PPB: What’s your secret to creating a workplace where employees are happy and thriving?

Dan Halama, CEO, BrightStores, Inc.

“There are four pillars that I believe help keep employees happy and thriving: respect, care, communication and trust.

“Respect is fundamental. While our employees have similar ‘foundational’ traits, each team member is unique when it comes to their backgrounds, perspectives, passions and hobbies. Our differences are a good thing and help us look at all the angles and see the big picture. We respect each other in who we are and what we do. There is no judging.

“We offer free snacks and a game room for employees to refuel and unwind. Performance and compensation are important, but there is so much more than that. I genuinely care about each person in our company and make a conscious effort to show employees this. I ask about their personal lives without being intrusive (see respect) and we celebrate things like home purchases, marriages, childbirths, kids’ graduations and little things like new puppies or old dogs, milestones and more.

Communication And Trust
“Clear expectations and open communication are essential because those two things generally lead to healthy, trusting relationships. When people have a good understanding of expectations, they are empowered and better prepared to thrive.

“Ultimately, I think it starts with hiring the right people. We look for people that have found happiness in their lives and strive to excel at what they do. These are people that have the ability and motivation to do the job well without excess stress or burnout which helps create a culture that is happy and thriving.”