February 26, 2021

Unusual Benefits

Amenities and flexibility

Mike Vogel | 8/1/2010

Gaylord Palms
Employee amenties at Gaylord Palms include a convenience store, a cafe and an auto service station. [Photos: Tommy Bradburn]


Dori Bryant The impressive Gaylord Palms building that dominates the junction of the Central Florida GreeneWay and Osceola Parkway has 1,409 hotel rooms, a convention center, a 4.5-acre atrium, pools, a rental car agency and other amenities for its customers. But Gaylord Palms (No. 18, Large) offers amenities for the staff of 1,482 as well: A 24-hour fitness center, an employee convenience store, a cafe and a place for basic car service and oil changes. Satisfied workers, says spokesman Jeff Abbaticchio, lead to flawless service, which leads to guest satisfaction and guest loyalty.

Flexible People Practices

Odebrecht (No. 10, Midsized) offered full tuition reimbursement and $100 gift cards to employees of the construction firm to entice them to take the LEED green building certification exam. Twenty have passed, and 10 more are in the process. It also gave pedometers to every employee to encourage fitness.

 Odebrecht employees
Odebrecht employees are allowed to roll over up to 40 days of vacation.[Photo: Odebrecht]
One worker lost 30 pounds. The company allows workers to roll over up to 40 days of vacation and isn't keen on enforcing even that. Most companies allowed no more than 20 or so days to be built up. The company would rather see employees take their time off, but "we are never going to say, 'Take it or lose it.' This is not the way we deal with people," says Jario Flor, who is in charge of people, planning and finance. Another Odebrecht distinction: It doesn't use the term "human resources," Flor explains, "because humans aren't resources. They are humans."

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