Beacon Mutual Insurance fosters a supportive, collaborative atmosphere

A SHOE-IN: The Beacon Mutual Insurance Co. employees collect shoes for Gotta Have Sole during the company’s Employee Volunteer Week. 
A SHOE-IN: The Beacon Mutual Insurance Co. employees collect shoes for Gotta Have Sole during the company’s Employee Volunteer Week. 

Best Places to Work 2024 Awards
LARGE COMPANIES #1. The Beacon Mutual Insurance Co.
Employees in R.I.: 159
CEO and President: Brian J. Spero

YOU CAN TELL a lot about a company from its employees. “Caring, engaged and remarkable” are not just words but also the type of people The Beacon Mutual Insurance Co. attracts and the atmosphere the Warwick-based insurance company cultivates.

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Marie Pelletier, Beacon’s senior human resources business partner, feels that when co-workers and the senior management team make you feel valued, respected and appreciated, you are more engaged in your work.

“People who work at Beacon tend to stay for the long run,” Pelletier said, “and that gives people a chance to develop deep relationships and friendships with other Beacon ­employees.”

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Pelletier has been with Beacon for more than 19 years and paints a picture of a workplace where collaboration isn’t just encouraged but is woven into the fabric of daily life. She says it is a place where employees feel supported both at work and in their personal lives, allowing them to stay through many different life stages.

“We do work hard, but we also have fun at work. Our CEO [Brian J. Spero’s] motto is work hard, have fun and celebrate successes, and we do,” Pelletier said.

In fostering such an environment, the company created several employee-run committees and resource groups. Among them are an active well-being committee that seeks to address physical, emotional and financial aspects of health; a vision and values committee provides opportunities for employees to demonstrate Beacon’s values through community service and matching charitable giving; and a diversity, equity and inclusion group that actively plans events to celebrate and learn from Beacon’s diverse workforce.

Spero says his employee-led committees have been instrumental in planning events throughout the year, including cookouts, holiday parties and themed gatherings such as the “Soup-er Bowl” party, Diversity Month potluck, and paint-and-sip events.

“These activities not only provide a break from the regular work routine but also strengthen our caring and family-like culture,” said Spero, who has been with the company for more than a decade, first as general counsel and chief operating officer.

As fun as events can be, though, companies need to compensate employees fairly, support their advancement and provide work-life balance to retain employees.

“I always say you can tell a lot about how a company feels about their employees by the programs and activities they offer and the benefits package they put in place for their employees. Beacon has so many offerings in each of these areas,” Pelletier said.

Beacon’s senior management team has an open-door policy to ensure every voice is heard and valued. Standing company meetings are designed to promote open communication and inform employees of company goals, successes and challenges. At the same time, the company’s flexible, hybrid work environment means employees can manage their time according to their needs.

“We have embraced flexible work hours and a hybrid environment to cater to the diverse needs of our workforce, ensuring they have ample time for rest and recuperation with our generous holiday and vacation packages,” Spero said.

Recognizing the importance of physical and mental health, the company has recently modified the workplace with new programs aimed at mindfulness and financial well-being, renovations to its on-site fitness center, and enhancements to group exercise classes. From hiring decisions to promotion strategies, the company prioritizes cultivating a diverse workforce, recognizing the richness that different perspectives bring to the table.

Beacon also introduced new employee benefits such as incentives for professional designations that reflect the company’s forward-thinking approach to nurturing talent and fostering a culture of continuous learning.

“Our preference for promoting existing staff underscores our commitment to employee development and long-term success,” said Spero, adding that the company also appreciates new employees who often bring different perspectives and experiences into the workplace culture.

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