Time to read: one and one quarter minutes
Two weeks ago, I had the distinct privilege to attend a reunion for the company that hired me in 2001, Guidant Corporation. As a result of an acquisition that turned Guidant into Boston Scientific (a dramatic series of events studied in MBA programs), former Guidant employees are everywhere. What's even more amazing is that 12 years after the acquisition, 400 people are excited to gather in a ballroom to drink beer and connect.
While I was at the event, I was thinking of you and how my experience at Guidant taught me what makes a truly great company. When you reflect on where you work, how many of these factors do you see (or not)? What can you do to influence these things, even in small ways?
Here are 4 things I learned from Guidant:
- Guidant prioritized employees. When I worked in HR, I was amazed at the decisions that got made about things like benefits, things that cost the company a pretty penny but were good for employees.
Lesson: A great company prioritizes employees.
- Guidant had a culture of innovation. Each employee felt like they could contribute their gifts and make suggestions for process improvements that would actually be implemented. I had a lot of autonomy to create things I cared about like a van pool program for commuters.
Lesson: Give employees freedom and let them do their best work for you.
- Employees felt connected to a sense of purpose. Our medical devices made a difference. Each year, patients would visit the campus for a celebration of their stories and our work. We were committed and deeply connected to a sense of mission and meaning.
Lesson: People care deeply about the impact of their work.
- Employees belonged to each other. When I first interviewed, I heard things like, "Guidant is a family." In my roles, I interacted across many departments, and it was clear that we were on the same team. We cared deeply for one another. And still do.
Lesson: Relationships matter. A lot.
If you've ever had the chance to work for your version of Guidant, you are lucky indeed. If you haven't, what can you do to make a difference?
With rebel love,