid-friendly work environment. If employees can’t find a babysitter, have last minute changes to their schedules, or are concerned about where their kids can go for the day, Palo Alto is an option. As long as they’re supervised, employees’ children are welcome to come in and do things like work on homework, color, or read a book.
Local Businesses Showing Kindness to the Community
CBT Nuggets’ charitable giving arm, NuggetLove, partners with organizations that create self-sustaining communities. That means they do more than just address basic human needs like water, shelter, and sanitation. They also educate people, encourage entrepreneurship, and help stimulate local economies.
“Once we find them, we provide targeted financial support and consulting. All strategically focused to help them grow, amplify their impact, and become sustainable themselves.”
CBT Nugget also provides free training to some workers displaced due to restructuring.
Lane County’s public school districts, tech companies, the industry group Technology Association of Oregon and others have come together to launch a countywide program to immerse Lane County high school students and educators in Eugene-Springfield’s growing tech scene.
Essex General Construction of Eugene was named the 2016 Bold Steps Award winner by Mayor Kitty Piercy. The award recognizes environmentally responsible companies that also treat employees well and are financially successful.
The firm has had a scholarship since 2002 that helps employees meet the cost of postsecondary education for themselves and their children.
Essex donates extra construction materials to BRING Recycling and Habitat for Humanity. Essex also built two tiny homes in the Emerald Village community, a micro-housing development in Eugene’s Whiteaker neighborhood for homeless people.
Fall Creek Farm & Nursery surprised 12 children who attend the YMCA/Eugene 4-J BEST program at Howard Elementary School with new bicycles. The bicycles were assembled by company employees during a team building exercise. Unbeknownst to the employees, the bicycles were going to be given to kids who attend the afterschool-care program for kids from low-income families.
Each bike came with a helmet and lock. Each bike-building team received a hand-written “thank you” card from the child who received the bike. Fall Creek is a Eugene-based company that breeds blueberry varieties.
Forrest has given to countless organizations and focuses especially on programs that provide support to kids and families, the arts, and affordable housing and homelessness.
Forrest is also a leader in finding innovative solutions to lessen the environmental impact of their processes and products.
Kevin Cohen Plumbing gives back to many charities, including: MDA, Kiteboarding for Cancer, March of Dimes, Children’s Miracle Network, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Veterans Housing Project, Hop to Hop, and many more!
McKenzie Commercial teamed up with Nir Pearlson Architect as a major donor to build a tiny house for Emerald Village, a community developed by Square One Villages for homeless people.
The Reality Kitchen flagship pretzel cart was in great need of multiple upgrades in order to make it fully functional. That’s when Todd Glenz, President of McKenzie Commercial stepped in to lend a hand. Jim Evangelista of Reality Kitchen reached out to Todd to see how he could help. This created an inspiring opportunity for the community to pull together. Todd enlisted several subcontractors to help complete the many necessary upgrades.
Sladden Park, a 4-acre park in the Whiteaker neighborhood, got a backboard upgrade after McKenzie Commercial Owner, Todd Glenz, noticed the backboard was in need of replacement. Their employees and family members tackled the task along with other voluntters.
McKenzie Commercial has been named in the top 100 Best Green Workplaces in Oregon multiple times.
Mountain Rose Herbs offers each of its employees three full paid days each year to volunteer in the community. This amounts to a total of 24 hours of paid time for each employee annually.
“Our Beer is Love program gives beer to nonprofits in super creative ways. Basically, if we think our beer can benefit a nonprofit, we give it away. And Beer is Love gets Ninkasi volunteers out in the community volunteering. Not just in Eugene, but in all of our markets,” Weigandt says, “We have many benefits available to keep our employees happy and healthy, like free beer and merchandise, great benefits, profit sharing, a wellness program, an amazing office space, and paid work time to volunteer in the community.
“We were honored to receive the 2017 Community Spirit Award from the Bethel Education Foundation at their annual breakfast on October 13, 2017. Although we were excited to win the award, we are 10 times more excited to see how much is being accomplished for the kids by this foundation. Things like outdoor school, tools for special needs teachers, science materials, and field trips get funded so our kids can learn about the world around them. We are so thankful that foundations like BEF exist!”
The PacificSource Foundation for Health Improvement provides resources and funds for the health and welfare of underserved and vulnerable populations, with an emphasis on children and youth.
They assist non-profit organizations working to improve health status and meet the healthcare needs in the communities PacificSource Health Plans serves. They also support organizations and initiatives aligned with providing access to high quality healthcare, improving community health and lowering costs across the system.
Papa’s Pizza stays highly involved in the community through our fundraiser nights, gift certificate sales and school scrip programs. It is our commitment to support the community with fundraisers for non-profit organizations, schools, churches and those with medical needs.
In December 2018, PenFed Credit Union’s Eugene Service Center announced charitable donations totaling $25,000 to Burrito Brigade, Eugene Mission, Veterans Legacy, and St. Vincent de Paul Society of Lane County’s Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) and Egan Warming Center Programs. PenFed employees and leadership met with each of the organizations and presented them with checks.
These donations were part of PenFed’s commitment to giving $100,000 to nonprofit organizations in the Eugene area in 2018. Each quarter, PenFed’s Eugene Service Center employees selected local charities that aligned with the credit union’s core values of giving back and making a difference in the communities PenFed serves.
Volunteer Efforts: Roseburg employees volunteer for organizations such as Relay for Life, Habitat for Humanity and Red Cross. Our executives serve on boards and advisory committees. Roseburg makes countless corporate gifts to support organizations that embody our own purpose of “Making Lives Better from the Ground Up.”
Donating Resources: We frequently provide wood products to support organizations and communities in need. Whether it’s timber for new bleachers at a local high school, or engineered wood for raised garden beds for an elementary school class, we enjoy using our resources to benefit others.
SUB’s WELL (Water and Electricity Learning Lab) Project helps train new scientists every day. This award-winning grant program provides a comprehensive, hands-on curriculum that teaches water quality and electricity principles to grade school and high school students throughout Springfield. It also provides funding necessary to help purchase supplies and materials for the administration of the curriculum.
Programs include water science curriculum materials, electric circuit kits, solar energy kits, a community water testing lab and activities and materials aimed at instilling a love of science in the next generation.
Evidence-Based Workplace Practices
Peer-To-Peer Recognition Program
Employees could nominate a coworker for exemplary work or effort. These nominations proved to increase engagement and retention at JetBlue.
An evidence-based business case as to why fostering and maintaining a respectful workplace is important, as well as highlights the negative impacts when incivility is allowed to fester without intervention.
Boosting Mindfulness at Work
Companies that realize and invest in the connection between employee health and business goals have a competitive advantage: the same factors that contribute to employee happiness and engagement have been linked to increased productivity.
Business Leadership – Likability and Effectiveness
Likable leaders are effective leaders. Many people assume that it’s possible for a person to be an effective leader without being likeable. However, research shows that very few people who are unlikeable can be effective leaders.
Researchers evaluated prosocial (intended to be given away) bonuses and how they incentivized employees potentially leading to increased job satisfaction and well-being.