The American Psychological Association (APA) recognized six employers for their efforts to promote employee well-being and organizational performance at its 11th annual Psychologically Healthy Workplace Awards ceremony in Washington, D.C., held this past winter.

At these six winning companies, more than seven out of 10 employees say the organization values employee involvement (71 percent), work-life balance (77 percent), training and development (78 percent) and employee recognition (77 percent).

Well-being plays a central role in these organizations, with 79 percent of employees reporting that their organization promotes and supports a healthy lifestyle. More than two-thirds say the organization provides adequate resources to address their mental health needs (69 percent) and help them manage stress (68 percent).

The average turnover rate for these six organizations is less than a third of the national average, and only nine percent of their employees say they intend to seek employment elsewhere within the next year, compared to almost a quarter (23 percent) nationally.

Certified Angus Beef (CAB) establishes and monitors quality standards and works with a network of ranchers, restaurants and retailers to provide consumers with a premium product. CAB looks after the company's staff to promote a positive, family-centered culture that takes care of its own. Among its many offerings are regular health assessments, an onsite psychologist and wellness coach and rotating professional services that are onsite, such as a financial planner, attorney and physician. Since 2014, CAB has invested in more than 1,800 training hours for employee growth and development.

Chillicothe and Ross County Public Library employees have been making healthy changes personally and the culture of the organization has benefitted as well. Among its offerings are flexibility in scheduling, adjustable-height desks, peer-to-peer recognition and community service opportunities. Through the "Live Healthy, Live Well Challenge," 80 percent of participating employees reduced their risk of chronic disease and 96 percent either lost or maintained their weight. In 2012, employees took an average 11 days of sick leave. The following year, sick leave averaged seven days, a 34 percent drop.

Grants Plus is a small but fast-growing business that handles every part of the grant-seeking process from strategy to research, writing, training and follow-up. Among its offerings are staff-determined schedules, communication via a company-hosted social media site, health insurance and paid time off available to all employees. Its employee-centered practices show their model is strong for financial performance, low voluntary turnover rates and high customer satisfaction. In a recent customer satisfaction survey, 100 percent of respondents said they would recommend Grants Plus to a colleague.

Moore Communications Group (MCG) is a one-stop shop for branding, public relations and advertising with branches in Tallahassee, West Palm Beach, New Orleans and Denver. MCG's employee-focused programs are able to neutralize a lot of stress, such as client demands and project deadlines that are inherent in the intense public relations industry. Among its offerings are an in-house wellness coordinator, mentoring for upward mobility, paid parental leave and interim bonuses. Wellness programs have substantially contributed to the overall health and well-being of MCG's employees. Morale is high and team members experience less stress and improved health, as reflected in low turnover and absentee rates, improved eating habits and increased work-life balance.

Passport Health Plan is a local nonprofit, community-based HMO that administers Kentucky Medicaid benefits throughout the state. The culture at Passport has a direct bearing on how its customers — members, providers, government officials, advocates and the community — perceive it. Among its offerings are a comprehensive wellness program, behavioral health services, healthy food deliveries and a peer-to-peer recognition program. Since embarking on its "Cultural Change" program, the organization has enjoyed higher staff job satisfaction and increased productivity. Looking to promote from within, Passport has had 76 internal promotions within the last two years.

San Jorge Children's Hospital, with a hospital and four pediatric clinics, is devoted to retaining its best employees by treating them with dignity and providing incentives to excel. Among its offerings are ongoing focus groups to share ideas, flexible work schedules (including a 10-month work program with prorated salary that allows employees to get paid throughout the entire year) and cash awards for excellent service. The hospital scored 90 percent on both its employee satisfaction survey (conducted anonymously) and in a customer satisfaction survey with patients. Absenteeism is a low 2.5 percent, and turnover is between just 11 percent and 13 percent.

Nominees are selected from a pool of previous local winners and evaluated on their workplace practices in the areas of employee involvement, health and safety, employee growth and development, work-life balance and employee recognition. Additional factors that are considered include employee attitudes and opinions, the role of communication in the organization and the benefits realized in terms of both employee health and organizational performance. Awards are given to for-profit and not-for-profit organizations as well as government, military and educational institutions.

To learn more about the award winners and how to create a work environment where employees and organizations thrive, visit

The American Psychological Association, in Washington, D.C., is the largest scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States. APA's membership includes more than 122,500 researchers, educators, clinicians, consultants and students.