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Does it matter how you treat employees during a recession?

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…” And hopefully if you treated your employees well through all of it you’ve been repaid with strong loyalty. A new survey from Kelly Services of more than 134 thousand people around the world shows that in the wake of the economic downturn, more than a quarter of employees said that recession made them more loyal to their employer.

The survey, conducted from early October 2009 to the end of January 2010, finds that organizations with positive management, strong morale and active communications have succeeded in making their workforce more engaged in spite of the uncertainty caused by falling profits and layoffs.

I would think, and hope, that loyalty within the natural products industry is even higher than these compelling numbers. There is such an emphasis in our industry on contributing to the wellbeing of others and the planet, along with open communication that makes many natural product companies great places to work.

If you manage people, it’s also worth noting that in the survey all age generations said "more interesting or challenging work was the primary reason that would make them more engaged with their job, ahead of 'higher salary or benefits.” This also bodes well for our industry where what we do often trumps how much money we do it for.

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