Work Skills Corporation has been recognized as one of Crain’s “Cool Places to Work in Michigan”.

The announcement was made recently by Crain’s Detroit Business in partnership with Best Companies Group. Work Skills Corporation is headquartered in Brighton and the non-profit provides employment and training services to individuals with disabilities and barriers to employment. Around that, Work Skills has six distinct divisions that additionally provide services to youth, adults and employers in the areas of employment and training, home health care, secondary education, staffing, production and residential services. Corporately, WSC focuses on an individual’s abilities rather than his or her disabilities.

The Crain’s award recognizes employers that go the extra mile to make employees feel appreciated—as judged by the employees themselves. As one of the 100 companies selected, the award recognizes Work Skills for building an enviable workplace that includes flexibility, empowerment and effective relationships. Organizations from across the state entered the two-part assessment coupled by an employer benefits and policies questionnaire and an employee engagement and satisfaction survey. The employee survey is the heaviest weighted portion - which drives 75% of the ranking. WSC President Tina Jackson says they believe using innovation, flexibility and creativity as a workplace strategy increases the success of their employees, collective team, clients and ultimately, their company.

WSC Human Resources Manager Kelly Blair says it’s great to be recognized for being a cool place to work with flexible initiatives and workplace balance but it’s even cooler to have it be validated by all the employees as they are the driving force behind the award. Blair says because they do so many different things, they have a very eclectic workforce and strive to have strong communication mechanisms in place and open dialogue. She tells WHMI the core of it all has to do with the fact they are such a mission based organization – adding everything is tied together to help people optimize potential, celebrate accomplishments and recognize everyone’s efforts because it’s a lot of hard work to get everything done. Blair noted they try to infuse fun where they can through company barbecues, massage days and potlucks – all different things employees are requesting and say they’re interested in doing. She says they also do a lot of surveys and focus groups to see what’s working or what’s not and what employees like. More details can be found through the provided link. (JM)