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What Makes Schwab a Great Place to Work

January 25, 2013

Originally published on the Schwab Talk Blog Posted by Sarah Bulgatz

Schwab was one of 27 companies recently awarded the annual Gallup Great Workplace Award. According to Gallup, the award honors “organizations whose employee engagement results demonstrate they have the most productive and engaged workforces in the world.” Schwab Senior Vice President of Talent Management Mary Coughlin shared her perspective on what makes Schwab a great place to work, as well as what she sees are the challenges and opportunities in maintaining a high level of workplace engagement.

SB:  First off, why don’t we start by defining “employee engagement,” which might sound to some people like a buzz-phrase. How would you characterize it for Schwab?

MC:  Every company will define engagement in their own way. To define it loosely, I’d say it’s what gets us going in the morning and energizes us about coming in to work every day. I think of “engagement” as the spark that inspires and motivates employees to achieve their best and deliver a great experience for our clients.

SB:  In your opinion, what are the greatest opportunities for employee engagement, and how does Schwab tackle them?

MC:  It’s critical for employees to feel connected to our company’s strategy and values, which center on the service we deliver to our clients. We believe that strengthening employee engagement will further fuel this passion for serving our clients. Engagement also fosters an environment where innovation and collaboration flourish across the organization. Combined, these elements enable us to deliver the great client experience we’ve come to be known for, the strong business results that follow from that, and help us differentiate Schwab as an employer to attract the best talent in a very competitive environment.

SB:  What do you think makes Schwab a great place to work?

MC:  I have to bring it back to the enduring commitment we have to serving our clients, one another and our communities. Of course, we have a core suite of benefits and development opportunities that we believe are as good or better than other firms that want to keep talent. But you have to look beyond the benefits to get to the heart of what makes any company a great place to work and what motivates employees here is the sense that their work matters. Our company’s culture is also critically important to what makes us a great place to work; employees believe in the value and impact of what they do day to day, as well as the vision, values and ethics of the organization. There is a very strong sense of community as a result. Finally, senior leadership and management at all levels take an active and open approach to communication and engagement which helps bring everyone together and ensures we’re in alignment on priorities.

SB:  How does diversity figure in to the mix?

MC:  Diversity and inclusion are core elements of our culture, transcending ethnicity, race, gender, age, experience and perspective. We believe that diversity helps optimize individual, team and organizational performance and enables the firm to deliver an exceptional client experience. Like engagement, valuing diversity and the strengths of every employee fosters innovation that helps Schwab deliver an exceptional client experience. In that regard, we are proactive about attracting talent from a variety of cultures, such as the military. And, we are grateful that our efforts there have been recently recognized as well.

For additional information on Schwab’s workplace as well as job opportunities, visit bit.ly/CSBCAZ

 

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