The Washington Times - May 2, 2008, 09:02PM
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Duluth
Mercer Island, WA - April 24, 2008 - The Best Christian Workplaces Institute (BCWI)\ has announced the 33 Certified Best Christian Workplaces in the US for 2008. They are: \ \ \ Bellevue Christian School, Bellevue, Wash.\ \ Apartment Life, Hurst, Texas\ \ Christian Heritage Academy, Northfield, Illinois\ \ Coalition for Christian Outreach, Pittsburgh, Penn.\ \ Indian Rocks Christian School, Largo, Fla.\ \ Crown Financial Ministries, Gainesville, Ga.\ \ Lenawee Christian School, Adrian, Mich.\ \ EQUIP, Duluth, Ga.\ \ Stoneybrooke Christian School, Ladera Ranch, Calif.\ \ Joni and Friends. Agoura Hills, Calif.\ \ Wheaton Academy, West Chicago, Ill.\ \ MOPS International, Denver, Colo.\ \ New Mission Systems International, Fort Myers, Fla.\ \ Evangel University, Springfield, Mo.\ \ Open Doors with Brother Andrew, Santa Ana, Calif.\ \ Huntington University, Huntington, Ind.\ \ The Master’s College, Santa Clarita, Calif.\ \ The Master’s Seminary, Santa Clarita, Calif.\ \ Tacoma Rescue Mission, Tacoma, Wash.\ \ Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnas, Ill.\ \ Phoenix Seminary, Phoenix, Ariz.\ \ Harvest House Publishers, Eugene, Ore.\ \ Alliance Defense Fund, Scottsdale, Ariz.\ \ Howard Books, West Monroe, La.\ \ DeMoss Group, Inc., Duluth, Ga.\ \ Urban Ministries, Inc., Calumet City, Ill.\ \ Envoy Financial, Colorado Springs, Colo.\ \ INJOY Stewardship Services, Duluth, Ga.\ \ Logos Research Systems Inc., Bellingham, Wash.\ \ Crossroads Community, Cincinnati, Ohio\ \ Samaritan Ministries International, Peoria, Ill.\ \ Southland Christian Church, Lexington, Ky\ \ Criteria:\ \ Job Satisfaction \0x2013 This measures employees\0x2019 attitudes toward their job and their overall feeling about the organization. Because the degree a staff person is engaged in their job, they will be an asset to their organization rather than a deficit, this is also a measure of their support.\ \ Organizational Commitment \0x2013 This category looks at the level of loyalty that is felt by staff towards the organization. Since this is an important ingredient in not only keeping training cost down, but also in retaining qualified workers, it looks at that as well. It also addresses what direction the company is moving \0x2013 is it improving?\ \ Christian Witness \0x2013 Something unique compared to other surveys, the Best Christian Workplaces Survey exposes to what extent faith is evident in the workplace. This includes such things as the opportunity to use spiritual gifts, evidence of fruit of the Spirit in leadership, presence of Christian fellowship, and making decisions according to what the Bible teaches.\ \ Supervisory Effectiveness \0x2013 Here the fitness of those in leadership is addressed. Are the leaders compassionate, just, and trustworthy? Further, are they there to help employees accomplish their jobs as they should be?\ \ Work Satisfaction \0x2013 This examines the degree to which employees feel good about the work they do. If they are effective in their work they will feel fulfilled and enjoy what they do, so they are asked about these things in particular. This also depends on such things as adequate training, the opportunity to use the skills they have, and clear communication regarding what the goals are, all of which are covered in the survey.\ \ Personal Growth and Development - Here an atmosphere of encouragement and equipping is checked. Realizing that employees need to be invested in, not only through training programs, but also the support of those around them, the survey checks for these vital elements. Further, is good work rewarded?\ \ Management Effectiveness \0x2013 Questions regarding integrity, balance, and wisdom are found under this group. Also, does management institute processes to ensure honesty, a limit to work demands and empowerment for employees?\ \ Customer/Supporter Satisfaction \0x2013 In order to measure this employees are asked if they would recommend their products/services to their friends and family. Also, issues such as emphasis upon long-term relationships with customers, strategy to meet the needs of those they serve, and overall satisfaction levels are evaluated.\ \ Teamwork \0x2013 How well staff work together is the focus of this category. This draws upon conflict resolution skills, managing diversity and a common commitment to excellence. It also addresses the issue of proper hiring standards to ensure a capable workforce.\ \ Communications \0x2013 This examines Top Down, Bottom Up and Peer to Peer communications. Communication serves both to transfer information and also bring unity, so these effects are also asked about. The survey also checks to see if the communication encourages accountability and trust as it should. When employees are allowed to express their ideas it is a means of empowerment, so do they feel empowered? Effective work requires good lines of communication to share ideas, resolve conflict, and encourage each other in our service to God and all these things are surveyed.\ \ Pay and Benefits \0x2013 Here pay, health plan, vacation package, and retirement plan are looked at in terms of employee satisfaction. Their perception of pay and benefit competitiveness is also included.
Julia Duin, assistant national editor/religion, The Washington Times