QuikTrip Makes Short Work of Top 100 List

Tulsa, Okla.-based convenience retailer QuikTrip was listed as No. 27 among the “100 Best Companies to Work For” in the U.S. in Fortune Magazine’s February 2009 issue.

Also on the list was San Antonio, Texas-based Valero Energy, which ranked No. 93.

In a story in the Tulsa World, QuikTrip President and CEO Chet Cadieux said the company is honored to receive the recognition. “To us it means we are exceeding the expectations of our employees, so they in turn can exceed the expectations of our customers."

QuikTrip has never laid off an employee in its 50-year history, and it rewards longtime employees with paid sabbaticals, the Tulsa World reported, both facts that “make QuikTrip Corp. a standout among companies across the country.”

This is the seventh straight year that QuikTrip has earned its place on Fortune magazine’s list of the "100 Best Companies to Work For."

Fortune said the company’s "Employees are treated so well at this 24-hour convenience chain — wages, benefits and training — that they stay around for the long haul."

Mike Thornbrugh, the company’s manager of public and government affairs, told the Tulsa World that QuikTrip believes strongly in communication and open doors. Not only do employees have the opportunity to rise within the company, they can talk with managers about anything they want.

"So, that gives us a huge advantage on understanding each other," he said.

QuikTrip employs nearly 11,000 people, at least 200 of whom have been with the company for more than 20 years.

Thornbrugh said the luxury of being a privately held company is that employees are the stockholders. Profits are put back into operations and employee salaries and benefits.

"You can’t do that on Wall Street because you have to have this huge return," he told the Tulsa World. "We don’t do that. We pour it back in, and I think that’s a big ingredient of success for us.”

Fortune magazine also picked Valero Energy because of the way it handled the aftermath of hurricane this past year. “Hurricanes Gustav and Ike whiplashed refineries, but CEO Bill Klesse assured employees that Valero would not be severely impacted by financial storms. Employees received financial assistance from the company to rebuild their homes.”

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