While Walker is not a perfect company, I have been doing this for 10 years and have yet to find a perfect company, I think there are several things Walker does that other companies could learn from. I have already covered the Paid Time Off Policy and the work itself. In this blog, I am going to cover a potpourri of small things that all contribute to the overall culture of Walker.
First is the flex-time. At Walker, most of us can pretty much come and go as we please. As long as we are hitting our goals of client related work and our clients our happy, we can come and go as we please. Having three kids and one on the way, I cannot tell you what a blessing it is when something comes up at home to know I can leave and take care of my personal matters. I recognize I need to make sure my work is done but it is such a relief to know I have that flexibility.
Second are the free drinks. This seems like one of those small, silly things but I do believe it helps contribute to the culture here. Walker has free coffee (Starbuck's and Seattle's Best) along with free Pepsi products. I do not drink coffee or too many Pepsi products except for Mountain Dew. I firmly believe Mountain Dew is the nectar of the gods and drink way too much of it. Maybe this is not such a perk since every evening I have a major sugar crash.
Third is the dress code. Walker has a casual dress code, which basically means wear a nice shirt and jeans. There are times where I need to dress up and actually wear a shirt and tie probably at least once a week. It is sure nice if I do not have any client facing meetings to know I can wear something really comfortable to work. I know some companies are moving back to a more formal dress code as they feel it helps the employees have a more professional attitude and be more focused. For me, I am very comfortable and relaxed in jeans and feel more productive because I am more comfortable. If I could wear shorts and a t-shirt, I would do it in a second, which is probably a large reason why that is not allowed.
Fourth is the attitude of Senior Leaders. All of the Senior Leaders are very approachable and down to earth. That may seem like something that is very common, but having dealt with many Senior Leaders, I can assure you that is not the case. They all say they have an open door policy, which is often talked about but rarely practiced. I really feel like I can go to any of them at any time and ask them a question. They also know us on a personal level. For example, I was talking to a Senior Leader a couple of weeks ago and he remembered how many kids I had, that we were foster parents, that we home school, and that my wife is a stay at home mom. I was actually surprised because they have so many important things to keep track of, to remember intimate details of my family meant a lot. This also makes me feel comfortable going to them with new thoughts and ideas as I know they will listen.