APA Center for Organizational Excellence: National Winner

The Awards

Small Not-For-Profit Category

Certified Angus Beef

Health and Wellness, Family-Style

Ohio – Certified Angus Beef (CAB) is a not-for-profit entity owned by the American Angus Association that establishes and monitors quality standards and works with a network of ranchers, restaurants and retailers to provide consumers with a premium product. CAB looks after the company’s staff, administration and field monitors to promote a positive, family-centered culture that takes care of its own.

Employees are trusted, valued, appreciated, challenged and engaged. It’s not enough that employees are happy, either. CAB is devoted to helping its team be healthy as well.

Employee Involvement

Vibrant communication at CAB thrives in both directions. In addition to weekly or biweekly meetings with supervisors, employees are active participants at the company’s regular breakfast meetings. Plus, CAB hosts ongoing retreats offsite, so the whole team can informally brainstorm, share ideas and provide input on upcoming scheduling. Other sponsored offerings include team-building training, workshops, interaction activities, special events, seminars and serving the community through outreach — all of which help to build relationships and rapport among staff members, leadership and the community.

Health and Safety

As part of CAB’s quarterly integrative health goal for employees, the organization offers an optional online stress assessment. Packed with helpful information, the assessment contains 10 sections, each dedicated to a different aspect of stress management: control, support, change, finances, time pressure, worry/fear, anger, symptoms, outlets and resilience. The assessment drills down to the root of the problem whereupon the employee can then create an action plan with a wellness coach or onsite psychologist. Ergonomic evaluations, yoga, company-provided Fitbits and blood pressure checks also help keep employees at the top of their game.

Employee Growth and Development

In 2014, CAB invested in 1,800 training hours to develop staff through a series of certification programs, conferences, e-learning/webinars, cross-training, mentoring, 360 feedback, professional association memberships, professional publications, training workshops and courses and tuition reimbursement. The series covered leadership topics such as trust, communication, conflict resolution, productivity management, strategic thinking, leadership versus management and empowering leaders. In 2015, a new group embarked on the initial series as the previous group moved up to an advanced, graduate-type series.

Work-Life Balance

Employees receive 10 days of vacation, plus 10 days of personal leave each year that can be used for any purpose whenever needed, plus a bonus day off for each year of service. To assist those juggling work and home responsibilities, CAB offers onsite services during work hours. These vary in frequency from weekly to quarterly and include a wellness coach, a psychologist, concierge services, a physician, dermatology screening, a certified financial planner, an attorney, dry cleaning and free online grocery shopping with nearby delivery.

Employee Recognition

The company regularly gives public recognition and in-person acknowledgment for contributions to the organization, to teams, and for professional and personal accomplishments. CAB expresses appreciation and kudos through multiple special events throughout the year for fellowship, fun and great food. Activities include an awards banquet at Christmas, family fun days, major-league ballgames, amusement parks and patio parties with live music, games and Certified Angus Beef brand steaks on the grill.

The Bottom Line

Along with its exemplary employee practices, CAB continues to have record sales in a down economy. In 2015, CAB was recognized as Best Employer in Ohio for small to medium companies, confirming its ongoing commitment to a healthy, positive and balanced yet always productive workplace. Representing business at its best, people are clearly the company’s most important resource. Through optimism and integrity, CAB has earned pride of place as one of the most psychologically healthy places to work in Ohio.

"The most gratifying aspect of this award is the validation by outside experts who visit your workplace and conclude that routine practices are conducive to a psychologically positive environment. There is an enormous satisfaction in being told you are doing a lot of things right!"

Beth Taylerson
Human Resource Director
The Herald, Rock Hill, SC