TORONTO, Jan. 16, 2014 /CNW/ - For 17 years in a row, Four Seasons has been named by its employees to FORTUNE magazine's list of the "100 Best Companies to Work For." It is one of only 13 organizations to have the distinction of being recognized every year since the list's inception in1998.
"This recognition means a great deal, because it comes from our own employees," says J. Allen Smith, President and CEO, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. "I am proud to be part of a team of talented men and women who bring creativity and a passion for service to our workplace every day and thank each of them for this important recognition. By empowering our employees to use their own judgment and experience to innovate and meet the specific needs of every guest, Four Seasons has created a unique service culture that makes the company an employer of choice."
Employee growth and development opportunities continue to broaden in scope as Four Seasons focuses on an expansion strategy that includes more than 60 new projects in various stages of development – many in new markets around the world. With every new opening, the company typically receives thousands of applications for a few hundred positions. For example, when the company opened a new hotel in Baltimore in 2011, there were 4,000 applications for 250 positions.
"When we hire new employees, we look for people who share a passion for excellence and who infuse that enthusiasm into everything they do," says Executive Vice President Human Resources Nick Mutton. "For all our employees, the company's growth means more and more opportunities to travel the world, immerse themselves in new cultures, learn from a diverse group of colleagues, and take their careers in new directions with Four Seasons."
Hiring is just beginning for the company's newest property in the United States, set to open this summer. In total, Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World® Resort will employ about 1,000 staff – of those, about a half are expected to be new hires from the local community, while the rest will be promotions and transfers from other Four Seasons hotels. Additional new openings in 2014 include Johannesburg, Moscow and Dubai.
Often asked about the secret to the company's ability to attract and retain the very best in the industry, Mutton points to a common language that transcends cultures, backgrounds and specific positions. "It's not what we do, but how we do it that matters most. Our strong culture has always been based on the Golden Rule – the simple idea of treating others as you would have them treat you."
This philosophy translates directly into the guest experience at Four Seasons. With a dedication to service and the ability to creatively meet and anticipate guest needs, Four Seasons employees are empowered to make guests happy – which in turns leads to the company's consistent top rankings in traveller surveys, reviews and awards.
The FORTUNE "100 Best Companies to Work For" list is the latest honour for Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts in another year marked with awards and recognition. In 2013, several Four Seasons hotels were named among the best local employers in their markets. Additional recent accolades include the Conde Nast Traveler Gold List, which named 40 Four Seasons properties; and the Travel + Leisure T+L 500 list, which included 44. In 2013, Four Seasons hotels garnered 21 AAA Five Diamond Awards; 18 Four Seasons Spas were recognized on the Conde Nast Traveler Top Spas list; 32 were US News & World Report Gold and Silver Badge Winners; the brand won three Travel + Leisure Social Media in Travel + Tourism (SMITTY) Awards, including Best Overall Use of Social Media – Hotel Chain; and 16 properties were included in Robb Report's World's Top 100 Hotels list. The brand is also one of Robb Report's Luxury's 25 Most Innovative Brands and the winner of the Best Hotel Group in the Telegraph's 2013 Travel Awards.
To pick the 100 Best Companies to Work For, FORTUNE partners with the Great Place to Work Institute to conduct the most extensive employee survey in corporate America; 257 firms participated in this year's survey. More than 252,000 employees at those companies were surveyed by the institute, a global research and consulting firm operating in 45 countries around the world. Two-thirds of a company's score is based on the results of the institute's Trust Index survey, which is sent to a random sample of employees from each company. The survey asks questions related to their attitudes about management's credibility, job satisfaction, and camaraderie. The other third is based on responses to the institute's Culture Audit, which includes detailed questions about pay and benefit programs and a series of open-ended questions about hiring practices, methods of internal communication, training, recognition programs, and diversity efforts. After evaluations are completed, if news about a company comes to light that may significantly damage employees' faith in management, we may exclude it from the list. Any company that is at least five years old and has more than 1,000 U.S. employees is eligible.
About Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts is dedicated to perfecting the travel experience through continual innovation and the highest standards of hospitality. From elegant surroundings of the finest quality, to caring, highly personalized 24-hour service, Four Seasons embodies a true home away from home for those who know and appreciate the best. The deeply instilled Four Seasons culture is personified in its employees - people who share a single focus and are inspired to offer great service. Founded in 1960, Four Seasons has followed a targeted course of expansion, opening hotels and residences in major city centres and desirable resort destinations around the world. With 92 properties in 38 countries, and more than 60 projects under development, Four Seasons continues to lead the hospitality industry with innovative enhancements, making business travel easier and leisure travel more rewarding. For more information on Four Seasons, visit http://press.fourseasons.com and follow on Twitter at @FourSeasonsPR.
SOURCE: Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
For further information: