The most common question people ask me about our holistic hiring practices is how we continue to nurture and grow the family relationships we established during the employee vetting process.
To be honest, we weren’t really great at doing this at the very beginning. It wasn’t until my dear friend Carin told me about their flexible work program, Education Illumination Option (EIO), that we found our solution. EIO encourages parents to play a more active role in their children’s education by allowing them to dedicate up to 20hrs per week to volunteering in the classroom. What does this has to do with fostering family relationships at the office? EVERYTHING!
Let’s break it down:
- Parents, especially parents of millennials, want more involvement in every aspect of their children’s lives.
- These parents were the first wave of very active parent volunteers in classrooms, inventing new roles, such as the Classroom parent whose role is to help the teacher in every capacity possible.
- There is now a largely untapped resource pool of loving, nurturing adults, who just want to help see their children–and their children’s peers–succeed.
And so, last year we launched our Office Parent Volunteer Program (OPV for short). The key to a successful OPV program we found is having a OP: Office Parent. Just like a Classroom parent, who basically runs the classroom on behalf of the teacher, our Office Parent (Jane) organizes all aspects of the office, including organizing our other OPVs.
Our OP and her legion of OPVs organize our office parties. They help integrate new employees. They review speeches. They manage office outings. Who executes 2PM snack time? You guessed it! The OPVs!
I would never go back to the pre OPV days. I don’t know how we managed before. Our OPVs are truly VIPs.