Subliminal messages from the “World's Top Employer” of the 21st century

Did it happen to you as well? to be behind your wheel, listening to your favorite song on the radio, and all of a sudden you pass by a huge billboard and the message makes you spill your coffee all over you, almost choking. It is clear as day and big so you can drive and read and spill your coffee all at the same time  ‘’We, ( company name), have been  proudly nominated as world top employer by…’’ and you don’t get to learn by whom, you have to pass a second time to get the whole picture. Well .. This is going to stick with you for a while because you link the billboard to another one saying ‘We are Y, we hire character train skill’.  What do these messages do, to someone who is passing by and thinking about  making a change in their career. And what a better opportunity than that to change in favor of a ‘’world top employer’’. 

If you are a mature professional and you think that it is time you make your move you will for sure dig for meaning and proof of the message from the billboard. Well if that is indeed the world’s top employer what a bold affirmation. You either live in a very rich and civilized country maybe Switzerland or Denmark or in the Us or Australia. None of that , what is the best employer doing in your backyard? It is not Mercedes, or other automotive OEM, nor Tesla, nor Google, Facebook, by the way. However for the common people the message triggers attention and attracts. It is certainly very appealing. Who doesn’t want to work for the world’s top employer?! 

Street billboards cost a lot overall (the bigger the better, the location is key). To give it some depth you may add some boost to it. The principle here is the same as in the ads you see on tv – if they struggle with the sales you will see them more often on tv and they pay extra to interrupt shows and movies and news in prime time. So goes with these titles that we spot on big billboards. They can be bought by literally anybody.  Do you have 25.000 euro ? What do you want to be called? World’s best employee!! right??

To go more in depth with the analysis: how do we weigh the value of the statement, the words ‘top’, ‘world’s top ‘and what do they describe? What was the criteria behind establishing that fact? Is it according to the size of the company, is it according to the acts of kindness and charity they did? Sales and figures? You might start thinking it is pretty hard to grasp all the meaning behind a true leader among the world’s employers. 

Let’s not forget that the world’s top employer is the ARMY! And recruiting is a term borrowed also from the army. 

You, the mature professional, don’t need to be interested in the procedures of the audit of a company, when you do the background check, however  if you go on the company’s website you should be able to find such information. From the first page you can read  all they brag about themselves , about history, financial data, achievements, recognitions, you are bombarded with information. So, if the company is for real a world’s wide top employer, that can be proved  from the first 3-5 mouse clicks when you get to check the core values of the company and confront that with the title and the published article regarding that company. It should not take you more than 10-15 minutes to see if you are dealing with the real deal (oh yeah , what do you think about the spelling , that should be a criteria for a world’s top employer , grammar! ) or with a company that has some good local image but inflates that in order to ‘’paint’’ a different image. 

If you check the company’s website and you see no information regarding the world top employer nomination,  but you find something that is strictly related to your country, or to the country where the headquarters are,  then our advice is: take it with a grain of salt (you are allowed to question that). Such claims can be at best, misleading, and at worst, false, as the ‘’benchmark’’ that was used for the evaluation. 

To be a world’s best employer is not an easy task. To manage locations all over the world, to make the people feel in the same way about your company’s core values is something that takes commitment, dedication and a lot of work. These things can only be done  by real professionals that do not hide behind pretentious nominations that are empty of substance.

Before closing, and giving you a link to a real top, made by Forbes, we give you this advice: when you see something like this please check everything in order not to fall into a marketing trap. If you are lucky enough to work in a company that is present in Forbes’ top then you are in a good place. If you are not working in such a company it does not mean that you draw the short straw. The company in which you work could be as amazing as the ones that are in the top made by Forbes. You don’t need to be a big sized company to have a great working culture.

As a company I am sure that you have to pay a fee to ‘’Forbes’’ in order to be evaluated but I am sure that an evaluation made by ‘’Forbes’’ is much more reliable than some prize given by an obscure organization that gives ‘’paid prizes’’ to companies that want to paint something that they are not.

As promised here is the link to a real top done by the ‘’Forbes’’ magazine , and the evaluation was done by 160.000 employees from 58 countries.