5 Personal Website Examples To Boost Your Brand

Whether you want to showcase your resume, writing samples, photography projects, accolades and awards, or simply become a “Google-able” job candidate, you’ll need to create a personal website. A recent study conducted by GoDaddy revealed the importance of a thorough online profile in the hiring process. Overall, 76% of hiring managers regularly check the social media and online presence of candidates. More than 60% of millennial hiring managers said having a website or online portfolio is important for candidates. However, only 32% of graduates actually have an online portfolio to display their work. personal website examples

Best Personal Website Examples To Boost Your Brand

The following personal website examples will help you keep your work-related materials all in one place. At the same time, they allow you to express your personality in the online sphere.

Tinseled Pink

Arizona-based blogger Tamara Kraus curates her blog, Tinseled Pink, with a consistent theme and an easy-to-navigate interface. The site stays organized by tabbed categories — “About,” “Blog,” “Contact,” “Camera,” “Editorial,” “In The Media” — which make it simple for employers to research potential job candidates. Tinseled Pink is centered primarily around fashion and beauty, but it’s one of the top Arizona-based personal website examples to get inspiration from when designing your own online portfolio.

Dash of Daisy

Taylor Seely is another blogger based in Arizona. Her blog, Dash of Daisy, encompasses a range of content geared toward a comprehensive online portfolio. Its lifestyle branding is consistent throughout — making it one of the coolest personal website examples to help you boost your own brand. Dash of Daisy’s layout is an excellent format for job seekers to organize their work and credentials.

Tym Andrews

With a sleek, simple and aesthetically pleasing blog, Tym Andrews puts his own creative spin on an online resume/portfolio. Using “About Me,” “Testimonies” (with a subheader “What’s it like to work with me?” — filled with past employer recommendations), “Just For Fun” (a category with fun facts about Tym), and “Contact Me,” he makes the site simple to navigate, fresh and fun. He also includes social media links at the bottom of the site. With everything in one place and Tym’s knack for keeping any visitor’s interest piqued, this blog encapsulates one of the top personal website examples that offer brand inspiration.

Colin Grist

Colin Grist presents his blog on a classic white interface with black text, but he also adds splashes of color for his various projects and endeavors. His contact information, social media links, and the menu are all easy to find. This website design has the menu button in the top right corner, which would open the door for you, when designing your own site, to add buttons for your resume, portfolio, and other items you’d feel are necessary to show a potential employer.

Olivia Lehmann

Opening the homepage with a portrait on a white background, Olivia Lehmann leverages an immediate call-to-action for site visitors. Choose from two buttons: English or Français. Before clicking through any of the rest of her profile, you must choose your preferred site language and you can click on her social media links. After selecting English or French, you can read her bio, personal fun facts, work experience, education, and contact info. The scrolling interface is visually appealing and her areas of expertise are laid out for employers to easily understand.

Do you already have a personal website? If so, did it help you land a job? What other personal website examples have you seen that have caught your attention? Let us know on our social channels — find BestCompaniesAZ on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram!

Introducing The Best of Star: Companies That Shine

Stars send their own light, generated from within and shining bright in our night sky. The 100 Best Arizona Companies Best of Star winners are companies that shine and are described as:

At the height of their powerful success, these companies are masters of their fields, inspiring confidence in customers and employees alike.

Here are a few nuggets of wisdom from five of the Best of Star companies:

Axon

Axon Best of Star WinnerWith a vision bigger than just cameras or weapons, Axon (former Taser) works every day to make the bullet obsolete. “Protect Life” is much more than a tagline, it’s the mission that drives Axon employees.

That mission spurs people on, whether they are writing code or launching new devices. Axon employees view their careers as much more than jobs; they are able to tell stories illustrating how body-worn video could possibly quell civil unrest, and of how TASER smart weapons can actually de-escalate force.  No wonder Axon employees believe their company is a great place to make a difference. Axon, for its part, recognizes the hard work and responsibility of all Axon employees, and gives back by focusing on employee happiness and unique perks.

Better Business Bureau of Greater Arizona

Better Business Bureau Torch Awards for Ethics

Better Business Bureau (BBB) not only has high ethical standards, they set them. For over 100 years, BBB has helped people make smarter decisions and is evolving to meet fast changing marketplace needs.

Through various programs, BBB reinforces the importance of ethical business practices creating a community of trustworthy businesses. One of the programs is the BBB Torch Awards for Ethics, which recognizes companies for ethics in leadership, communication, performance management, human resources, and commitment to the community. The BBB Business & Community Center is another resource that provides meeting space for those looking to collaborate in a trusted space.

BBB believes in giving back to the communities they serve and offers employees a paid day off a quarter to support a local charity of their choice.

GEICO

A key to GEICO’s strength is developing careers for those who start at entry level. Nearly 80% of the management team started at entry level, including the CEO, so they have a proven track record of success at helping employees develop.

This success is partly due to the accelerated Management Development Program GEICO has created for entry-level college grads. The goal of this 1.5 – 3 year management training program is to develop future business leaders to help GEICO continue on the path of steady growth, profitability and success. The program involves training, mentoring, and real-world experience.

Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart P.C.

Ogletree Deakins Best of StarOgletree Deakins is one of the largest labor and employment law firms representing management in all types of employment-related legal matters. Premier client service, as outlined in the firm’s Client Pledge, is one of the firm’s top priorities and a cornerstone of its core values. The firm represents a diverse range of clients, from small businesses to Fortune 50 companies.

Ogletree Deakins believes that professional development, diversity, and inclusion are integral to their outstanding performance and exceptional client service. They are committed to having a highly talented, vibrant workforce that reflects the growing diversity of our communities and our clients, and that can bring their diverse talent to bear on all client matters.

Stryker Sustainability Solutions

At Stryker, diversity and inclusion drive achievement. By encouraging and valuing the diversity of people, perspectives, experiences and lifestyles, the company can enjoy maximum business performance. Stryker promotes creativity by recruiting people who are invested in working toward a greater cause – making healthcare better. The company helps thousands of healthcare facilities become more financially and environmentally sustainable by saving them millions in supply costs and diverting millions of pounds of waste from landfills each year.

A strengths-based organization, Stryker embraces unique strengths and experiences, providing employees the opportunity to fortify and grow their talents and enjoy dynamic career opportunities. At Stryker, employees have the opportunity to develop careers based on strengths and potential, including the possibility to move geographically, functionally, laterally and vertically.

Congratulations to these additional Best of Star winners: Camden Property Trust,
CopperPoint Insurance Companies, Cresa, Fennemore Craig, General Motors Company, GM Financial, Kitchell, Paychex, PING, Inc., The Plaza Companies, Pollack Investments, Protiviti, Sonora Quest Laboratories, Sundt Construction, Synchrony Financial.

A strong mission, a top-notch training program, and a commitment to the community can go a long way in making a corporation shine!

Be in the know with the 100 Best Arizona Companies through our bi-monthly eNews featuring insights into what makes these companies so great. Sign up today!

What other companies with heart would you add to the list? Let us know!

 

5 Tips For Managing Conflict In The Workplace

Conflict in the workplace can either cripple a company’s productivity, or serve as a conduit for enhanced performance. If approached correctly and mindfully, conflict has the potential to actually nurture a positive company culture.

Workplace misunderstandings and squabbles should always be faced head-on. Employers who attempt to quell possible conflict by ignoring it often suffer negative consequences. Nothing will be accomplished in the workplace by pretending dissension does not exist. Rather, by coming to terms with and developing a plan of action for said conflicts, employers can increase productivity and overall contentment for their employees.

Tips For Managing Conflict In The Workplace

1. Define behavioral expectations.

Clearly setting boundaries and expectations for your fellow coworkers helps create a positive workplace culture. People tend to be more successful when expectations are clearly outlined. Thus, by establishing a series of specific rules to adhere to, conflict can potentially be minimized and/or avoided. Assumptions only deter productivity — that’s why it’s important to be as specific as possible when it comes to establishing expectations.

2. Develop a plan of action.

Conflict in the workplace requires action. By developing a plan of action, you can solve the problem at hand and stifle the situation. This practice also sets a great example for your employees. If they see you care enough about the issue to take action, they’ll feel encouraged to then follow your lead and find other possible solutions.

Amy Lieberman, Executive Director of Insight Mediation and leading authority on workplace conflict, stresses that every company should focus on developing “conflict competency” skills in their managers and supervisors.  While larger organizations may benefit from adopting dispute resolution polices which incorporate mediation of interpersonal conflict, all companies regardless of size can obtain the training and conflict coaching needed to prevent and resolve conflict.

3. Empathize and learn their language.

Everyone has a different way of communicating in the workplace, and it is the employer’s job to properly assess their needs and empathize with them as much as possible. By learning how the employee expresses himself or herself, the employer can adapt to that communication style, and effectively interact beyond surface level.

4. Pick your battles.

It is important to keep in mind that not every fight deserves attention. Look at the grand scheme of things, and determine whether a conflict in the workplace is worth bringing to light. It’s critical to ignore petty situations. Calling attention to unimportant issues may cause your employees to lose respect for you, especially if unwarranted drama arises because of it. However, if the issue is important enough, people will take necessary measures to resolve it. If you pinpoint a constant source of petty conflict in the workplace, it may be time to hold a frank discussion or terminate a toxic team member’s employment.

5. Act, don’t react.

It sounds intuitive, but thinking before speaking often slips through the cracks at work. Choose your words and actions carefully, and act accordingly — even if an employee might act in a way that’s frustrating or overtly confrontational. If you take the time to consider a situation and create a solution rather than letting your emotions overwhelm you, you’ll create a healthier and more welcoming environment for everyone.

When dealing with conflict in the workplace, remember to listen and learn. Just because someone’s opinion differs from yours doesn’t mean it is wrong. Dealing with conflict ultimately involves practice in empathy, patience, dedication, humility, and respect. Understand that overcoming challenges requires cooperation and compromise. It creates a healthy workplace environment that encourages dialogue and discourse. Open communication can increase efficiency and productivity, as well as foster a company culture that people will want to join.

What other tips for managing conflict in the workplace would you add? Let us know, and be sure to follow BestCompaniesAZ on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn and Instagram!

Best Company Career Websites To Check Out

Not only do the best company career websites offer employment opportunities — they’re often also elegantly arranged, informative and offer job seekers a peek into their culture. Take a look at some of the most helpful and aesthetically pleasing career pages. Afterward, perhaps you’ll submit your resume and cover letter!

Best Company Career Websites To Check Out

Quarles & Brady

With one of the best company career websites out there, Quarles & Brady makes it simple for job applicants to navigate — with tabs for “The Q&B Experience,” “Law Students,” “Attorneys” and “Other Professionals.” They introduce the careers page with a peek into their culture, and they also explain that they also offer openings for paralegals, legal secretaries, IT engineers, accountants, human resources and marketing professionals. A great culture and great career options also makes Quarles & Brady one of the 100 Best Arizona Companies.

Vanguard

The Vanguard careers page offers a range of options for job seekers — including a Talent Community Email Signup, the chance to chat online with a recruiter, and also discover their “Client Relationship Specialist Opportunities.” The page also walks job seekers through their mission, history, values, culture and perks. Explore career opportunities by clicking on “Working At Vanguard,” “Job Areas,” and “Students/Recent Graduates.” The interface is smooth, simple and clearly explains the benefits of working at Vanguard.

Dignity Health

As one of the 100 Best Arizona Companies, Dignity Health also offers a careers page that makes it user-friendly. “Work at the heart of humankindess. Whether you’re a current employee or a new candidate, Dignity Health has 39 hospitals and more than 400 care centers. These range throughout California, Arizona, and Nevada. Find your opportunity and check back often to see what’s new.” There’s a portal for job seekers who already work at Dignity as well as new applicants.

Charles Schwab

As one of the best company career websites, the Schwab jobs page immediately makes it clear that they care about their employees. Under the “Where Could You Fit In?” header, you’ll find a range of roles — not solely in the financial realm. Scroll down, and you’ll discover more about their mission, values and culture, and also an events calendar to stay connected. Thanks to their aesthetically pleasing and user-friendly careers page — and their commitment to hiring great people — Schwab is also one of Arizona’s 100 Best Companies.

Endurance International Group

Boldly stated at the top of their careers page: “YOUR (em)POWERED JOURNEY STARTS HERE.” As an applicant scrolls down, there are images of the team at each of their offices around the country. Hover over each image — and you’ll learn the current temperature in each city. You can also click on “Search Job Openings” for your desired city. It’s an extremely appealing, exciting careers page — and the same goes for the company itself!

Homeowners Financial Group

Spread across the top of Homeowners Financial Group’s careers page are the words “The Happiest Place in Mortgage” in Disney font — and it makes sense why! “Would you like to be a ‘homie?’ That’s what we call our staff and partners here at Homeowners Financial Group. We are a close knit family dedicated to our business. But we are also dedicated to creating a family-oriented, productive and caring work environment.”

CBRE

Between their Employee Advantage tagline and their “RISE” values of Respect, Integrity, Service and Excellence, CBRE has one of the best company career websites for applicants to utilize. From roles in sales and IT to engineering and security, there’s a place for you within CBRE’s talented, worldwide team.

So, what other best company career websites would you add to this list? Let us know! Also, if you’re on the job hunt, consider applying for a job opening with one of Arizona’s award-winning companies.

Be sure to follow BestCompaniesAZ on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram!

Best Company Descriptions That’ll Inspire You To Apply Now

You’ve always been advised never to judge a book by its cover. But when it comes to the job search, companies who put their best foot forward (through their perks, social media accounts, culture and so forth) tend to garner the most applicants. Read through some of the best company descriptions that also come from the 100 Best Arizona Companies. Then, submit your application, as some of these organizations may have openings calling your name!

Best Company Descriptions That’ll Inspire You To Apply Now

Shutterfly

At Shutterfly, Inc., our vision is to make the world a better place by helping people share life’s joy. Through our portfolio of premium lifestyle brands – Shutterfly, Tiny Prints, Wedding Paper Divas, BorrowLenses, MyPubisher, and Groovebook – our mission is to deepen your personal connections with the people who matter most with unique, personalized photo products. We enrich the lives of millions by inspiring you to be creative in how you preserve your memories and share your stories. Our brands share a common vision that allows us to help you make memorable moments last a lifetime.

Together, we are Shutterfly, Inc.

The Lavidge Company

An independently owned, award-winning marketing agency that exists to make uncommonly good work for companies – so companies can make an uncommon amount of friends and money. We use every experience, tool, trend, skill and insight at our disposal to create immediate and lasting connections between brands and human beings. And we do it with a bigger smile than most.

Our signature positivity and camaraderie is an extension of our ownership. You’ll see it throughout this site, in our work and in every LAVIDGIAN who problem solves on your behalf.

We invite you to explore these pages – made with love and attention – to see the thinking and culture that set us apart. If you’re so moved, you can contact us at this overtly underlined link. Thanks for visiting. We hope to see you soon and often.

Hyatt Regency Phoenix

We believe great hotels in Phoenix should offer more than a good night’s sleep, and we take pride in offering the best of everything – great restaurants, luxurious rooms and unparalleled service. We offer an engaging work place in a prime location – a sophisticated southwest urban hotel located in the epicenter of Phoenix’s attractions and activities. Our Phoenix hotel features a refreshing outdoor swimming pool, 24-hour StayFit™ Gym, and complete “mobile office” services to keep you productive during your stay. With over 48,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor function space, HyattRegency Phoenix is a spectacular venue for memorable meetings and events.

Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen)

The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization focused on developing earlier diagnostics and smarter treatments.

Translational genomics research is a relatively new field employing innovative advances arising from the Human Genome Project and applying them to the development of diagnostics, prognostics and therapies for cancer, neurological disorders, diabetes and other complex diseases.

For the first time in history, we now have the knowledge to unravel the genetic components of common and complex diseases. The increased understanding of molecular medicine is shifting clinical practice from treatment based on symptoms to treatment based on the underlying causes of disease. Physicians will be prescribing drugs that are designed more intelligently, work more effectively, and have fewer toxic side effects.

The mapping of the human genome was only the first step. Researchers are now working to translate variations in human genes to discover the underlying cause of disease progression and resistance to therapy and why some individuals encounter debilitating diseases and others live healthy lives. Although all the puzzle pieces of our genetic make-up have been identified, scientists and clinicians now have the formidable task of interpreting how they fit together in order to apply the genome map to patient care.

TGen is on the cutting edge of translational research where investigators are able to unravel the genetic components of common and complex diseases. Working with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities, TGen believes it can make a substantial contribution to the efficiency and effectiveness of the translational process. TGen’s vision is of a world where an understanding of genomic variation can be rapidly translated to the diagnosis and treatment of disease in a manner tailored to individual patients.

TGen is dedicated to the next revolution in health care. With the patient at its helm, TGen is guided by three core principles: integrate, translate and accelerate.

USAA

USAA provides insurance, banking, investments, retirement products and advice to more than 11 million members. We’re known for our legendary commitment to our members, and are consistently recognized for outstanding service, financial strength and employee well-being.

If you liked these best company descriptions, consider applying — many of the 100 Best Arizona Companies have job openings. Be sure to follow BestCompaniesAZ on Facebook,  TwitterLinkedIn and Instagram!

Progrexion Has a Special Formula for Giving Back: Stronger Communities = Better Workplaces

Progrexion, a leading provider of credit report repair services for consumers in the U.S., is celebrating an important year of growth and giving. Within the next few months, the company will reach the milestone of donating $1 million since launching its Charitable Giving Initiatives in 2012. In less than six years, Progrexion has not only raised more than $900,000 for local charities, but it is well on track to sail past its goal of reaching $1million in 2017 – months ahead of schedule.

Because Progrexion is focused on helping consumers improve their credit, it only follows that employees would want to extend a helping hand within their own communities, where they live and work. By actively engaging in community service projects, employees grow personally, gain leadership skills and become more connected to those around them.

Local communities are healthier when companies give back

Progrexion 5 Years of Giving

Click to enlarge image

The 1,500 individuals employed by Progrexion’s offices in Arizona, Utah, Idaho and Oklahoma contribute the bulk of their charitable giving through group activities organized by Progrexion, often on company time that is compensated. The “spirit of giving” is a fundamental part of Progrexion’s corporate culture; it is safe to state that employees grow their own careers while growing goodwill in the communities around them.

The Progrexion culture inspires employees to participate in giving programs held throughout the year. Progrexion attributes its success to employees who spend countless hours providing top-level service to consumers, and, outside of work, generously helping improve the lives of individuals and families in need of a helping hand.

Celeste Edmunds, Progrexion’s Director of Corporate Communications & Community Relations, states, “We believe our community giving program links our success as market leaders in the credit industry with the well-being of those in need by empowering employees, connecting individuals and creating results that are impactful and long lasting. In that regard, we continue to be an active and visible force for fundamentally bettering our world.”

Career Growth While Making a Difference

In the 17 years since it opened its doors, Progrexion has become an employer of choice and has won many awards and accolades for its care for employees. Most recently, Progrexion was named one of BestCompaniesAZ’s 2017 “100 Best Arizona Companies” and was additionally recognized in the “Best of Heart” category. This designation means that this select group of employers is honored for building relationships with employees, consumers and their communities, and are recognized by BestCompaniesAZ for showing how much they care.

By way of example, Progrexion employees contributed the following to their local communities last year:

  • Donated 319 units of blood to the American Red Cross, roughly benefiting 957 lives
  • Donated $89,194 and 7,387 pounds of food to local food banks
  • Mentored, educated and raised $56,650 for low-income children through Big Brothers Big Sisters local chapters
  • Dedicated 6,000 hours to pack more than 80,000 meal kits for Stop Hunger Now
  • Volunteered 998 hours, walked 199 miles and donated $5,415 to Relay for Life
  • Donated $85,015 to various charitable efforts such as The Road Home, Homeward Bound, the Salvation Army, No Bully and Primary Children’s Medical Center

Jeff Johnson, Progrexion CEO, sums it up by stating, “There is no doubt in our minds that community outreach and support has positively contributed to our growth as individuals, as professionals and as a company.”

Learn more about Progrexion’s culture, community outreach and career opportunities here.

How To Choose A Career: 4 Questions To Ask Yourself

Whether you’re fresh out of college or you’ve been in the workforce and are looking to make a major career shift, the following guide will help you decide your next move. Ask yourself these four questions — and you’ll be on your way to a rewarding, successful work life. When it comes to how to choose a career, here’s everything you need to know.

How To Choose A Career: 4 Questions To Ask Yourself

What does my career assessment say?

Google the term “career assessment” and you’ll return a lot of results. Do they really work? Should you dole out money to take multiple online career quizzes? Clearly, there’s a major market for career aptitude tests. However, many are unproven and expensive. That’s why you should test out inexpensive/free ones when it comes to how to choose a career.

One great option? John Holland’s SDS (Self Directed Search) — an assessment that helps determine potential roles as well as aligning office environments and company cultures based on your personality type.

This test is based on the scientific findings of award-winning psychologist John Holland, who devised the “Holland Codes,” a system that fits people into one of six categories: Doers, Thinkers, Creators, Helpers, Persuaders and Organizers. Each category connects to a variety of career routes. The test costs $9.95, but if it helps you pinpoint your life’s calling, chances are you won’t regret the purchase.

What do you know about yourself?

It’s important to understand your own strengths, values, personality and skills when it comes to how to choose a career. This will help you determine which career best aligns with your interests and talents.

Have you spoken with a career coach? 

Typically, those who enlist the help of a career coach are frustrated by a lengthy period of job searching without seeing results. Why wait? Try to get in touch with a career coach early on in your journey. You’ll generally have a better chance at working in a field that resonates with you if you seek a career coach’s help before the job search completely saps your motivation.

How might a career coach help? Well, it’s their job to find you a meaningful, fitting career.

These individuals are usually experts at networking. That’s why they can frequently access resources you may not discover without their help.

Career coaches could average around $150 an hour. That can be discouraging and wallet-draining. However, you can visit your college’s career center for free advice. Counselors there are specially trained to assist you in finding your passion.

Who inspires you?

If you’re unsure about your career, it’s crucial that you set up informational interviews with professionals across various industries to find out firsthand what their jobs entail. Sit down with each person and ask the important questions to garner honest feedback. This is a top tip in how to choose a career — as it also fosters networking right out of the gate. When someone devotes their time to you, they then become invested in your success.

So, how do you know who to contact? Start with people who already know you — perhaps a supervisor, professor, mentor or someone you already know working in a field you’re potentially interested in. Also, never hesitate to reach out to anyone you don’t know. Be willing to learn. Chatting with new faces allows you to also grow as a networker and boosts your confidence in speaking.

If nothing else, you’ll probably get some reassurance that your current path isn’t as aimless as you might assume. While your first job or career jump is important, it’s not the end-all-be-all of your life. Ask any baby boomer how they got to where they are now — they’ll probably tell you it was a long, meandering road of diverse roles.

So, what other tips for how to choose a career would you add to this list? Let us know — and if you’re on the job hunt, consider applying for a job opening with one of Arizona’s award-winning companies.

Be sure to follow BestCompaniesAZ on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram!

Best Workplace Awards: You Won! Now What?

You’ve probably considered how the best workplace awards can boost your employer brand efforts. Here’s some good news – it may be easier than you think. Maybe you already have an award or two. Or, maybe you haven’t jumped into the nomination process yet but are thinking about it.

We’d like to share a simple but valuable pro tip to help you maximize the value of workplace awards: don’t let rankings become an obstacle to your efforts.

How To Approach Striving For & Earning Best Workplace Awards

There are dozens of workplace awards designed to recognize excellence in various areas, such as culture, growth, ethics, and innovation. Specific industries may be spotlighted, such as healthcare, banking or advertising. General workplace culture awards may be local or national in scope, typically categorized according to size.

Enter the black fly in the chardonnay: rankings. Rankings are common in award programs, with the winner of the coveted #1 spot enjoying much prestige. In the minds of many, achieving anything other than the #1 ranking diminishes the value of the award. When can you say, “We won”? Is it when you make the top 10? Top five? Or is only the #1 spot truly worthy of publicity and pride?

Look at the numbers. There are millions of businesses in the United States; about 5,000 hospitals, 7000 banks, 100,000 software companies and more than 120,000 marketing agencies. Some estimates put the number of smaller businesses in Arizona alone at 500,000. Some of those do not qualify to apply for the best workplace awards, but many do. If your company was recognized, for example, as one of the 50 best advertising agencies in the U.S. or one of the top 10 tech companies in Arizona, would that not be a prestigious recognition, regardless of the ranking?

If employer branding is the goal of your workplace awards strategy, once you’ve been recognized by a legitimate workplace award, you can confidently say, “We won!” You’re fully legit. And before you start worrying about rankings, take a look at this list and see if you can remember which one of these hit songs was not ranked #1:

Material Girl (Madonna)

Moves Like Jagger (Maroon 5 feat. Christina Aguilera)

Bad Romance (Lady Gaga)

Girls Just Want to Have Fun (Cyndi Lauper)

Firework (Katy Perry)

Bohemian Rhapsody (Queen)

Little Red Corvette (Prince)

YMCA (Village People)

That was a trick question — not one of these hit songs made it to #1. But they were hits nonetheless and virtually no one knows or cares where they placed on the charts, except the artists themselves.

Too often, business leaders view these “best workplace awards” as a high-stakes competition — like the Academy Awards — in which there are clear winners and losers among the nominees, and great actors like Brad Pitt, Glenn Close, and Johnny Depp may never win an Oscar. But most workplace awards are not like the Oscars; there are multiple recipients. All too often, business leaders complain about rankings, while at the same time obsessing over them. Don’t waste the branding value of your company’s culture by falling into that trap.

You worked hard for the workplace recognition you achieve. Be proud! Don’t be ashamed of your spot on a list. The people you want to hire don’t care if you’re company is ranked #1 or #100 — they just want to know you’ve created a great place for them to build a purposeful career. So, promote your award like you mean it. Hang the banners, write the press releases, air the videos, celebrate with your teams, and brag about your award – whatever it is. You won!

One award you may qualify for: Arizona’s Most Admired Companies. For this prestigious statewide competition, be prepared to create essays describing your company’s efforts in Innovation, Customer Opinion, Leadership, Social Responsibility, and Workplace Culture. Nominations for Arizona’s Most Admired are open now, so don’t wait to get started. The deadline is June 16, 2017. Not sure where to start? BestCompaniesAZ can help, and we’d love to hear from you.   

9 Creative Careers For Young Professionals

If you consider yourself more right-brained than left, and you’re looking for a rewarding role, you’ve come to the right place. These nine creative careers will put your artistic, visual, hands-on or writing-oriented talents to great use.

Top Creative Careers For Young Professionals

Fashion Designer

Average Salary: $61,160

If you have a passion for fashion as well as a creative mind, becoming a fashion designer makes for a sensible career option. Fashion designers bring life to sketches and have the unique chance to see their drawings and ideas come to fruition and perhaps appear in magazines.

Architect

Average Salary: $70,320

Similar to fashion design, architecture allows you to actually bring your sketches to life through building design.  world of architecture. Your floor plans and blueprints also bring life to the surrounding neighborhood, once the buildings spring up!

Digital Marketer / Social Media Marketer

Average Salary: $62,363

Digital marketers and social media marketers help promote businesses online through services such as SEO, blog writing, web development, social media curation, graphic design, email marketing, and Google AdWords. If you’re creative with words as well as images, this is an excellent and high-paying career option.

Graphic Designer

Average Salary: $51,640

Graphic designers create graphics for packaging, displays, logos, or digital and also print media. This is one of the top creative careers, because it encompasses a wide range of roles. From simple advertising (online, billboards, printed, etc.) to album cover creation for musicians, this field is lucrative and mentally stimulating.

Interior Designer

Average Salary: $56,000

Many Americans crave TV shows like Love It or List It, House Hunters and Flip or Flop. Crafting a brand-new interior from something formerly outdated or dilapidated offers both meaningful and exciting work. While selecting the best color schemes and patterns that fit the house, as well as allocating proper funds to make it a great space, this role is a true go-getter for younger creatives.

Copywriter

Average Salary: $69,130

Copywriters craft advertising copy to promote products within publications as well as broadcast media. If you don’t feel as though you possess visual or hands-on creative talents, as with the previous jobs listed, writing is a great avenue. Whether you work in-house with a corporation, or for an agency representing various organizations, copywriting offers plenty of flexibility in your career.

College Art/Drama/Music Teacher

Average Salary: $76,710

College professors who teach courses and conduct research in drama, music, and the arts have a rewarding and constantly creative career path. If you’re passionate about the arts and also wish to educate others, don’t hesitate to look for this sort of work!

Set & Exhibit Designer

Average Salary: $54,920

Whether for Hollywood movies or for a local art museum, designing movie, theater, and TV sets proves exciting and fresh for young creatives. Looking for the top creative careers? This allows you to put your eye for aesthetics to good use in a booming industry. If you have construction experience, hands-on artistic qualifications, and a visionary mind, consider becoming a set and exhibit designer.

Video Game Designer

Average Salary: $70,300

This is one of the top paying creative careers for young professionals. You’ll create the essential features of video games — including role-play mechanics, storylines, and character biographies. You’ll also guide and collaborate with production staff to ultimately execute development. If you have online graphics/animation experience and a deep knowledge of video games, this might be the career for you. Whether it means video games, PC games, mobile games, or others, this is a field that doesn’t seem to be dying out anytime soon.

What other creative careers for young professionals would you mention in this list? Let us know, and many of the 100 Best Arizona Companies have job openings. Be sure to follow BestCompaniesAZ on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn and Instagram!

What Makes a Cool Company Culture in 2017?

It’s not just about foosball tables and happy hours any more. Yes, “cool companies” are still known for their fun workplaces, but while the game spaces and free sodas are still there, the focus has evolved into more meaningful company culture building. After all, what is it that makes for a cool company culture these days?

Here are some of the more exceptional company culture characteristics we found in a few of the 100 Best Arizona Companies:

Fabulous Conferences

Workiva TEC ConferenceIt’s all hands on deck as employees of leading tech companies work together across functions to create exceptional customer experiences. Anyone who has worked on productions ranging from major motion pictures to local amateur theater understands the satisfaction of joining together diverse skills, talents, and technologies across functions to create something none of them could accomplish alone. The ultimate team-building exercise, producing a user conference results in stretch challenges, broader perspectives, and greater benefits than simply imparting information about products and features. Putting together a conference creates a sense of pride and fulfillment for employees. One great user conference example: Workiva’s TEC (The Exchange Community).

Pet-Friendly Offices

meltmedia pawsome pupsWe knew it all along – and now we have the research to prove it. Dogs in the office reduce stress, improve workplace relationships, and even increase productivity. The “awww factor” of dogs adds sparkle to a company’s talent acquisition efforts. Like most worthwhile efforts, making a workplace successfully pet-friendly can pose challenges and also requires planning. Sometimes they mistake the astro-turf rug for actual turf. Yes, dog parents have to doo-doo the right thing when there are accidents. But the more we learn, the more we find more pluses than minuses in including four-footeds on the team. You can learn more about the job descriptions of actual office dogs by reading about meltmedia’s pack of pawsome pups.

Thoughtful Workspace Design

Goodmans Living OfficeCool companies have always been conscious of their physical space. While industrial-inspired, open-plan interior designs are currently fashionable, the latest design fads don’t always make sense for every company. The best workspace design not only is shaped by company culture, it influences its character in powerful ways. Adam Goodman, CEO of Goodmans Interior Structures, advocates for a “Living Office” as a more natural and desirable workplace that fosters greater connection, creativity, and productivity. Says Goodman, “Organizations need to balance purpose with profits, and the needs of the individual with the needs of the group. When all of these factors are in harmony, you can achieve prosperity.”

Employee Resource Groups

GoDaddy Employee Resource GroupsCompanies with a cool company culture not only hire diverse staff, they also support them through Employee Resource Groups. ERGs increase engagement, maximize the benefits of diversity within the marketplace, and develop leadership skills among participants. Also, GoDaddy’s ERGs support Veterans, Latinos, Blacks, LGBT, Fitness, and Women. GDVET (GoDaddy Veterans) creates a welcoming and vibrant community with shared experience and values of military service. This ERG promotes career development and continued skill development of Veterans at GoDaddy. GDWIT (GoDaddy Women in Technology) serves to create an ongoing conversation among employees regarding issues of interest to women in the workplace, and to provide new opportunities to create impact for women and girls in local communities. In addition to a robust speaker series, who have included BlogHer founders, Lisa Stone and Elisa Camahort to Anita Borg President Telle Whitney, GDWIT hosts networking events and community activism.

What’s “cool” has changed as well as evolved over the years. From the soothing effect of an office dog to the energizing impact of a fitness-focused employee group, these 100 Best Arizona Companies stay ahead of the curve.

What elements of your company classify it as a cool company culture? Let us know!

Office featured in header image is the GoDaddy Tempe location.