Employees value regular communications from firm leadership – particularly the managing partner or chief executive – but even better is the opportunity to meet with them in the flesh.

The leaders of many of the Best Firms to Work For make a point of sharing information, insights and details about their firms’ performance with their staff. Managing partners at top-notch firms of all kinds write regular columns or newsletters, hold periodic town halls or otherwise keep their employees in the loop.

Others go further, creating opportunities for staff to interact individually with the firm’s leadership. For instance, at Wilkin & Guttenplan, a Best Firm to Work For in New Jersey, the managing partner and members of the management team go to lunch with every staff member several times a year to build relationships and get feedback.

Meanwhile, the managing partner of Minnesota’s Mahoney Ulbrich Christiansen & Russ PA holds sessions with small groups two to three times a year to share firm results and plans, and provide a forum for feedback. Similarly, at Massachusett’s DiCicco, Gulman & Co., the managing partner hosts small team meetings with three to four people “to facilitate feedback and questions for firm improvement.”

At Rhode Island’s Sansiveri, Kimball & Co., the managing partner/CEO meets with each staff member twice a year in an informal setting (over breakfast, for instance) for a personal discussion of how things are going and their individual role at the firm -- and at Boston’s Wolf & Co., the staff has a chance to enjoy happy hours with the CEO.

Whatever you do, don’t underestimate the value of communication straight from the top. Bellevue, Wash.-based Best Firm to Work For Clark Nuber learned that when its CEO stopped sending out his regular electronic “Message from Dave.”

“We didn’t think it was a big deal until he stopped -- and employees asked for it,” the firm reported.

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