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In Their Own Words

Human Resource Executive®'s exclusive list of 18 Great Companies for Millennials was drawn from employee surveys administered through the Great Place to Work Institute in San Francisco. Workers were given a chance to offer their comments in the surveys.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008
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This is a sampling of comments from the 18 to 25-year-old age group for each company on the list.

QuikTrip

"I love the fact that QT wants its employees to grow and succeed and promote within. This is because I have seen many kids timid when they first start, then a couple of years later they are confident, mature young adults, and doing serious things. Of course all the special bonuses make it very hard to leave also."

Quicken Loans

"When I was in training, it was mid-winter. On the first very cold day of the year, I had an amazing experience. I pulled into the very large parking lot and saw about eight people driving golf carts around, picking up employees. It was none other than the owner, CEO and president along with other executives of our company out there in the freezing cold picking us up and driving us to the front door. Upon walking in, there were donuts and warm apple cider waiting for us. If that's not employee appreciation, I don't know what is."

Nugget Market

"As associates of the company, we are celebrated and recognized all the time. For example, just three weeks ago many associates, including myself, were taken whitewater rafting by the company and given a full day's pay for it. There have also been other parties such as R.A.V.E., a huge five-hour party complete with food, dancing, giveaways, etc., held at [the University of California at] Davis. They also threw us a Christmas party with the same sort of things. And most importantly, if an associate is going above and beyond, then they are recognized and awarded accordingly, usually with an award of a certain amount of money. We call these the 'doers.' "

Wegmans Food Markets

"One thing that is great about this company is the training and educational opportunities. Another thing that I find amazing is how passionate employees are when it comes to serving customers and performing their jobs."

Starbucks

"When I put my heart into it and really give 100 percent, I feel extremely productive and rewarded. I have so much fun on this job and I love the people I work with! I feel totally free to be myself and be creative and have fun with my work. I believe it is specifically the people that I work with and the way this company operates that makes it such a great place to work. I really feel included, like I've been welcomed into a huge family that is all over the U.S. and anywhere I go I can find more of this family."

Fact Set Research

"We often practice team-building, since a large portion of our job is working with others. Spending time out of work in a social environment is encouraged and recognized by management as a great way of improving your skills as an employee for this company. Also, our benefits program is top notch, along with a great stock-option plan. Finally, the opportunity to move up is very high, and if there is something you would like to do but the position doesn't exist, our upper-level management will work with you to help develop a new position."

Plante & Moran

"Plante & Moran is often looking for new ways to not only improve the work environment, but also time spent outside of it. For example, we just received a new tax-free transit benefit. Additionally, P&M tries to instill a true feeling of team or family. We have our annual firm conference coming up in two weeks, and they are throwing a get-together (food, drinks, karaoke, swimming) the night before for all of the 'out of towners.' They always pick a theme for the event and base the food, decor, etc. around it. This year, for example, it's a western theme. Overall, it may be a little corny, but it really succeeds at getting people to spend time together and socialize a little before the conference. Everybody goes and always has a great time."

Google

"Aside from the sheer number of perks which everybody already knows about, one of the greatest things about working for Google is the high number of young people working here. Being a recent college graduate, I could not be happier with my working environment as I am surrounded with highly intelligent, energetic and dedicated young adults. Even the 'older' people here are kids at heart."

CarMax

"Time away from work policy instead of vacation and sick days. There is not a set amount of time you can take, you just work it out with your manager. The office's atmosphere is very bright and open. Management is very accessible and will answer any questions that you have. They encourage management throughout the company in order to give you a better overall understanding of the company."

Kimley-Horn

"There is great deal of responsibility bestowed upon all employees. This aids in excelling one's learning process and understanding of the project. This results in individuals succeeding earlier in their careers."

National Instruments

"As a new employee, I am amazed how much National Instruments allows me to contribute. After only a few months, I am able to interface daily with VPs, marketing directors and managers with little formality. I have become involved in many facets of the company due to NI's encouragement and consistent, positive feedback."

Umpqua Bank

"Umpqua Bank is a terrific place to work, and a great company to work for. I have had a unique opportunity to learn and be trained in more than just teller work. Associates at Umpqua Bank are empowered to make decisions on the spot to solve customer-service issues or just to 'delight' the customer! We have fantastic opportunities to work together, to encourage each other and to learn from each other as a team. I absolutely love to work for Umpqua Bank, a place I can be proud of and believe in."

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The Container Store

"People are encouraged and empowered to take action and make decisions. Employees are made to feel that they are the most important things in the business. We are like a family. We genuinely care for each other and have fun! I never thought I would stay in retail, but every day flies by and I learn more and more (about myself, business, management), and just have a great time at work. I look forward to and enjoy my job almost every day."

Scottrade

"At Scottrade I never feel like I have to worry about our company getting into trouble or being in the headlines for misconduct. The firm is built on integrity, honesty, customer service and treating employees great. I think I speak for a large percentage of employees when I say that you really feel like part of a family when you work here. We laugh together, cry together and celebrate whenever possible! Another great thing about Scottrade is how they care about us as individuals, not just employees. The new wellness programs, like reimbursement, presentations and contests really show that they care about our well-being at work and at home."

Chesapeake Energy

"Chesapeake has grown substantially in the past few years, but Aubrey [board chairman and CEO Aubrey McClendon] still takes the time to know all of his employees. We are also given all the resources that we need to make our jobs easier. Most of the walls are magnetic, the boardroom walls are whiteboard, and I have two computer monitors to make my job easier. Management thinks of all things from big to small to make the working environment great here."

eBay

"Managers go out of their way to help you when you are in need. When you aren't doing something right, they make sure you are instructed on the right way to do things so that further errors don't happen. They will work with you for as long as it takes before they would come to a decision to let someone go."

Marriott

"The community feeling in our office makes it fun to come to work. Marriott Vacation Club funds special committees made up of employees to plan events both at work and outside of work to help promote camaraderie between associates."

Rackspace

"I trust the management team and they are very open about every aspect of the business. Our core values are exhibited every day through our management team, which is very rare in corporate America. I also see our CEO on the floor at least once a week. The management team is approachable, no matter how long you have been a Racker. I can be myself at my job and am treated fairly regardless of how young I am. I finally feel like I have that dream job in which you are truly a member of a team and your opinion counts. I am very proud to be a Racker!"

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