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As the project manager of our global Great Place to Work programs, I’ve had the opportunity to attend the annual Great Place to Work Conference in Greece and Sweden where they’ve announced their top workplaces in Europe the past couple years.
For four consecutive years, Cadence has been recognized as one of Europe’s 25 Best Multinational Workplaces, this year earning the #12 spot. The list is based directly from European employees’ feedback in a survey that measures their work experience across several dimensions. This also resulted in Cadence earning local-level recognitions this year in France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Poland, and the United Kingdom.
While in Europe for the conference, I had the opportunity to visit sites in Poland, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Each site has its own culture, all while embodying the One Cadence – One Team spirit! What really stood out to me during my visits was how tight-knit the teams are. Employees have worked together and built their entire careers together with Cadence, in some instances for decades. I wanted to learn what keeps them engaged and driven.
I had a chance to interview seven of our site leaders in Europe who represent a mix of management levels and functions (sales, application engineers, IT, research and development). In addition to their normal roles, they’ve taken on the additional responsibility to champion Cadence culture and values at a local level.
They bring with them an incredible knowledge of our history and culture, with tenures ranging from 13 to 29 years, and a total of 145 combined years of experience at Cadence! Here are some highlights of what they said makes the work experience special at Cadence, at their site, and for them personally.
What is unique about the Cadence culture?
Marco Inglardi (Italy): People empowerment. From the start of every employees’ career at Cadence, they are given trust and autonomy for their responsibilities. This makes people feel like they are a key part of a team and can make an immediate impact. This is a very special feeling.
Joern Stohmann (Germany): Cadence has a well-defined culture. That’s not a given, but it has allowed us to master the challenges that we face in our industry. We have a clear focus: Customers first; a clear definition of what Cadence stands for: Innovation, Quality, Agility and Integrity; and clear guidance how we can achieve great results: as One Cadence – One Team. Cadence has established many programs and processes to live this culture and to make it real.
Ian Clifford (United Kingdom): As a company, we’ve always respected our employees and recognized and rewarded their achievements. Cadence continually challenges me to innovate and it’s a very open culture that encourages you to work and collaborate across organizational boundaries.
Jacques-Olivier Piednoir (France): It is the right mix of centralized culture and local autonomy. They empower each site leader and local manager to adapt the corporate values and guidelines to the local context and the local employees.
What programs or practices resonate most with your site’s employees to make it a great place to work?
Brendan Pollard (Ireland): Twenty years ago, we set up a program to bring the site together to build connections that enhance work relationships. We have a new committee of volunteers every year planning events, including summer team building events, Christmas parties, and other socials. The events organized over the past 20 years have been a core catalyst in the spirit that is evident today in Dublin.
Marc Villeroy (France): The team-first spirit resonates the most with our employees. Our culture sustains employee enthusiasm. Every person in the site is engaged in their work and social activities, and employees can ask or receive help from any person that they reach out to. We understand that a culture rich in diversity is key to business success and diverse perspectives allows us to better understand the business opportunities in various markets.
Ian Clifford (United Kingdom): The Cadence Volunteer Time Off program is great. It gives every employee five paid days off per year to work for their local community. We hear from employees how rewarding it is for them to be empowered and encouraged to give something back.
Miroslaw Bandzerewicz (Poland): Engineers appreciate the flexible working time, where the start and end times adjust to their specific duties, and they can choose the optimal model for themselves. Our peer-to-peer recognition program gives every employee the ability to reward others for helping them. The Volunteer Time Off program supports employee volunteer work in their local society with and our site has discovered the value of team volunteering to make a bigger impact.
Joern Stohmann (Germany): This year we volunteered for the company’s hunger relief campaign with Rise Against Hunger which was a very special event and a great contribution to the community. Locally, the Munich Site Committee is engaged in planning multiple activities for charity, fitness, Women@Cadence, and socializing. We also have many employees organizing their own activities like running, yoga, biking, and boot camps, and often serve as the trainers themselves. We work together and we celebrate together.
What stands out to you about your experience at Cadence and has made you want to work here?
Jacques-Olivier Piednoir (France): We have a vibrant work environment. Employees are happy to come to work every day, see smiling faces, and have lively conversations in the work cafeteria – and believe me, French morning conversations over a coffee can be very lively. Even our customers have experienced this themselves. They tell me we have a great work environment and they enjoy working with us and visiting for meetings, trainings or seminars. It’s the strength of our culture that gives me confidence in our business success.
Miroslaw Bandzerewicz (Poland): Cadence is a large organization with many business units, a variety of professions and experiences. However, I would like to emphasize that people working in Cadence, especially in the Poland team, have shared many years of work, during which long-term friendships and even family ties have formed. In this work atmosphere, overcoming challenges is easier and more enjoyable.
Marco Inglardi (Italy): It’s all about the journey, not the destination. The work we are doing has significant impact. We don’t know where technology will take us in 10 years, but we’re sure that we’ll enjoy getting there while working at Cadence!
Brendan Pollard (Ireland): I have built numerous close relationships and friends for life, not only in Dublin, but globally across Cadence. In many aspects, we do feel like old friends or even family at times. We have truly challenging working commitments, but we work together to get the job done. My colleagues work really hard to improve and enhance not only themselves but also the services they provide in their roles to other employees.
Marc Villeroy (France): Jobs aren't just a paycheck. We spend so much time working here with our teams, it is important for both the employee and the employer to make sure that we have a strong culture vision that focuses equally on employees, our customers and our partners. Cadence has shown they have a great vision for our culture that has become the foundation for success.