Is sunshine still relevant?

I read two articles when I got to my office on this unusually cold Florida morning. The first was a list of the 50 best employers in America. The second was “Florida unveils new business logo.” What I learned from the first article is that Calgene, the number one employer in America, is located in the not-so-sunny-state of New Jersey. And from the second article, I learned that Florida’s new business tagline is “Florida. The Perfect Climate for Business.” Is our weather still the only thing we have to attract businesses to Florida? Despite the depth of research that the article says formed the foundation of our state’s new business identity, I have to say, we (and especially our state’s leaders and the agency that crafted this new business logo and tagline) are woefully out of touch with what progressive, competitive businesses are focussed on. The new logo, unveiled proudly by Governor Rick Scott, features a tie as the main icon. Yes, an orange neck tie is the symbol of business in Florida. In the 21st century. Meanwhile, the top 50 employers in America are surveying employees as to their “feelings of meaningfulness and satisfaction.” My own employees talk to me about the same things. What can I as an employer do to attract and motivate the best talent? It’s not about the climate, it’s about playing a role in the meaningfulness of their lives. It’s about culture and communication and listening to their needs. In return, they work. Very hard. To help our company and our clients succeed. If I were a business considering a move to a new state, an orange necktie and a tagline that reads “The perfect climate for business.” would seem antiquated, out of touch and antithetical to what it takes to build a motivated team and a successful business. To me, it’s no surprise that not a single one of those 50 best employers in America is based in Florida. We are focused on the wrong issues and sending the wrong message.



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