Fairfield business scores double honors | Hawthorne Advertising

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Fairfield business scores double honors

Fairfield Headquarters

FAIRFIELD — The company may have won two awards, but both seem to offer one key message: Hawthorne is a nice place to work.

The “Great Places to Work” award is a national recognition, though the company sent out notice of that certification side-by-side with word of another honor, one presented by the Fairfield Chamber of Commerce.

The “Business Improvement Award” was scheduled to be presented at the Fairfield chamber’s annual banquet Thursday night.

The chamber’s executive director, Detra Dettmann, said the companies that won the recognition did so for reasons that differ from place to place. If there is one overall theme, though, it’s that a business can be constructed in such a way as to fit the environment, the employees and a professional atmosphere.

“It’s a physical improvement award. They have really gone to the next level,” said Dettmann. “The design is intentional [in its goal] to influence how workers are feeling on a particular day.”

An email from Hawthorne about the awards listed some of the morale-boosting, production-fueling updates at their facility: Flexible work stations including 15 unique areas for private or collaborative work, as well as collaborative work hours for time zone differences and to work/life balance.

Free healthy snacks and food to energize the office employees; onsite massage services to relieve tension; an onsite fitness center which includes modern machines, weights, and an outdoor trail walk. There’s also a “Lunch and Learn” programs featuring a complimentary lunch and a relevant topic discussion to aid the employees’ personal and professional lives; meditation programs to encourage staff to learn Transcendental Meditation and take time out of the work day to meditate; the celebration of lesser-known but fun holidays like National Margarita Day.

“If you ever get a chance, you should take the tour there,” said the chamber director. “It’s really fantastic, what they’ve done.”

“Hawthorne cares about our local employees and enriching their lives,” said Hawthorne CEO Jessica Hawthorne-Castro. “That’s why we’ve strived to create a healthy and balanced work environment within a thriving company right here in Fairfield.”

The company has branched out, and has an operation located in Los Angeles, California. But Hawthorne-Castro said her hometown is in southeast Iowa.

“I’m a native of Fairfield and since the time my father built this company, it has always been important to us to keep much of our business within this community, regardless of the work we also do on the West Coast,” she said.

A positive attitude about employees can create a better work environment, said a press statement from Great Places to Work. But it added that having happy employees can be a big draw for getting the best clients, too.

The assessment group Great Place to Work may sound familiar. Every year, they produce one of Fortune magazine’s “top” lists, in this case, of course, “Fortune’s 100 best companies to work for”.

In order to qualify for the certification, a business must allow Great Places to Work to issue and review anonymous ratings from employees. One of the highlights for Hawthorne management is that 95 percent of respondents said they feel “Great Pride” in working with the company.

Reporter Mark Newman can be contacted at mnewman@ottumwacourier.com and followed on Twitter @couriermark.

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