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FEATURE STORY TiER1 Performance Solutions TiER1 Performance Solutions is a Covington-based consulting firm that has enjoyed rapid growth over its 16-year life span. The employee-owned company was recognized as a Cincinnati Business Courier Fast 55 finalist in 2017 and has been included in the Inc. 5000 list for 11 consecutive years. The primary service provided by TiER1 is developing and deploying strategies to help companies improve the performance of their workforce. As such, CEO Greg Harmeyer has a firm grasp on what it takes to build an environment that employees can thrive in. “Culture has been a central element of our business from day one,” Harmeyer said. “Something we have been very intentional about building.” It is clear from speaking with Harmeyer that a central tenant of that culture is regular communication from leadership. For example, the company has an annual companywide meeting where employees from all over the country come together for two days. Also, they have monthly “pulse” meetings where employees are informed via video feed about how the overall business is doing. But most interestingly, their communication plan includes an internal weekly podcast conducted by Harmeyer and directed at employees. Harmeyer noted the podcast is not mandatory listening for employees, but rather an opportunity to “Understand how we think about things, or to take a deeper dive on our principles or a particular element of our strategy.” Additionally, TiER1 is very intentional about ensuring new employees are welcomed properly, with an ambassador being assigned to them right away and surrounding them with support. They also offer employees a learning platform they call TiER1 Academy which Harmeyer explained is “A journey in management as opposed to a traditional learning platform.”

TiER1 CEO Greg Harmeyer

The TiER1 Academy prescribes employees a series of experiences that new employees should go through during their first week, month, or year as an employee. For example, read a specific article and then have a conversation with a coworker about how the content fits with TiER1 mission and values.

Guiding Principles In speaking with leaders from these four successful, local companies, some clear principles for creating effective workplace environments began to emerge as common among them. Some of those principles are: • •

PICTURED: Turner employees on Turner's annual community improvement day, Paint the Town Blue, photo provided by Turner.


Open and transparent communication from the top down that encourages and fosters communications from the bottom up. Employee compensation must be competitive and innovative benefits are helpful, however, what is most important in creating a strong culture is how employees are treated. Focusing on your people, creating growth opportunities, recognizing them when they excel, and generally making an intentional effort to build an environment where people feel valued.

These principles will go a long way in retaining talent, and these four companies are proof of that. NK Y PAGE 27

Profile for Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce

NKY Business Journal March/April 2019