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On the Scene: 100 Best Companies awards

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On the Scene
Friday, March 04, 2011

By Emma Hall


The No. 1 top medium business: Microsoft.

After making it through the worst years of the down economy, it’s nice to celebrate business in Oregon being on the upswing.

On March 3, more than 800 smiling faces gathered in the Portland Ballroom at the Oregon Convention Center to celebrate the best workplaces in Oregon. It was the 18th 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon event put on by Oregon Business magazine.

“This event and our coverage in the magazine is our way of saying thank you for creating jobs,” Editor Robin Doussard said.

Based on anonymous surveys submitted by more than 14,000 employees from 263 companies, the annual event celebrates the little things that add up to make a great workplace. This year, that included everything from health insurance to an overwhelming number of massage perks—something we’re definitely pushing for here at our own workplace.

Emcee Geoff Norcross, host of OPB’s Morning Edition, declared the quote of the night “Wine: I could get into that,” from the video presented featuring interviews with employees from some of the top companies. If you missed it, watch the video below.

Over stuffed chicken and garlic mashed potatoes, attendees heard the keynote address from Lisa Sedlar, CEO of local favorite New Seasons Market, which also happens to be ranked the No. 17 Best Large Company this year. Sedlar described how her company strives to be different, which even includes an internal minimum wage of $10 an hour. She explained that New Seasons’ employees include people from all walks of life. “Vegan, gluten-free; heck, we even have meat-eaters,” she joked.

3 of the 40 Ruby Receptionists in attendance.

Awards to the top 10 companies were announced by Oregon Business Publisher Andrew Insigna, Robin Doussard, and Managing Editor Ben Jacklet. Excited whispers and loud whoops escaped throughout the ballroom as employees realized their workplaces were being honored—the 40 employees of Ruby Receptionists in attendance even somehow managed to realize their win within the first sentence describing the company. The Top 10 companies honored were:

Top Small:

  1. Pittman & Brooks PC
  2. Slalom Consulting
  3. Point B

Top Medium:

  1. Microsoft
  2. Ruby Receptionists
  3. Digimarc Corp.
  4. Barran Liebman LLP

Top Large:

  1. Kimpton Portland
  2. Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront
  3. Carr Auto Group

From excited cheers and high-fives (Ruby Receptionists) to playful jabs at the competition (Slalom Consulting), the Top 10 companies came onstage to celebrate their wins and accept trophies. Then, boxes of the March issue of Oregon Business magazine were delivered to attendees, featuring the full list of 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon.

Whether they offer gym memberships or allow dogs in the office, every company on the 100 Best list is creating a workplace that actually makes people want to come into the office each day—and afterall, when it comes down to it, happy employees mean successful companies.

Emma Hall is web editor for Oregon Business magazine.



Jill Nelson
0 #1 Thank you Oregon BusinessJill Nelson 2011-03-04 14:12:10
Thank you to the wonderful people at Oregon Business who put on a spectacular celebration last night. This morning, our entire staff was glowing in praise of the event.

I was particularly inspired by Lisa Sedler's keynote, on the culture and history of New Seasons. The "get out of jail" free cards - what a fun way to instill confidence in your employees!

We appreciate you putting on this event every year and encouraging us to partipate. It helps us focus on what is important as an employer, and gives us ideas and feedback on how we can continue to be better.

One last shout out - thank you to Mt. Hoood Meadows for the super fun ski trip!

Jill Nelson, President, Ruby Receptionists
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