PTG has been fortunate enough to be named one of “The Best Places to Work” in South Carolina for four consecutive years (in the top 10 every year!) in a list put together by the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce and the Best Companies group.
The process for making this list is largely dependent on the responses to an employee survey (a few dozen agree/disagree questions and a couple open ended questions) about the employee experience. I always enjoy getting the responses from the survey. It shows the areas where our team members think that we are doing a great job of making PTG a great place to work.
But more importantly, it also shows the areas where they would like to see us improve. We all like hearing where we are doing well – but real progress comes by understanding the areas where you need to work on improvements.
Prior to founding PTG, I had the pleasure of working for a large publicly held software company here in Greenville. The 8 years I spent working for Datastream Systems, Inc. (now owned by Infor) helped shape the idea of what a great place to work should look like.
Here are the things that we have tried to focus on to make PTG one of the best places to work:
Give people autonomy.
We work hard at PTG to give our team members general guidelines on how to execute their work, but we believe that people work best when they are given their autonomy.
Give people the tools they need to be successful.
We’ve all worked in places where tools were withheld because ‘budgets were tight’. This excuse always bothered me – when are budgets not tight? We’ve found that by investing in the right tools that our team needs, the budget will work itself out.
Balance work and life.
Cliché, yes, but it’s true. We’ve never been sticklers for tracking time off, specific work hours, or punching a time clock. While we do track hours pretty closely for customer billing purposes, when it comes to time off, we’ve found success in letting people drive their own schedule (within reason of course!). This has led to increased productivity for our team and was cited repeatedly by employees something we do to make PTG a great place to work.
Treat your team like a family.
We spend more waking time with our work family than we do our home family. It seems only fitting that team members should be treated like family members. Celebrate their success, recognize when they are hurting, and support them no matter what. Families can fight and have major differences in opinion – but when it comes down to it we will always support each other and work towards a common mission.
Set general guidelines.
At PTG, we have our ‘Fundamentals’. These are the things that make us who we are. Our Fundamentals are general guidelines that, when all else fails, you can fall back to when trying to make a decision or determine how a situation should be handled. (These were developed after reading David Friedman’s Fundamentally Different.) Examples of our Fundamentals include: “Celebrate Success”, “Re-earn the customer’s business with every interaction”, and “Speak directly and listen freely”.
Be clear on your mission.
This is one that we're still actively working on – but when everyone knows the direction of the company (and where they fit in that direction) it is much easier to achieve your common goal.
We’ve been lucky enough to be in the top ten the last four years – but never been #1. Our goal for next year is to be at the top of the list!
(PS - Interested in joining the team? We're hiring.)