"The name's Bond, James Bond,"" or so staff at Whittard of Chelsea introduced themselves on Father's Day last year, when they dressed up for a Bond-themed promotion. Such high jinks may not fit with the image of a company steeped in heritage, established in 1886 as a purveyor of fine teas and coffees, but by choosing Bond — the quintessentially smart Englishman — the firm typified the balance it achieves between a forward-thinking outlook and tradition.
More than half the workforce is aged 25 or under and women outnumber men by four to one. Staff turnover is reasonably high (typical within the retail industry), yet senses of team and belonging are impressive: 90% of employees say they laugh a lot with people in their team and 87% think their team is fun to work with, while only 14% reckon their team-mates do not care much for each other — all among the best 10 scores among our best 100 companies to work for.
Managers scored well again this year — as they did last year. Four-fifths of staff get their manager's support when they need to learn new skills, 78% feel he/she trusts their judgment and 79% say their manager cares about them as an individual, the latter another top 10 score.
""I Love Tea"" and ""I Love Coffee"" roadshow events supplement training, and managers organise rotas to suit individuals. Stress levels are at a minimum — only 19% say their health suffers because of their work. Just six companies record a lower rate than the 21% who say they are under too much pressure to perform well.
Ceramics, gifts and chocolates now bolster Whittard's wares, but tea and coffee are its core business and it tries to source its products with integrity. Staff think Whittard behaves ethically: 82% say its principles have been made clear, while only 16% don't agree with them. Three-quarters of employees are proud to work for the firm.
Male to Female ratio:
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Under 35 to Over 55 Ratio: