13 Characteristics of the Best Companies

 In Business Success, Leadership, Leadership Development, management, Organizational Change
The best companies have great workplace cultures.  Aristotle wrote, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence is not an act but a habit.” He was referring to people, but this is true for organizations as well. The culture defines the quality of a company’s mission, approach to business, and the working relationships to get things done. The best companies tend to achieve great results like:
  • Lower employee turnover and higher loyalty and employee engagement.
  • Superior customer service or high-quality products or, ideally, both.
  • Enviable and sustainable sales growth.
  • Good profits.
  • On-going sustainable growth

What are the Characteristics of the Best Companies?

13 Characteristics of the Best CompaniesOver the years RCI partnered with a couple hundred companies. After studying them, the research, and reviewing numerous publications; we outlined the following characteristics for the best companies. Now many organizations preach how good they are but they are great pretenders. Consequently, check out Glassdoor, NPS ratings, eNPS studies, and The Best Workplace or other resources that reveal the real culture of a company.

Therefore, use this as a checklist for rating your company. How does it stack up? What would you add?

  1. Integrity
  2. Customer focus
  3. A purpose driven vision (that includes making this a better world)
  4. Engaged service focused Leadership
  5. Risk-taking
  6. Teamwork
  7. High-performance standards
  8. Highly engaged employees
  9. Excellent employee development and training
  10. Positive communication
  11. Excellent benefits and pay
  12. Innovation
  13. Limited or no politics

13 Characteristics of the Best CompaniesThis is the twentieth year for Fortune’s list of the top 100 best companies to work for. Google is #1 for the eighth time in eleven years. These twelve companies have made the list every year: REI, Publix, Goldman Sachs, Whole Foods, Nordstrom’s, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Cisco, W. L. Gore and Associates, TD Industries, Marriott International, SAS, and Wegman’s Food Markets.

Companies on the Fortune list have to go through a rigorous application and certification process. There are other companies just as good or better who don’t bother with the process. Above all, Fortune best companies do excel and provide a template for improving a business. These companies set high standards in employee engagement, customer service, revenue growth (3X others) and profitability.

What is Most Important for Leaders 

If you are a manager, how do you embrace and apply these qualities to your team? A company can have a great culture but a manager can lead terribly because of poor people skills. In addition, a company can have a lousy culture and a manager can lead superbly with great people or servant leadership skills. Consequently, the manager is the difference. Bottom-line, if you want your team to be better, you must be a better leader. Therefore, become a Servant Leader. Put your team first. Likewise, give your team what they want and need, and you will be successful.

12 Eloquent Leading by Example Quotes 12 Eloquent Leading by Example Quotes

Also, check out The 5 Dynamics of Servant Leadership ebook. Go here for our complimentaryLeading by Example Assessment/Action Planning Guide.

In addition, go here for our RealTime Learning & Training leadership and personal12 Eloquent Leading by Example Quotes 12 Eloquent Leading by Example Quotes development website. Micro-learning and career advancement at your fingertips!

Finally, do you want to accelerate your career? See our 21 Servant Leadership Training Lessons.

NOTE: About Rick Conlow International…During the past 25 years we have worked with nearly 500,000 managers representing 5M employees. Our success is their success. We are proud of our client partnerships, working with most of them over many years. Our focus is to inspire people for greatness through Servant Leadership. If we do business right through people, goals will be exceeded and positive results achieved. See our client achievements below. We look forward to including YOU!

  • 48 quality service awards including JD Power, Ford’s President Award, and Canada’s Consumers Choice Award.
  • Record-breaking sales year after year: 30%, 48%, 52%, 75%, 122% gains in sales.
  • 15-20 points on customer experience surveys.(60-95% NPS)
  • 16-20 points on employee engagement surveys.(63-85% eNPS)

Reach out to us: Contact RCI, rick@rickconlow.com or 612-868-8521.


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  • Dickson Sedzi

    It is indeed awesome to work for one of those fortune 100 companies. A company that cares about the well being of its workers should not be taken lightly.

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