In my line of business, you tend to hear about some pretty ugly employment situations.

Many days, in fact, I thank my stars for being able to be self-employed, given that I get treated to so many stories of discrimination, bad behavior, and “conduct unbecoming” from employers and bosses out there in the marketplace.  Makes me want to go home and kiss my business license!  At the same time, however, I also have to keep in mind that my client population isn’t really a “fair” or “representative” demographic of the workforce out there.  Most people, as you can imagine, don’t go visit a career counselor if they’re living the dream and already in a wonderfully rewarding and fulfilling work environment.

Regardless, it’s always nice to be reminded that there ARE employers in town who have built a positive, supportive corporate culture and that are doing a great job of keeping their employees happy.  Some days, I find this a very pleasant thought to dwell upon.  And while I’ll tend to hear flattering things about certain employers, vicariously, when my clients land new jobs — there are also (for those who don’t realize it) a number of organized lists out there that showcase the “best places to work” in Seattle, Washington State, and beyond.

So for those of you who are itching to find an organization that will treat you like royalty, or at least with a good old-fashioned helping of personal dignity, I’d encourage you to review the following links for inspiration.  This breakdown represents all of the  relevant “best company” lists/rankings I’m aware of pertaining to our local area:

SeattleMet Magazine: Best Places to Work in Seattle (2013)
Seattle Business Magazine: 100 Best Companies to Work For (2012)
CNN/Money Best Washington State Companies to Work For (2012)
King5/Evening Magazine “Best Place to Work in Western WA” List (2012)
NWJobs People’s Picks “Best Companies” Lists (2010) Best Places to Work in Seattle List (Ongoing)

Now to appease all of you fellow cynics out there, yes, the above lists aren’t infallible — and some companies may have been able to wrangle a spot on one of these lists through aggressive PR and self-promotion, as opposed to actually deserving the honor.  Plus, these kinds of ratings are highly subjective.  One person’s “great” company may be another person’s worst nightmare.  Still, I think you’ll find it uplifting to read through and learn about some of the progressive employment practices followed by some of the organizations featured above.  And better yet, if you find one close to home or up your alley, industry-wise, you might have a new target to add to your job prospecting list!