WL Gore & Associates; a new way of working

While the company that was voted to be the best company to work for in The Sunday Times Poll strives to have an “ideal democracy”, Chris Moore, a HR professional, questions people’s motives for working there. Although there are some very skilled employees at Gore, the new recruits really have to prove themselves.

It’s interesting why people would be attracted to work there if they felt their experience or qualifications counted for nothing. Many people might be put off working for a company which has too much equality. Nevertheless, those who like working at Gore appear to earn credibility, and their qualifications must shine through.

The company employs very skilled personnel; however, all new recruits are taken on as equals with the same treatment and the same office furniture. It is up to individuals to take charge of their own working area and earn the trust from their fellow associates.

W L Gore & Associates are adamant that equality and freedom contribute toward job satisfaction and reduce staff turnover. But with no hierarchy and equality on what an employee receives in terms of overall package even down to the office equipment, office desks and office chairs, everyone is treated the same so there is no opportunity for promotion.

There is a financial incentive for every associate to excel. People are paid only according to the contribution they make to the company’s performance; their policy is to calculate salaries that are classed as “internally fair” and “externally competitive”.

There is no grading structure for pay, salary rises are made only according to a person’s effort towards the overall turnover. Their Staff contribution is measured by a poll which is conducted amongst fellow associates that rank each other in terms of the overall team effort.

This means that someone who is sat at the office desk right next to you has a say in what you will earn. Team leaders, sponsors and even HR are included on the ballot sheet and ratings are averaged out to calculate pay rises or, in some cases, pay cuts.

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Author: John