Ticonderoga Teamwork is the key to running a successful business, so that makes teamwork the top attribute employers seek when hiring workers.
That was the message delivered to Ticonderoga High School students recently as leaders from the community’s two largest employers — International Paper and Inter-Lakes Health — visited a senior economics class.
“Our philosophy is ‘other centered’,” William “Chip” Holmes, Inter-Lakes Health president and CEO, told students. “We look for people who are willing to give more than they get back; people who are willing to work together for the good of others. Any time we make a decision we come back to that philosophy.”
Inter-Lakes Health, which includes Moses-Ludington Hospital, Heritage Commons nursing facility, Lord Howe Estates, Moses Senior Apartments and a variety of specialty clinics, has 270 employees with a $13 million annual payroll.
“We’re a health care facility and we’re obviously concerned with the health of our community’s residents,” Holmes said. “But we’re also concerned about the community’s economic health. We’re pleased we can provide jobs to local people.”
Chris Mallon, manager of the Ticonderoga International Paper Co. mill, said his facility hired more than 60 people in the past year. It has 620 employees.
“We always look for the most qualified person when we hire someone,” Mallon said. “Who is most qualified? We look at high school graduates, college graduates; we look for people who have been involved in sports, community and church projects. We try to create a complete picture of the individual to see if they’ll fit on our team.”
The business leaders look for common characteristics when hiring. They want team players, people eager to learn, those with organizational skills and those with a work ethic.
“Technical skills are a great help, but if a person is willing to work we can teach them what we’d like done,” Mallon said. “We want people who are interested in being part of the team, not just looking for a pay check.”