N2 Publishing’s Focus on Growing Leaders Yields More Recognition

By Sara Ballhaussen Jul 06, 2016

North Carolina company takes home first place at the Employee Engagement Summit and Awards recently held in Chicago.

At its core, N2 Publishing's mission is about helping people grow professionally and personally. Maintaining that focus – even in times of rapid change – recently netted the company the Employee Engagement Project of the Year Award for its leadership training program.

"For us, employee engagement is simple," said Duane Hixon, CEO of N2 Publishing. "It's as simple as believing our people are smart and responding accordingly. We believe everyone on our team has the ability, personality and drive to be better tomorrow than they are today. Our leadership training program is a result of that."

In 2015, N2 Publishing saw its revenue leap to $100 million and its team expand to more than 200. To grow managers within the ranks, company executives created a pathway where selected participants go through nine months of intensive training.

"Other training programs may focus solely on leadership skills – and of course we focus on that too – but the course is largely designed to teach our leaders how to be leaders specific to N2 standards," Hixon noted. "We heavily cover the topic of culture and how, as leaders, these people will be some of the most identifiable champions of our culture."

The Employee Engagement Summit and Awards program came about from similar thinking, with the aim being to recognize and celebrate the excellence of forward-thinking businesses that put people first and make a real impact in employee engagement.

This year, N2 Publishing shared the stage with a handful of other businesses and organizations, including Home Depot, Ford and March of Dimes.

"The winners have rightly been recognized for excellence in improving employee engagement to drive wellbeing, better work environments and organizational success," said Matt Manners, founder of the Employee Engagement Awards.

Being recognized for how it engages employees is not new for N2 Publishing. Since last year, the company has been placed on more than 10 lists, including Best Workplaces for Recent College Graduates; Best Workplaces for Flexibility; Entrepreneur and Culture IQ’s Top Company Culture – Best in Large Enterprise Award; Great Places to Work and Fortune’s 100 Best Workplaces for Women; Outside Magazine’s Best Places to Work; Best and Brightest’s 101 National Best and Brightest Companies to Work For; and Best Employers in North Carolina.

"We believe that N2 is a company founded on its people; we wouldn't be where we are today without our wonderful team," Hixon said.

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