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The Warsaw Voice » Business » July 1, 2009
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Eli Lilly Polska: one of the best places to work in Poland and a great place for working moms
July 1, 2009   
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Kadir Tepebasi, Managing Director of Eli Lilly Poland, talks to Beata Gołębiewska-Chęciak.

Your company has been ranked fifth in the Great Place to Work in Poland List prepared by Great Place to Work® Institute Poland. How important is this result for your company? Why have you decided to take part in the study?
The decision to take part in the study, conducted by Great Place to Work® Institute Polska, was a natural consequence of our internal policy. It is our ambition to be a good employer. We wanted to find out what qualities our employees value most, and what areas need improvements or changes. After all, success is a journey, not a destination. The standardized methodology criteria of the survey made it possible to compare our company with other businesses, including international corporations.

The result is a cause for pride. It shows that our work has been going in the right direction. We are very pleased that the Great Place to Work® study has confirmed the results of our internal employee satisfaction survey, which was conducted last year.

Eli Lilly is also the only company to receive the only special award granted by the Great Place To Work® Institute this year-a special award and recognition as "a Mom-Friendly Company." What have you done to earn the title?
Over 65 percent out of 180 employees of Eli Lilly Polska are women who have been employed in the company for an average of six years, in which time about three-quarters of them have become mothers. Most have two kids but we also have moms with three or even four children. That's why being recognized as a women-friendly company is particularly important for us.

First of all, we apply the rule of equal opportunities and an individual approach to each employee. As an employer, we are characterized by respect for the binding rules and for another human being. We strictly abide by the rights of pregnant women and working mothers. Interestingly, unlike other companies, Eli Lilly does not have any formal support programs for working moms. We believe that flexibility outweighs any procedures in this respect.

Which of the company's qualities were especially appreciated by your employees in the study? Which of the responses are you particularly proud of?
The study conducted by Great Place to Work® Institute Polska has clearly proved that Eli Lilly Polska employees are happy with their work and proud to tell others about it. They also appreciate the atmosphere in the company, relations with their colleagues and managers. They are highly satisfied with the professional and personal development opportunities that the company offers to each individual employee. For me personally, it is important that employees have recognized our high ethical standards. According to 90 percent of respondents, the company's management is ethical, and 95 percent have confirmed that all employees always apply the highest ethical standards. For us it is essential to perform high with high integrity.

The authors of the study emphasize that the highest ranking companies in the Best Place to Work study are also successful ones. Do you think that it pays to be a good employer?
Eli Lilly is committed to constant growth. Our main area of activity involves searching for innovative, breakthrough medicines for diseases which often pose serious medical and social problems. We want the people employed at Eli Lilly to be highly satisfied with their work and dedicated to their responsibilities. We believe that this approach is at the root of the company's success.

The Lilly Poland vision for the next three years is to be the preferred partner in healthcare, focused on improving individual patient outcomes by: providing innovative healthcare solutions, optimizing access for innovative pharmacological products, transforming Lilly Poland to become agile, winning and a great place to work.

Moreover, historically, the core values of Eli Lilly, for the last 133 years have been: integrity, excellence and respect for people.

So, people have always been a priority in our organization. As I have explained, we try to provide our people with the best personal and professional development opportunities. Lilly employees have access to a wide array of training and the chance to pursue their career in a variety of global projects within Eli Lilly & Co. The atmosphere of mutual help and just plain friendliness is extremely important for us. We are proud that these genuinely are the values of our employees, who can cooperate with one another in completing their everyday tasks at work and beyond the company. We have recently finished collecting funds for planting a forest near Warsaw. On May 20 we had the so-called Lilly Global Day of Service-a day of employee-based volunteerism. On that day our employees from all over the country worked voluntarily in seven various orphanages as well as in one old people's home. I can assure you this was genuinely a voluntary initiative, and the day was a definite success thanks to the genuine drive within our employees to bring disinterested help to those in need as well as support for the natural environment!
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