For the past 13 years, the business and financial software company, Intuit, has been named a "Best Company to Work For." 

What makes Intuit such an ideal place to workI recently interviewed the Chief Talent Officer at Intuit, Rick Jensen, to explore that very question. 

1. Be explicit about mission and values

"[When hiring] ten years ago [employers] were focused 90 percent on highlighting the work and compensation; now its 65 percent of who the company is and the rest is about the actual work and compensation," says Jensen. 

"People are your most durable competitive advantage and they are looking for more beyond the work," says Jensen. Jensen encourages Intuit leaders to know the mission and values of the company and then be explicit about who they are as a company to current and potential employees.  

2. Create a community of inclusion

A few of Intuit's efforts to create communities of inclusion include eleven employee resource groups where the differences between employees are celebrated, internal forums where social and cultural issues can be freely discussed, and optional weekend camping trips that enable leaders to get to know their team beyond the work. 

Jensen understands that cultures of inclusion must go beyond programs and the leaders must behave inclusively. Jensen makes it a high priority to ensure there is margin for everyone to speak up and be heard. (Read this to learn the six steps to become an inclusive leader.)

Because of these inclusion efforts, the 2018 Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index recognized Intuit as a Best Place to Work.  

3. Innovate with the an "and"

How do organizations innovate to keep pace with the accelerating demands of future customers and employees without alienating current customers or employees? This is one of the growing challenges of the 21st-century workplace.

Jensen shared the example of an Intuit team wanting to move to all digital meetings. Knowing that might not work for other teams or individuals, Jensen used the power of "and" to create a solution for teams to meet 100 percent digitally AND to meet in-person.

"We are careful not to swing the pendulum too hard and fast one way," says Jensen. (Read this to learn why Generation Z is key to company innovation.) 

4. Focus on whole-self development  

Every month, every one of the 1,400 people managers at Intuit conducts a one-on-one meeting that focuses on the personal development goals of the employee. The goal of the conversation is to focus on what the individual is working on to develop themselves personally. 

Jensen says, "8,000 of these [meetings] happen a month." (Read this for an example of a personal growth plan for employees.)  

5. Experiment often and learn fast 

In order to deliver innovative solutions for their customer's problems, Intuit develops a clear hypothesis, experiments, and rapidly iterates their way to a helpful solution. Intuit has adapted this process that was once only for customer-facing products to now solve challenges for their people internally.  

"If we want to explore a new way to assess candidates, we'll pilot something," says Jensen. "The only failure is the failure to learn fast." 

Listen to my full interview with Rick Jensen here.

Published on: Sep 24, 2018