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More Than Money Driving Employees

As we race toward the new millennium, we have to begin to focus on new budgets and their impact on our teams.

There is no denying the fact that l999 will turn out to be the best year in most companies’ history. The obvious question is, how do we beat l999’s numbers?

We beat ’99 by keying on how we retain and motivate our teams. It is imperative that we find some way to ensure that our employees are happy and operating at full capacity.

One of the new buzzwords we are beginning to hear is work-life balance. The engine that is driving this phrase is the robust economy and the 3 percent unemployment rate locally. The competition is getting keener every day for the best employees to put on our company payroll.

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The Work-Life Coalition of San Diego last week honored the best companies to work for in the county. Their judging revolved around eight key criteria.

The categories were: benefits, workplace culture, wellness, work-time options, career management, maternal and infant care, child care assistance, and elder care. The winners were selected based on how a company scored in each category. The nominees were primarily for-profit companies (78 percent) with median revenues of $10 million. Most were medium-sized firms (64 percent) having 50 to 500 employees. The median was 128 employees. The proportion of women in the participating companies averaged 48 percent, with a range of 7 percent to 93 percent.

Sixty employers representing more than 42,000 employees provided the answers to the coalition’s questions. You can tell from the categories what the judges were looking for in selecting the winners. The bottom line is that employees in 2000 and beyond want more than money. They want to be empowered to make decisions and feel like they play a vital role in the success of the business.

The winners were:

Benefits , UCSD and Qualcomm, Inc.

Work-time options , City of Escondido

Wellness , Alaris Corp.

Career development , U.S. Postal Service

Maternal and infant care , City of Escondido

Child care , Prestigious Door and Gate

Elder care , Qualcomm, Inc.

Workplace culture , Alaris Corp.

The winners by size were:

Under 50 employees , Prestigious Door and Gate

Up to 500 employees , San Diego County Health Services

Over 500 employees , UCSD and Qualcomm, Inc.

It goes without saying that while pay is high, there are other categories that teams and companies ask for in order to be successful. The awards listed above signify what people want today to get them to stay put and maximize their performance.

To the balance sheet.

Credit: To Medinox Inc. for snatching a Nobel Prize-winner for its scientific advisory board. In order to be successful in a very competitive biotech industry, Dr. Monte Lai, president and CEO of Medinox, has announced the recruitment of Dr. Ferid Murad, who is both an M.D. and a Ph.D., to his board. Murad was awarded the Nobel Prize in l998 for physiology/medicine for his work in discovering nitric oxide as a signaling molecule in humans. Medinox is developing innovative nitric oxide-neutralizing pharmaceutical technologies to treat diseases and conditions associated with overproduction of nitric oxide. While money is important , they have raised more than $13 million in private equity financing , they also know that brain power is equally if not more important to success. Congratulations to Dr. Lai on his new Nobel laureate.

Credit: To Dr. Alex Gonzalez, president of Cal State San Marcos, for announcing plans for its new $45 million library on the new campus. The l98,000-square-foot, five-story building is beginning to become reality due to a $1.5 million grant from W. Keith Kellogg and his wife, Jean. The Kellogg name is familiar to most Americans who have grown up eating Kellogg’s cereal products. At completion, the library will house nearly 500,000 volumes. Thanks to the Kellogg family, the library is nearing reality for the school’s growing student populatio

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