What’s most important for any business? Some would say profits, long-term viability, and business growth. Others would say making a positive difference in the world and serving the interests of society at large. And many business owners and leaders would cite the well-being of their employees and customers as the thing that matters most.
At Leadpoint, we fall into the last camp: our employees are what allow us to earn a profit and grow, contribute to the health of our communities, and sleep well at night.
Our employees matter.
As experts in the recycling space, those employees work in a dangerous environment – one that could literally kill them. So right up there with the importance of our employees is safety.
The safety of our employees matters.
Saying our employees and their safety matter is easy. Proving it is more difficult.
In early 2019, Leadpoint introduced LiveSafe, a philosophy that embodies the spirit of caring at the heart of the company’s values and purpose. It was developed to help employees see safety as something personal, down to the individual level, and to reinforce that Leadpoint’s safety efforts work to protect them.
It’s a new way to think about safety.
“We want every Leadpoint employee to hear, feel, see and live the message that they matter,” says CEO and President Frank Ramirez, “to their family, friends, coworkers, and Leadpoint.”
As he says to employees, “I don’t think we talk enough about why you have that vest on, why we wear earplugs, why we have training to understand the hazards, why we have PPE; why we do all these things around safety. The ‘why’ is so you can go home at the end of your shift. That’s why.”
Driving that point home was the impetus for the company’s Why It Matters tour.
Frank and other members of the Leadpoint executive team took that message on the road for 62 days, meeting with every employee at every site we support in the Why It Matters tour.
That’s a significant investment to prove the point.
With a safety presentation from Brian Haney, vice president of safety and compliance, as the backbone of the tour, employees got a refresher training on key safety behaviors, hazard identification, their Stop Work Authority, and safety action points.
They also got to know the company’s leaders over a catered lunch and through one-on-one conversation.
The message: We appreciate you. The work you do matters. Without you, we don’t exist.
“I hope every employee also heard that we want to help them get ahead,” said Mike Dickey, vice president of human resources. “At every stop on the tour, we recognized individual employees for their tenure and service to the company. We celebrated milestone service anniversaries at five and ten years.
“And, we encouraged every employee to move up and work to achieve their goals, whether it’s at Leadpoint or somewhere else,” Mike said.
Opportunities exist for every Leadpoint employee. The company is growing. Its “promote from within” philosophy is evident in this statistic: 18 of 28 Leadpoint onsite managers started as sorters.
That news had to be encouraging for everyone on the tour. It also reinforced the value of commitment: if you stay, learn and grow your skills, you can move up in the company. Employee retention is more than critical to Leadpoint and our customers. It’s valuable to our employees and their future.
As each tour stop concluded, employees were invited to sign the Why It Matters banner for their site.
“We wanted to drive home the personal investment we all have in staying safe,” Frank said. “The physical act of signing-on to our LiveSafe philosophy and committing to the company was a powerful way to demonstrate that shared commitment.”
The tour wound-down but the banners remained behind as a reminder that Leadpoint cares and that the safety and growth of every employee matters.
To join the Why It Matters tour, watch the video recap here.