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2012 100 Best Companies best practices

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Articles - March 2012
Friday, March 02, 2012
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Lane Powell PC

Ask Lewis Horowitz, president of Lane Powell PC, about specific benefits the corporate law firm offers — discounted mortgages, ski passes, pet insurance — and you can almost hear his eyes roll.

“Most of those things are really just discounts you can secure by buying in bulk, so why wouldn’t we do it?” he says. “You don’t want to work for a firm just so you can get cheap health insurance for your dog.”

Instead, he says, if you take pay and benefits off the table, you’re left with the real attraction for working at Lane Powell.

“It’s the person sitting on either side of you,” Horowitz says. “We’ve got a spectacular group of people who want to work together for the benefit of our clients.”

Lane Powell serves a broad range of clients, from Fortune 500s to small businesses and individuals. Horowitz says that while the firm’s simple mission — helping clients — may not be the same as a nonprofit that feeds the poor, it’s nonetheless a mission that ties the staff and attorneys together.

“The culture is easy to maintain,” he says, “because most of us just want to earn a fair living, do the best we can and be a part of something that’s bigger and lasting.”

Employment Trends

For 15 of the 19 years that Oregon Business has been recognizing the best places to work, this Portland staffing company with 16 employees has been on the list.

President Tracie Basile-Cooper says a big part of that is simply that Employment Trends, which provides direct hire and temporary personnel in such fields as accounting, electronics and renewable energy, makes every effort to hire the best.

“The people who are providing our services truly care about making a great match,” she says. “They want to help companies be successful and help people find gainful employment.”

The company offers a raft of employee perks, from paid half-days off for birthdays to an eight-week paid sabbatical after seven years. But Basile-Cooper, who’s now in her 17th year with the company, says that the ways the company accommodates the personal lives of its employees — lots of hours for younger workers just starting out, more flexible schedules for employees starting families, for example — are likely the bigger draw.

“This is an organization that believes employment is a two-way street,” she says, “and we see each other through the different changes in our lives.”

 



 

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