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This year’s 100 Best Companies to Work For

February 18, 2020, 4:59 PM UTC

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It’s the most wonderful time of the (work) year.

Fortune released its annual list of the 100 Best Companies to Work For today. Not only is it one of our most popular lists, it’s one that inspires the most chatter among the raceAhead crowd. For one thing, it seeks to measure the underlying spark of inclusive cultures: Employees who feel seen, appreciated, valued, and welcomed as contributors to the company’s broader purpose.

The juice is in the methodology, which is managed by our partners at Great Place to Work (GPTW):

“Employees responded to over 60 survey questions describing the extent to which their organization creates a Great Place to Work For All™. Eighty-five percent of the evaluation is based on what employees report about their experiences of trust and reaching their full human potential as part of their organization, no matter who they are or what they do. We analyze these experiences relative to each organization’s size, workforce make up, and what’s typical in their industry and region.”

The survey reaches companies with more than 4 million collective employees, making it the largest ongoing survey of employee engagement in the workforce.

For the second year in a row, the top spot goes to Hilton, who has been improving benefits across the board for all employees. In the last year, Hilton instituted a new employee stock purchase program available to all regardless of pay grade, and an extended parental leave policy with thoughtful perks, like a partnership with the breast milk shipping startup Milk Stork, so employees can ship or carry breast milk when traveling for work, for free.

Rounding out the top five are Ultimate Software (#2), Wegmans Food Markets (#3), and Workday (#5).

But I must call out, once again, Cisco, who is on the list at #4 this year. The hardware giant has earned a place on every 100 Best Companies to Work For list since it was established in 1998, a feat that no other company has matched. Sure, sometimes they were at the top of the list, sometimes not, but they’ve been there for the duration, which is an extraordinary accomplishment. (I’ve covered why, here.)

You can find the entire list here, or apply to have your company surveyed for next year here. And job seekers take note: The GPTW certified companies have some 91,425 jobs open now. If you’ve been looking to get your engagement on, time to get to work.

Ellen McGirt

On Point

Boris Johnson aide quits after he shared his racist beliefs out loud They were not subtle, either. Andrew Sabisky, a new member of adviser squad to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, had previously stated that Black people have lower IQs than white ones, and recommended that forced contraception would be necessary to prevent “creating a permanent underclass.” After Downing Street refused to comment or disavow, Sabisky stepped down on Monday citing “media hysteria.”
New York Times

The Boy Scouts declare bankruptcy amid crush of sexual abuse lawsuits The century-old organization is facing some 300 lawsuits from men who say they were abused as young scouts, no longer protected by statute of limitation laws on such complaints. Many states have extended the time that victims can sue the people who abused them and the organizations that enabled the abuse, a response to high profile scandals like USA Gymnastics and the Catholic Church. Insurance carriers have been withdrawing coverage that would handle claims, saying that the Boy Scouts organization knew about the abuse. The potential liability is enormous: One 2010 case resulted in a $20 million judgment.

African American-owned bank issues a Harriet Tubman visa card It was a sincere effort. Last week, OneUnited Bank announced a new limited-edition Black History Month version of its Visa debit card, created by Miami-based artist Addonis Parker. The portrait shows Tubman with her arms folded across her chest, Wakanda-style. The reviews have been… mixed. But Parker, who has been working on the original painting since 2016, says the pose is intended to be the American Sign Language symbol for love. “Her pose is about love. Love is the greatest power in the world, and love is the greatest poverty in the world today,” Parker told Ad Week.
Ad Week (registration required)

On Background

Brandon Taylor is having a moment The Black, queer, scientist-turned-novelist has long been a quietly delightful presence on Twitter, now his debut novel is enjoying a flush of praise for its unique sensibility and powerful prose. Real Life takes place over a weekend in the life of a young Black biochem grad student at a predominantly white school in the Midwest. It was his attempt to insert his own perspective into campus lit, a genre that rarely includes people like him. And he is fascinating:  A Montgomery, Ala. native, then a doctoral student in biochemistry at the University of Wisconsin, now a novelist who took on the task of writing like a problem-solving scientist. “It began in this very mercenary place,” he said, “but it moved to a place of genuine artistic interest,” he told the New York Times. Playwright Jeremy O. Harris reviews the book here, one of Taylor’s short stories below.
O Magazine

Twelve diversity and inclusion terms you need to know Catalyst, the nonprofit focused on gender equity in the workplace, brings us back to the basics with 12 terms that will help you become fluent in the language of inclusion. As a starter set, they’re a helpful window into the worlds they describe. My favorite is equality vs. equity, a distinction that is hard to grasp at first.

A free black woman told the tale on racist abolitionists in 1859 Harriet Wilson’s long-forgotten novel was provocative from the start. Our Nig, a deviation of the racial slur, was the nickname of the book’s protagonist, a mixed-race girl who was the badly treated indentured servant of a Northern white family. There were little clues as to the setting, but the subtitle tells the tale: "Sketches from the Life of a Free Black in a Two-Story White House, North; Showing That Slavery's Shadow Falls Even There." The book was rediscovered in the 1980s by Henry Louis Gates, then a doctoral student, in a rare bookstore in New York City. Since then, more has been learned about the author. For one thing, there’s reason to believe that Wilson was telling her own story. JerriAnne Boggis, founder and director of The Harriet Wilson Project, believes she’s found the house where Wilson was kept. "That is the story of black history in the country," Boggis tells NPR. "You have to keep telling it, keep telling it, keep telling it, reviving it. Or else it disappears."

Tamara El-Waylly produces raceAhead and manages the op-ed program.


“It’s one thing to deplore eugenics on ideological, political, moral grounds. It’s quite another to conclude that it wouldn’t work in practice. Of course it would. It works for cows, horses, pigs, dogs, and roses. Why on earth wouldn’t it work for humans? Facts ignore ideology. For those determined to miss the point, I deplore the idea of a eugenic policy. I simply said deploring it doesn’t mean it wouldn’t work. Just as we breed cows to yield more milk, we could breed humans to run faster or jump higher. But heaven forbid that we should do it.”

Richard Dawkins