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Best Places to Work in Insurance 2014: Lockton Cos. L.L.C.

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Behind Lockton Cos. L.L.C.'s exponential growth are empowered employees and good communication.

Ed Schloesslin, senior vice president of human resources in Kansas City, Missouri, who joined Lockton 10 months ago, said he was initially drawn to the company because it's a “growth organization.”

But in addition to being part of a team that's “winning big in the marketplace,” Mr. Schloesslin said finding the right organizational culture was important to him.

“Being in human resources, we have a customer too,” he said. “That's our associates — our internal customers. I've always wanted to be part of organizations where customer service and satisfaction is paramount, because in human resources we need to provide that same level of service internally ... The tone has to be set at the top, and it has to be an organizational imperative, and that is very much something that Lockton stands for.”

In speaking with associates, Chief Operating Officer Glenn A. Spencer said he has learned that “the No. 1 thing that makes Lockton different and better is that we trust and empower our associates to do what they know is right for our clients.”

Mr. Spencer said that employees, especially recent hires, say they're glad to be part of an organization that doesn't “get in the way of client service.”

“We try to give (new employees) a robust on-boarding experience surrounded by other great associates, but once they're in the role we really turn them loose,” Mr. Schloesslin said. “We empower them to do their job and encourage them along the way to continue to stretch themselves and grow and obviously tap into the resources the company provides,” such as training and development courses.

Communication is also vital, especially in an organization with a decentralized structure, Mr. Schloesslin said.

“Communication at the local level from the management in our various offices is obviously very critical to their location and the clients they're serving,” he said. “But, at the same time, they're part of ... a rapidly growing global company, so appropriate communication coming from the center of the company is equally important.”

Mr. Spencer called attracting and developing the best talent the “the single greatest challenge.”

With 5,300 associates globally, Mr. Spencer said Lockton will need to hire 10,000 more people in the next 10 years “if we continue on our same trajectory.”

“That's a huge challenge and a tremendous opportunity,” he said.