The Best Places to Work in Direct Selling 2016 Honorees!

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Congratulations to all of our 2016 Best Places to Work in Direct Selling Honorees!
The companies, listed in alphabetical order, are:

  • Jamberry
  • Jeunesse
  • LegalShield
  • Nu Skin
  • Team National
  • USANA
  • Zurvita

Each company above is profiled in this supplement, with employees and executives sharing why they believe their company is a Best Place to Work in Direct Selling. All of the profiles were written by Andrea Tortora. Quantum Workplace, our third-party vendor, conducted the research and compiled the results for this program (please see page 22 for more information about Quantum and the contest).

The Best Places to Work in Direct Selling contest was designed by Direct Selling News with several goals in mind:

  • To spotlight the channel as a positive job-creating engine
  • To recognize and honor companies that have created positive work environments and become employers of choice
  • To identify and share best practices with the wider direct selling community
  • To provide valuable feedback and data to participating companies that will assist them in measuring levels of employee satisfaction and engagement

We all know that direct selling is a people business. Measuring field engagement is critical to any company’s success, and consistently delivering on that is a hallmark of the channel. But the field is only part of the people equation. Best Places to Work in Direct Selling celebrates the important role companies play as employers in the marketplace and highlights those companies that are setting the bar for establishing and nurturing work experiences and environments that bring out the very best in people.

Our 2016 contest was open to direct selling companies with at least 50 full-time employees based in North America. Any employer or employee could have nominated their company during the open period last fall, which ended on October 23, 2015. Each nomination included a contact person who received all of the communications from Quantum. After the nomination period ended, Quantum sent out an official invitation to each company to begin the survey process.

Employees were invited to complete an anonymous and confidential survey. A certain percentage of employees at each company, based on size, had to complete the survey in order for the company to reach the threshold to be included. After the survey period was over, the team at Quantum calculated the responses to determine overall scoring and ranking. Only companies who met the threshold determined by Quantum as the baseline for a Best Places to Work environment were announced as Honorees for 2016.

We plan to run this contest again in 2017, and hope you will join us!


FAQ

How are the honorees selected?

Direct Selling News has partnered with Quantum Workplace, an HR technology company that has been collecting Best Places to Work data for more than a decade and currently supports 40 programs across North America. Their software enables companies to discover the strength of their employees, culture and leadership. For the Best Places to Work in Direct Selling program, Quantum Workplace asked employees of nominated companies to complete an online survey designed to measure workplace engagement. Next, Quantum Workplace compiled and evaluated the responses, ranking the participating companies based on their overall composite score. Honorees were selected based on the results of this survey. This same process will be conducted for our 2017 Best Places to Work contest.

What is the science behind the survey?

Quantum Workplace’s survey was developed by a panel of thought leaders in the field of employee engagement and is validated annually against more than 1.5 million responses across 5,000 companies to continuously recognize trends in the evolution of engagement.

Is the survey confidential?

The employee survey is always strictly confidential. Each company has access to survey results at the aggregate level to help them understand and build engagement. However, the individual identities of employees are never revealed. In fact, companies are not even able to see who has or has not completed the survey. All full-time, permanent, corporate headquartered employees are eligible to take the survey.

Do all of the employees at my company need to complete the survey?

All eligible employees must be invited to take the survey. To reach a 95 percent confidence level with a margin of error of plus or minus 5 percent, a company will need to achieve employee participation based on the following percentages per size of organization to be considered as an honoree:
50 employees or fewer = 85%
51 – 150 = 70%
151 – 500 = 50%
501 – 1,000 = 30%

Will my company receive the survey results?

Yes, all participating companies receive a free Overview report showing the company’s overall score compared to the finalists, summary of the engagement category scores, demographic information, and some comments from the open-ended questions. Surveys can also be customized for varying fees. Customizations do not affect the way results are scored for the purpose of the competition. Custom questions are excluded from the calculations.

What if my company does not make the Best Places to Work list?

All companies that participate receive access to a free Overview report and have the opportunity to purchase reports to help improve employee engagement, but the company name is not placed on any list and is not printed in the special publication. There is NO RISK to participate. All companies that have reached their participation goal will be contacted as to their status as a finalist or non-finalist.


Click here to order the April 2016 issue in which this article appeared.


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Jamberry

Jamberry is growing so fast that its leaders quickly learned the importance of allowing employees to stretch for a job and take risks.

The Lindon, Utah, company launched in 2010. Jamberry makes and distributes nail wraps, nail lacquers, gel enamels and nail and hand care products.

Jane Walter joined Jamberry at the very beginning, as its only customer support agent. She is employee No. 11. As the company grew, Walter hired a team. When demand required a full call center, Walter knew that was a job for a pro, so she took on another opportunity.

“I took an ugly brown building and made it us,” says Walter, who works as Director of Office Services. “That is not anything I even ever dreamed I would do, but man, it was the best fun I ever had while getting paid.”

This culture of letting employees excel where they think they can is a key ingredient to Jamberry’s growth formula. Gaya Samarasingha, Senior Director of International Sales and Development, says executives value employee opinions and empower people to do their jobs.

“We can truly bring value and make a difference,” Samarasingha says. “That’s really important to me in a job from a self-satisfaction standpoint. No other company I have worked for can even come close to Jamberry’s culture.”

The work environment is one of teamwork and collaboration that delivers a feeling of trust and transparency, says James Crawford, Director of Customer Support. Crawford joined Jamberry to build its call center. He previously managed a global call center for another network marketing firm. The chance to help Jamberry construct a call center from the ground up was quite appealing. “It’s been hectic and crazy but it’s a great opportunity,” Crawford says.


“This is by far my favorite job I have ever worked at. I actually enjoy coming into work every day! Jamberry is an amazing company.”


He appreciates the relationship value that doughnut Fridays with CEO Adam Hepworth and monthly company lunches provide. For him, it’s refreshing to work for a business that is not stuck in the old way of doing things.

“They are very innovative,” Crawford says of Jamberry’s executives. “They encourage ideas and if something doesn’t work it is not the end of the world. Instead, we ask, ‘What happened with it, what went well, what didn’t go well and how can we improve?’ ”

This approach leads to a natural progression for employees who want to move up within Jamberry. Walter remembers the early days, when she sat 2 feet away from Chief Performance Officer Jared Richards. Intense teamwork led to surviving those heady days of being an upstart direct selling company.


“This is seriously the best company and they deserve this award! This company has the most generous CEO I have ever worked for.”


And now Walter is so comfortable with Richards and Hepworth that she “can walk into their offices anytime and say, ‘What about this?’ and we just chat. I know if I feel I am in over my head, I go and talk with them.”

Walter’s role means she handles a wider range of issues and projects. She starts most days not knowing what will be happening. She begins by walking the office, asking colleagues if they need anything. “People know to come to me if they need something and we all collaborate when things need to be done,” Walter says. “I feel well taken care of and that is kind of unusual.”

Hepworth says, “We understand in today’s world, the health and happiness of the employees and their families counts for so much. We are proud of our great medical benefits along with other benefits that let our employees know we care about them.”

In addition to the extensive health care, Jamberry employees enjoy discounted fitness center memberships, Birthday Day Off, and Paid Give Back Days to support the local community.  Not to mention frequent opportunities to share time together and celebrate successes.


“Jamberry has been an incredible blessing in my life. It’s provided me with a quality of life that I wouldn’t enjoy without it. The right people are at the helm and this company has an incredibly bright future that I’m proud and excited to be a part of.”


A focus on fun while working goes a long way, especially when the work can be stressful at a company growing as fast as Jamberry, says Samarasingha, who is wrapping up preparations to launch Jamberry’s U.K. market in April.

“When employees enjoy the work they do and the people they work with, when they know they are valued and recognized by the top management, and when they feel like they are part of something larger and making a difference, they give 200 percent to the job,” Samarasingha says. “They enjoy coming to work, putting in long hours and working the weekends to accomplish the company goals. Most importantly we have so much fun and laughter at work every day.”

Crawford envisions lots of opportunities for his own personal growth, and that of his colleagues, as Jamberry becomes a more global business.

“I am doing something new and I have the autonomy to take the skills I have and be recognized,” Crawford says. “And I do have somewhere to go from here.”


Click here to order the April 2016 issue in which this article appeared.


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Jeunesse

At Jeunesse, everyone has a chance to grow.

DeAndre Brown left a job at Subway to join the Altamonte Springs, Florida-based maker and distributor of youth enhancement products such as skincare and supplements. That was eight years ago, just as Randy Ray and Wendy Lewis were launching the business. Brown started on day one with about 20 others.

“It is remarkable how the company has grown and how I have grown,” says Brown, a VIP customer service specialist for some of Jeunesse’s largest sales leaders. Now 30, Brown was 22 when he began working in the shipping department. He thought that was where he wanted to be. Then he started talking with Ray and Lewis and company directors.

“I am very people oriented and they told me they were opening a new department and I took the plunge,” Brown says. “My vocabulary and speech, networking and ability to speak with others have improved dramatically.”

Brown’s personal transformation at Jeunesse is not unique. Many of his colleagues share similar stories. What makes it all possible are the guiding principles that direct the everyday actions at Jeunesse, where everyone abides by the motto: One team. One family. One Jeunesse.

It starts with having a servant’s heart, says David Matichak, Director of International Logistics. “We are here to serve our leaders, distributors, consumers and fellow employees,” Matichak says. “We treat each other with mutual respect and work together to achieve goals.”

A high priority is placed on teamwork and collaboration, honesty and integrity, being results oriented, learning and sharing as well as kindness and listening. Not to mention empowerment.


“I have never had the pleasure to work with a group of people that are so friendly, who love what they do and who encourage growth and support you through the tough moments. Thank you Jeunesse Team!”


Alison Blackwell, Director of Operations, started out as Chief Visionary Officer Scott Lewis’ administrative assistant. Scott Lewis treated Blackwell as part of the team and took her opinions and ideas into consideration.

“I naturally began to take on extra responsibilities within my role and that led to my promotions over the years,” Blackwell says. “I got to grow at my own pace, and that is what I really like about this company.” Now Blackwell is growing her own department and her own people.

This culture of empowerment allows Jeunesse to retain top employees. Directors do not micromanage, Matichak says. Instead they encourage employees to make decisions and move forward. And if that means walking into the CEO’s office to ask advice, then so be it.

“It is like one big family,” Brown says. “We all trust each other to do our jobs. We are all working together. We can just go in with the owners and directors and joke around about sports or talk about work. It’s just normal.”

The Jeunesse guiding principles make it clear that “we are all on the same side with the same goal,” Blackwell says.


“Jeunesse has been a saving grace for me and my family. Since becoming an employee I have never been so happy and secure with my future with an employer.”


“It’s a team environment. A place where employees of all levels are encouraged to voice their opinions and know they will be heard,” Blackwell says. “This strengthens us.”

Wendy Lewis, Co-Founder and COO, says creating a friendly and open environment lets employees feel comfortable and “know their thoughts are heard and contribute to the success of our organization. This helps build strong teams and fosters a sense of trust and belonging.”

To reward employees for their dedication and hard work, Jeunesse provides generous benefits, including flexible hours, fully paid health insurance, fully paid life insurance, a matching 401(k) plan, and an on-site gym and personal trainer. The newest benefit is unlimited paid time off. The idea behind this policy is that employees should not have to keep track of their earned hours, Matichak says. As long as a supervisor approves, “if they need the time they should take it.”


“The organization, as a whole, demonstrates their employees are valuable to the organization by appreciation days, holiday parties, birthday recognition, promotion recognition and great benefits.”


The liberal PTO speaks to Jeunesse’s honesty and integrity. Scott Lewis often says, “We lead with our heart while trusting our intuition, because it is the right thing to do. We have always been a principles-based company.”

Blackwell says the unlimited PTO policy should help to encourage employees to take a break when they need it—and it provides managers a way to give people time off as a reward. “My team is so dedicated and they always have their nose to the grindstone,” Blackwell says. “Taking away the restrictions on PTO will make them feel more free and at ease to take time off.”

For some, the job is so fulfilling and engaging, it’s hard to step away. Take Brown. He can’t help but smile when he talks about Jeunesse and how working for the company has impacted his life. “I have traveled around the world to more places than I can count: Dubai, Thailand, Canada, Paris, Brazil, this year Rome. The benefits, the rewards, they open up so many things for people in every department. Who wouldn’t want to work here?”


Click here to order the April 2016 issue in which this article appeared.


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LegalShield

The picturesque glass-and-beige building atop a hill in Ada, Oklahoma, is more than a workplace—it’s a community. And one that Leslie Dickenson, Director of Associate Services at LegalShield, wishes she joined years earlier.

“ ‘We are here for you’ is the feeling that makes working here even better,” says Dickenson, a former nurse and mother of two. “We are all connected and it is not hard to ask for help.”

The family atmosphere at LegalShield is aligned with the firm’s core value to see the good in all people, says CEO Jeff Bell. “That’s what a family does. It always looks for the best in each other. In the workplace, family really translates into caring for and believing in each other,” Bell says. “When people do, they go the extra mile for the mutual success of the business.”

LegalShield connects individuals, families and business owners with a network of provider law firms who assist members with a variety of everyday legal issues. The goal of every employee is to protect people.

Jeannie Forneris, Director of Marketing Services, says the work family encompasses co-workers, sales associates, members and provider law firms. “In every avenue of the company we are fortunate to have the opportunity to do well by helping others,” Forneris says. “We are always working to do the best job we can for whichever audience we are working with at the time.”

When Dickenson joined LegalShield, she wanted a job where she could use and grow her skills, but also one where managers understand the demands faced by and flexibility needed by parents. What surprised her is how much value sales associates put in the services Dickenson and her colleagues provide to them. The relationship is one developed mostly by phone, but when those from the home office attend a convention or get to meet associates who visit corporate, “you can feel that connection,” Dickenson says.


“This has been the longest-held job I’ve ever had, and my time here has included several ‘firsts’: My first Christmas bonus, my first ‘good’ insurance, and my first real vacation time. I can’t imagine being anywhere else in the world right now.”


“They remember talking to us on the phone and are genuinely glad to meet us,” she says. “And that is the most rewarding benefit, to know that we did assist them and they did appreciate it.”

Company leaders make a point to invest in their people by providing stellar benefits and lots of recognition. Perks include an on-site cafeteria, fitness center, doctor’s office, prescription program and on-site dry cleaning service. The entire workforce is eligible for performance-based bonuses and employees can access 400 training courses for professional development.

Employees also receive legal and identity theft coverage and can take part in initiatives that reward them with cash and prizes for coming up with efficiencies in their own jobs and in the business, Bell says.

LegalShield also promotes fun programs around employee health and wellness, such as monthly Healthy Lifestyle Challenges and Lunch and Learn sessions about health risk factors. These efforts “make you feel you are special as a person and not just another worker,” says executive assistant Kristi Hudson.


“LegalShield is the best place I have ever worked, it’s not just a job, we are family with feelings, respect and love for one another. We’re here for each other and that’s what makes a company work and achieve goals.”


The benefits and initiatives also are paying dividends: In 2015, LegalShield employees lost 3,292 pounds and the company awarded more than $268,345 in bonuses. Bell says all of those numbers will grow in the coming year.

Employees say the open and flexible atmosphere encourages them to freely innovate and collaborate.

Software engineer Colton Nohelty joined LegalShield three years ago, when he was still in college. A four-month internship morphed into a full-time job. And six months ago, Nohelty moved with the company to work in the New York City office. “If you want to be heard, you can be heard and everything is open to change,” he says about the work environment.

Nohelty likens the New York office to a mix between a startup and an enterprise company. He sits across the desk from the head of mobile engineering, and whenever he has a concern the two quickly discuss options and solutions.


“I have been with this company for almost 10 years, and I really love working here. I enjoy working with my coworkers and my bosses. They really care and that makes a difference. My only regret is that I didn’t start to work here a lot sooner.”


“There are unbelievable growth opportunities here,” Nohelty says. “I’ve had the chance to push the limits for myself and to do things and change things on my own.”

Hudson seconds that belief. A former team member in tech support and network services, Hudson has worked at the legal services provider nearly six years, starting when she was in college. Hudson is no stranger to the firm—her father is a 20-year LegalShield veteran. Her husband, Jamie Hudson, works at LegalShield, too.

“You never feel like you are stuck. I have moved positions a few times and I always feel that when I have one job down I can find something new,” Hudson says.

What makes this happen is a management team that works closely with employees, noting their skills and asking often about their career aspirations. Managers find ways to create new opportunities for employees, which develops loyalty, Hudson says.

“You really do get to know the people here,” Hudson says. “Everyone is so down-to-earth and you see people outside of work and on the street and they are your family.”


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Nu Skin

The opportunities for professional and personal advancement are so abundant at Nu Skin Enterprises that they reach beyond the business into the lives of employees’ families, distributors and the community at large.

And there’s lots of encouragement and recognition for everyone along the way. The philosophy behind this comprehensive effort is a company culture that aims to improve people’s lives across the globe and in the very backyards of the neighborhoods where Nu Skin operates.

“The Force for Good culture is not just something we say, it is something we do,” says Chieh Hanson, Director of Sales for the U.S. and Canada at Provo, Utah-based Nu Skin, which makes and distributes anti-aging skincare and nutritional products.

From serving meals to the homeless, cleaning up streets and purchasing holiday gifts for the needy to helping co-workers struggling with tough times and donating VitaMeals to malnourished children around the world, Nu Skin offers ample opportunities for employees and their families to share with others.

That feeling of teamwork stuck with Janeth Mercado, even after she left her job at Nu Skin for a few years to raise her family. When she bumped into her former boss while shopping, Mercado immediately asked if she could return. And she did. The warehouse supervisor now counts eight years under her belt.

“They engage employees in teamwork, they use our individual strengths to benefit the company and they give us opportunities to grow,” Mercado says. “It’s nice to know that you work for a firm that cares for you.”

Mercado first landed at Nu Skin through a temp agency. After being hired full time, her career path continued on an upward trajectory, from coordinator to team lead to supervisor. That ability to evolve professionally gives Mercado confidence. “Being a mom, you are always thinking of your family and looking out further ahead, and this company offers you that path to your future,” Mercado says.


“I don’t know of any other company that gives so much in return for individual efforts as well as the gifts of time and resources to local as well as international individual and organizational needs.”


There is no end to the ways Nu Skin enables employees to soar, says Jordan Hall, a sales support representative at the call center. When Hall sought out employment to improve his use of Mandarin Chinese, friends suggested Nu Skin. He says his co-workers are the reason he never wants to leave.

“When I first started, I was very nervous and shy on the phones with my Mandarin,” Hall says. “I had a co-worker who, on a break, pulled up a chair and sat right next to me to help me get through a call.” That constant support shows Hall his colleagues have his back. He often returns the favor. And he’s reaping the benefits. With an end goal of working as a trainer, Hall already is being given more responsibility and is participating in a training pilot program.

The supportive environment encourages Nu Skin employees to push the envelop when it comes to research and innovation, says Shelly Hester, a nutritional scientist and registered dietitian who joined Nu Skin as a senior scientist nearly three years ago.

The collaborative work and family-friendly attitude delivers a work-life balance, especially important to people like Hester, with a young son and a working spouse. “The company invests in us and in the science,” Hester says. She and colleagues often attend conferences to learn about scientific advances and present their own research. “They give us the tools we need to grow and develop in our careers.”


“The energy that comes out of the office is electrifying and contagious. Nu Skin truly is the best place to work!”


The ability to directly engage with distributors and customers contributes to Nu Skin’s employee appeal. Hester and Hanson share their expertise and build relationships with people who use and sell the products they design and promote, interactions that simply would not happen at a traditional company.

When Hanson arrived from Taiwan, she planned to get a graduate degree from Brigham Young University and a part-time job. A Nu Skin consumer in Taiwan, she was thrilled to find the firm in Utah. She could work there and continue to do so when she returned to Taiwan.

That was 12 years ago. Hanson started in the call center, met her husband and never left. She marvels at the opportunities for growth and the ways her professional skills are nurtured and valued. She now works with the multicultural markets, assisting Chinese, Korean and Japanese leaders in the U.S. “They give me full control over how I can grow the market, so I have been able to do a lot and help the distributors who are also immigrants like me,” Hanson says. “We want to find our American dream.”

Every Nu Skin employee gets the same benefits, no matter the job title. Free Nu Skin products? Check. Health insurance? Check. Holiday parties? Summer outings? Check, check.

Recognition events? Oh, yes. From success trips to impromptu pingpong tournaments and free cake days, Nu Skin makes a concerted effort to show employees how much they are appreciated. The same goes for leading distributors, who are treated to a literal “red carpet welcome” when they visit headquarters—because if it weren’t for their sales, Nu Skin would not be the company it is.

Why does Nu Skin reward its people in this way? Because they are “an invaluable ingredient to our recipe for success,” says Truman Hunt, Nu Skin President and CEO.

“The Nu Skin family is comprised of the finest and most skilled people that could be found inside or outside of direct selling,” Hunt says. “They are the heart and soul of our global enterprise. They are passionate about their areas of responsibility and fully devoted to Nu Skin’s mission to be a force for good in the world.”


Click here to order the April 2016 issue in which this article appeared.


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Team National

Giving, serving and helping others is at the heart of everything Team National does, and employees say that culture of caring comes straight from the top. “When I got here, I fell in love,” says Eileen Ryan, Director of Membership Services. “I feel like how you do anything is how you do everything.”

Ryan sought out employment at Davie, Florida-based Team National, which provides discounted business services and shopping to members, after noting the company’s philanthropic work with the Broward County Boys & Girls Club. She wanted to feel valued at work. And she noticed that the Loehr and Chrysler families truly live their servant leadership.

“They don’t just give money, they get their hands dirty,” Ryan says. “They are in the gym with the kids, interacting with them.”

At the office, “a feeling of openness and teamwork is embodied by a true open door policy,” says Kiran Madray, Product Manager. “You can literally get up from your desk and walk into the CEO’s (Angela Loehr Chrysler’s) office and ask her a question about something you are working on,” Madray says. “If you have an idea you can propose it and your opinion will carry weight on that project.”

The friendly and enjoyable work environment is not what Madray expected from corporate America. “They hire all kinds of people, young and old, who can pass on and share knowledge,” Madray says. “We all work hand in hand and we ask different departments for help.”

Lisa Jaiprashad, who works in customer service, describes Team National as “a mini United Nations.” The college student says she’s learned a lot from her co-workers about other cultures and traditions just by getting to know her colleagues.


“I have always thought this company is far superior to the ones I have worked for in the past.”


The company provides many opportunities for team building, including employee appreciation outings to the bowling lanes, weekly catered lunches and family picnics. But the benefit Team National employees seem to value most are the monthly personal growth sessions. Led by different company executives, these training workshops “help you not only to develop professionally in your career but also give you strategies you can apply in your personal life,” says Briana Lopez, a Data Processing Manager with Team National for eight years.

She recalls a session led by Andy Andrews that focused on overcoming fears. “It was about being outgoing and trying to do something every day that you don’t feel comfortable with,” Lopez says.

Jaiprashad said she uses skills every day that she learned in a session about organization. And Ryan was floored when Chrysler gave every employee a $20 bill at the end of a session on positive thinking and told them to “keep it or go out there and share it in a way that shows people are good and kind.


“I’ve been with this organization for over 13 years now (since I was 16). It has truly been a blessing to me and my entire family.”


“She never asked us what we did with it but some employees did share. One person bought umbrellas and gave them away to people caught in the rain without one,” Ryan says.

These kinds of messages illustrate just how much Team National executives care about giving their employees the tools they need to advance and grow. Lopez, who raised a family while working at Team National, is thankful for the support her co-workers and managers provided over the years.

“It really is a family environment and a family-friendly workplace,” she says. “There were times when my assistance outside of work was not as strong and I needed to be with my children and they were understanding in that regard.”

At the same time, Team National is a growing company that provides many opportunities for personal and professional development to encourage employees to move up the corporate ladder. That is a key attribute for CEO Angela Loehr Chrysler. “I want employees to not only feel valued and appreciated but to also feel like there is room for growth,” Chrysler says. “Our personal growth sessions are much more than how it will help them at work. They are designed to show how we can all be a better parent, spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend.”


“Team National is a great place to work with top management that cares about the employees, not just for the benefit of Team National but for their personal benefit as well.”


During her eight years at Team National, Lopez has witnessed many co-workers start at the bottom and move up. “That is what you look for in a company,” she says. “When you start working here you want a company you can be a part of for a long time.”

Team National founder Richard Loehr said years ago that “no one person within corporate or the sale field would make or break the company.” Chrysler embodies her father’s sentiment. “We focus on helping others and providing choices for others,” she says. “We work with an understanding that we are a team and we help the sales field do great things, and they need us and we need them.”

Ryan says she witnesses the mission of helping others being carried out every day at Team National. “Whether it is giving to the community or helping the field change their lives through this opportunity, that is the common thread.”

She notes that even the CEO stops what she is doing to greet people on a tour or to make sure she wishes an employee happy birthday while hand-delivering a $100 gift card and a handwritten personal note. “We live by the golden rule,” Chrysler says. “We all want to be valued and be part of a team that matters. So we hire nice people and train them on the skills they need.”


Click here to order the April 2016 issue in which this article appeared.


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USANA

The culture at USANA—and the resulting benefits offered to employees—is centered on health and wellness.

That makes sense for the Salt Lake City-based firm, which produces nutritional products and nutraceuticals designed to help customers feel good and live their best life. But USANA takes its wellness offerings a step further than most companies. Perks include free fresh fruit in the break room and an on-site fitness facility.

At USANA, wellness is holistic, says Chad Myler, Senior Wellness Coordinator. The wellness program includes physical, mental and financial health and all the tools employees need to achieve it, such as on-site classes during the workday, access to a physical trainer and meal planner, and a generous profit sharing program.

“Being a health-conscious company, USANA wants to make sure its employees are also healthy,” says Missy Bird, who works in internal communications. “Being healthy resonates through our walls.”

Dave Wentz, Co-CEO, says financial health is a key part of the wellness trinity. USANA’s profit sharing program lets the company give employees an annual bonus equal to between six and eight weeks of pay.

“We want to live by the values USANA was built on,” Wentz says. The bonus “can change an employee’s life by helping them make ends meet or take that special family vacation.”

Healthy employees are more often happy employees. And when staff members feel appreciated and rewarded, they tend to enjoy their time at work and become more productive. The atmosphere at USANA is open, positive and family-oriented, Myler says.

“More often than not you feel as if you are working with friends and family instead of just co-workers,” he says. “I love that you are able to approach upper management here without feeling intimidated because they realize that we all are in this together.”


“I love working for USANA. I have been here for 14+ years and have no intention of leaving. I feel there are great opportunities, and I feel an internal desire to contribute more and add more value for how good the company is to me.”


The team approach means that staff and management show respect and trust for each other, says Connie Ramos, Executive Assistant. “There is no wall between management and employees,” she says. “They are always there to listen to new ideas or suggestions for change.”

Frequent interactions among departments and all levels of the business are essential to USANA’s continued success, Wentz adds.

“Building relationships is the key to our business for our field, but also for our employees,” Wentz says. “USANA employees can count on a fun, open and community-focused workplace, managed by an executive team that is committed to acting on its employees’ ideas, values and concerns.”

That kind of focus is important to Elysia Yuen, Communications Traffic Coordinator. “The corporate culture can really make or break a place,” Yuen says. “If the environment you work in is positive, nurturing and challenging, it will really push the company to be a great place to work.”

And USANA does just that.


“USANA leadership is constantly making a conscious effort to uphold our company values. They show genuine concern for all employees, and show in word and deed how valuable each employee is to our organization.”


The company culture of camaraderie and team spirit makes Misty Dangel, Public Relations Manager, want to come to work each day. She says the vast benefits only add to the pleasant atmosphere. In addition to the wellness program, USANA also gives employees free health screenings and USANA “bucks” that can be used to purchase the company’s products.

USANA also invests in the personal development of individual employees by providing Toastmasters on-site, workshops and trainings that “help employees become better professionals,” Yuen says.

The culture, the benefits, the teamwork and family atmosphere all work hand in hand to help USANA build a company where work-life balance is the norm for its employees. This is a place where employees are encouraged to use the gym or attend a workshop during their workday. The message, says Sylvia Glade-Webber, Administrative Assistant, is that “when we work together as a team, we all benefit.”

Dangel agrees. “The profit-sharing bonus we receive each year is a fantastic incentive and really motivates employees to cut costs and be more strategic,” she says.

For Wentz, the most important aspect of USANA’s work environment is the people. The effort executives put into making USANA a place where employees want to stay is paying off. Turnover is very low and many staff members refer friends and family for job openings. That fact is essential to USANA’s ability to continue to build a strong culture with like-minded individuals who share a genuine interest in working toward the same goals.


“Personally, this company is the ‘Best Place to Work’ for me. All of my needs are met, I am challenged to do and be better than what I am. The product, company value and work ethic are in line with my core beliefs; I am proud to have my name connected to USANA.”


“We firmly believe that if you enjoy the people you work with, you’re more likely to work harder to give back to your team and company,” Wentz says.

Writer Ben Raskin says he couldn’t recommend working for a better company. “My career at USANA is challenging, exciting and always evolving. My co-workers constantly raise the bar of what is expected and our executive team respects and trusts us to make good decisions,” he says. “The high-energy, fast-paced world of USANA is a natural fit for anyone who wants to find a perfect balance between teamwork and individual performance.”


Click here to order the April 2016 issue in which this article appeared.


Table of Contents


Zurvita

Zurvita is truly a company with heart.

Co-Founders Mark and Tracy Jarvis walk around the office and sit and talk with employees, asking what they can do to make someone’s day better. “We want to make sure that every employee is a real person to us,” says Jay Shafer, Co-CEO. “We know they have dreams and ambitions and goals, and we want to understand where they want to go and make them feel cared about.”

The Houston-based maker of nutritional and weight-management products is founded on three principles:

  • To build a company that honors and glorifies God
  • To develop a company with humble leadership
  • To create an environment where people can win at every level

This executive viewpoint is not just lip service. The Jarvises model humble leadership every day, says Amalia Evans, a customer service trainer. “They know what it is like to start from the bottom and they get the frustrations that we experience,” Evans says. “Depending on your skill level and what you want to do, Zurvita will help you get there.”

Evans’ experience is a great example. She joined the company a year ago in an entry-level customer service job and was quickly promoted by her boss, Debbie Travis. With seven years of customer training experience under her belt, Evans showed strong mentoring potential that got her noticed. What she quickly noted about Zurvita is the way top leaders genuinely interact with employees, from Mark Jarvis shouting “Good morning!” to people as they come to work, to Travis’ ability to be “part mom, part boss-lady.”

“No one in customer service could have a better boss,” Evans says. “She is very understanding about how a business should work, but she also understands that people have lives outside of their job.”


“I can’t say enough about my manager. She listens, we talk things out and conquer our projects.”


The Jarvises say every person needs to believe they matter. Tracy Jarvis says the lessons she and Mark learned from working in the field give them a perspective that is their strength. “The field is the lifeblood of the business, but our corporate employees really need to love what they do,” Tracy Jarvis says.

As often as she can, Jarvis shares with employees that their efforts do change lives every day. Just knowing the impact one’s work can make is inspiring. Dena Kline, a Marketing Creative Director, joined Zurvita about 5 months ago after a friend who did contract design work for Zurvita could not stop talking about her positive experiences. “It’s really all about the people you’re working with,” Kline says. “We take the work seriously, but we don’t take ourselves very seriously.”

Kline says each member of the marketing team brings different skills to the table, which leads to a synergy that works extremely well under pressure, like when materials need to be ready for a big convention. “The attitude of the team was unique to me,” Kline says, “because when someone finished a task they couldn’t come back fast enough to ask what they could do next.”

The corporate culture also impresses Kline. It’s a family environment where company owners are accessible, authentic and intentional about including their faith in their daily work life. “That makes us comfortable bringing our own faith, even though we come from all different backgrounds,” Kline says. “We have people from all continents except Antarctica working here.”


“Zurvita is a family culture where every person feels they matter.”


For the Jarvises, the family culture means being transparent and sharing financial goals with everyone. Tracy Jarvis says every employee is eligible for incentive bonuses. The Jarvises and their management team let employees know they are appreciated in other ways, too. Zurvita’s top product, wellness drink Zeal, is available on-site to consume at any time. A recent improvement to Zurvita’s health insurance decreased employee costs in a way that “made it like getting a huge raise,” Kline says.

Also a coming move will put all employees on the same floor instead of in three different suites. To ensure a cohesive environment, there are always lots of lunches and celebrations to bring everyone together. At the new office, Zurvita will provide employee membership discounts to the adjacent fitness center.

Zurvita’s Vice President of Ministry Services is a unique benefit. This is like having a chaplain on staff available for employees at any time, to talk or pray together. Bible study sessions and prayer groups also are offered outside of work hours. “If you’re having an issue and need a shoulder to cry on or want to talk about your life in general, it’s nice to have someone who is there to be that ear,” Evans says.


“This company is amazing and I have learned so much from it.”


By providing this type of counseling, Zurvita’s executives let employees know they care about them as real people, not just as employees. Personal development is just as important as professional development. Kline sees lots of opportunity to move up and evolve as Zurvita grows. Evans agrees, noting that customer service is where many department directors (sales, compliance, IT) got their start.

This goes back to what Co-CEO Shafer says is Zurvita’s biggest benefit—that it tries to promote from within. “Customer service is the touch point,” he says.

If employees feel they are learning, growing and gaining new skills, then, Tracy Jarvis says, company leaders are doing their job. “We have watched people train up and even leave and go somewhere else and they thank us because they have a better opportunity thanks to what they learn here,” she says.

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