Hawaii WorkplaceWritten by Jason Ubay On 12 August 2011
Best Places to Work: The Limtiaco Consulting Group

COMPANY: The Limtiaco Consulting Group, Inc.

BEST PLACES TO WORK 2011 RANK: No. 3, small-sized companies (15 to 49 employees)



SPECIAL MENTIONS: No. 2 Healthiest workplace in the small employer category

BENEFITS: Company offers tuition reimbursement; 100 percent medical coverage premium; 401K match

Many probably won’t forget one of the most interesting excuses for time off that the Limtiaco Consulting Group allows, “Ugly Day.” In “What Makes a Workplace One of the Best?” the staff noted the extra day off work (to be used any moment’s notice) as their favorite perk.

TLCG's kickball tournament winners.

“Our company created this annual day off several years ago,” says company president and partner John Katahira. Technically it is counted as a floating holiday. “We understand everyone has days they simply don’t feel like working. One day each year, employees are allowed to call in ‘ugly’ and take the day off. No need to lie; no questions asked. It’s fun because people actually email ‘I’m ugly today,’” he says.

And while their flexibility has earned them loyalty with their staff; Katahira shares their overall goals as a company, which may differ from many other businesses in Hawaii:

  • “Stop accepting new clients (gasp!) because we need to ensure that we are able to service our existing clients to our highest level. New clients should only be considered after we are confident we can expand without sacrificing service to existing clients.”
  • “Develop our younger staff. Developing new technical skills is a given, but our commitment to developing tomorrow’s leaders is often times more important.”

EMPLOYEE RECOGNITION: Rather than have various employees (and various personalities) buy into one company motto, the company tries to incorporate and build upon employee values. “We asked that each employee complete the following sentence: ‘To be a successful consulting engineer, one must…’ These employee-driven statements provide a constant reminder of what’s truly important to us,” he says. The unedited results are posted on the company homepage.

TLCG on the Hokulea

MORALE BOOSTERS: According to Katahira, “We are fortunate to have naturally hard-working employees who are passionate of their work product and genuinely care for each other. The best way to boost their morale is to show appreciation for their hard work. Gifts and bonuses help, but nothing beats a sincere thank you.”

AWARDS AND HONORS: Company founder and namesake Felix Limtiaco died unexpectedly in 2001. His widow Ruth Limtiaco established the Felix B. Limtiaco Engineering Scholarship in his memory, who used his talents for the advancement of both private and public engineering programs. The scholarship is presented to deserving students of engineering at the University of Hawaii at Manoa College of Engineering. The company has proudly maintained the scholarship for 10 years and counting.


TLCG annual meeting family event at Hawaii Academy

WHY ARE YOU A BEST PLACE TO WORK? According to Katahira, it’s simple: the unwavering commitment to the company’s triple bottom line.

  1. Happy employees.
  2. Happy clients.
  3. Services that improve our communities

In April, Hawaii Business released the results of 2011’s Best Places to Work in Hawaii.

Since this assessment is only conducted once every year, we wanted to follow up with some of the companies to see how they are keeping business booming and employees happy. Check out other spotlights on Hawaii’s Best Places to Work.

Is your company a Best Place to Work? Register for free at bestplacestoworkinhi.com

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About Author

Managing Editor, Hawaii Business magazine. He's also representing the mag on Facebook and Twitter at @hawaiibusiness. You can follow him on Twitter at @jubay.

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