Written by Jake Kapsner
This has been some year, eh? A year of striving for some normalcy. Some ways to stay healthy and sane. Some reasons to celebrate. That makes an announcement like this one especially meaningful for the Hailey Sault crew: we’re one of OUTSIDE Magazine’s 50 Top Places to Work 2020.
OUTSIDE says that Top Workplaces blend work and play while making healthy, fulfilling lives a priority. That’s been central to Hailey Sault’s mission and culture for decades. And while 2020 marks the third time we’ve earned the prestigious national ranking, this one’s different.
Like the rest of 2020, the celebration has been a bit tempered. We’ve taken some knocks. There’s a lot of uncertainty. And we’re concerned about the people we love and the world we live in. Surely, you can relate.
For our health care clients tasked with saving lives, or our travel clients tasked with (safely) saving jobs, we’ve been eager to do anything and everything to help. And to do that, we’ve been trying to take care of ourselves and the culture that supports great work.
Over the years, there have been a lot of sweet perks to physically working together in the main Duluth office. Like the luxuriously open floor plan with plenty of room to distance, ample natural light and unbeatable views of Lake Superior. A fitness room for meditation, yoga and workouts. Puzzle time, pingpong and dogs popping by to say “hi.”
With the pandemic, most everyone has been working remotely, while being encouraged to stay in touch with what keeps us feeling our best. Small groups are still pursuing goals and health challenges. The large group is still getting together for Friday’s “Bowl of Beer” (or nonalcoholic beverage of choice), only it’s on Zoom from our respective desks at home.
Another plus: the majority of us can now truly understand what it’s like for our peers working remotely in Richmond, Virginia, and Minneapolis-Saint Paul. We’re all in this digital reality together now.
We’ve also managed to bring more people into our corner of the world, and into some outstanding conversations. In March, Hailey Sault launched a weekly “Campfire” live webinar that brings health care and marketing professionals from around the country together to share ideas and support. A lot of support. It’s reflective of an agency culture that puts human connection first and foremost.
As one employee said in their survey response: “The feeling of being valued, respected and heard is organic here. People know we have each others’ backs and have opportunities to talk about needs and concerns in small and large meeting settings or in one-on-ones.”
Another reason we get along so well is probably the shared love of the outdoors. That’s easy in Duluth, Minnesota, which earned its own OUTSIDE ranking years ago: Best Town Ever.
Here’s to the pursuit. And to staying connected. That’s definitely worth celebrating.
About Top Workplaces
Each year, OUTSIDE recognizes Top Workplaces in the United States by gathering data about policies, practices and philosophy, then surveys all employees to hear from them directly. Top companies “are those that value productivity in combination with an active, eco-conscious lifestyle for a fulfilling experience inside and outside the workplace,” OUTSIDE says.
The complete list of OUTSIDE’s Top Places to Work 2020 is available at OutsideOnline.com. For a list of past winners and for more information on the selection process, visit Bestplacestoworkoutside.com.