Rising the Enterprise Is a Staff Effort
When Insurance coverage Journal known as Danielle Ellis, principal at Ellis Insurance coverage Company in Charleston, West Virginia, with the information that the company had been named one of many Greatest Businesses to Work For within the Southeast, an workplace supervisor mentioned she was out of the workplace, “rising the enterprise.”
That appears to be the important thing to the Ellis company’s success in recent times – a progress plan that entails the company staff members in enterprise growth, persevering with schooling and, actually, most main selections, Ellis mentioned.
“My staff means the world to me,” she mentioned. “I really feel ‘seen’ as a feminine company proprietor in progress mode, 4 years into my tenure right here.”
What makes the Ellis company an amazing place to work “is that we posture and immerse ourselves right into a tradition of repeatedly studying, whether or not that be me studying what my staff wants and being open to solutions or for my staff all the time striving to enhance their office and the shopper expertise.”
The company’s 10 workers should agree: The company was named the 2023 Silver award winner for the Southeast in Insurance coverage Journal’s annual survey. The company acquired constructive feedback from staff members, earned a excessive general score and noticed robust marks for advantages, working circumstances and administration.
“I’ve labored for a lot of firms over time and this company is an precise household to one another,” one worker wrote. “I’ve by no means had the open communication or respect and care from every other firm.”
The Ellis story is a household story, however one which wasn’t predestined. Danielle’s father, Paige Ellis, based the company in 1981. However, rising up, Danielle wasn’t certain if she needed to enter the insurance coverage enterprise. In school at Marshall College, a voluntary advantages provider noticed her resume. She labored there for a number of years.
“My father noticed that I used to be good at it and provided me a job in his property/casualty company,” Danielle Ellis mentioned. “At first, I turned him down as a result of I used to be unsure about the way forward for P&C insurance coverage at the moment. A sensible mentor suggested me to grab the possibility to work with my dad and advised me I might by no means remorse it. I stunned him and handed my P&C examination, took the job he had provided me.”
Danielle joined the staff in 2012. The subsequent yr, the company constructed a formidable new workplace constructing simply north of Charleston. It additionally established a industrial traces division, which added a variety of coverages and merchandise for native companies. That resulted in “exponential progress” for the company. Paige Ellis retired in 2019 and offered the company to Danielle in 2020.
Danielle’s greatest recommendation to different company homeowners: Respect the staff. “Empower them with the coaching and confidence to make danger selections inside a framework you create collectively,” Ellis mentioned. “All the time contain your staff in coverage growth – search their opinions, brainstorm, and write your company’s story collectively.”
One other tip: Assume forward and curate the language used when discussing the office, to make it extra inclusive. Phrases like “my staff” and “my coworker,” somewhat than “my workers” work greatest, she famous.
Additionally, have a coverage and process developed with enter from the staff for all the things that’s achieved frequently. That may streamline the workflow and “make decision-making second nature and never one thing solely the company proprietor can do. When your staff feels valued and empowered, they not solely stick with you – they take glorious care of your clients and work arduous.”
Survey feedback underscored the staff’s appreciation for his or her company’s management.
“Danielle Ellis is a superwoman,” one staff member mentioned. “Working for a woman-owned enterprise has been the only real healthiest work surroundings I’ve skilled. She has grown with the company because the days lengthy earlier than her father retired and she or he bought the enterprise from him. She works alongside us and I couldn’t ask for a greater company proprietor.”
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