Good Employees Equals Good Business

It’s not often in these times that you find a workplace with consistent low turnover, where some people have actually been employed for decades, and where those employees genuinely enjoy what they do. Those days of having one career or place of business for a decade or longer is, largely, a thing of the past. And yet, there still remain a few rare places of business that have been fortunate enough to retain good employees for many years.

Family-owned and operated Baskin’s Hardware is one of those special places. Serving its customers on the Cape for over 40 years, the Baskin family has continuously strived to operate a business where its employees not only stay, but one where those who do leave often return.

“Our longest-term employee is Jim Morton, who’s been here around 35 years,” said owner Lauren Baskin. “His wife jumped on 10 years after him, so she’s been with us 23 years or so, also. Our manager in Yarmouth, his sons have worked during the summers and on weekends while they’ve been going to school. Now that they’re in college, they come back and help us in the summertime.”

Baskin said they’ve had husband and wife teams, and families that have participated in the business. “My parents started out working in the Orleans store, and they were pretty much running it on their own until Jim Morton came along. We have about 40 employees now,” she said.

Baskin said they have both part-timers and a fair amount of full-timers, maybe 23, with full benefits like health insurance, 401Ks, vacation time between two and three weeks, etc. “We make sure we keep people on year-round, because we know how important it is that they’re not laid off in winter. Some of the part-time people will go to Florida in the winter, and when they return they come right back. We’ve had one employee who worked here until he was 89 years old!”

As a company, Baskin said, they will sometimes do a fundraiser for someone in need, like the recent tragedy with Sergeant Gannon, or for Big Nick’s Ride or the Harwich Fire Department. “We do things as a business for the community as often as we can.” They recently carried a supply of blue lights, which sold for $5 each, and the funds went to benefit the Yarmouth Police Foundation. The stores reordered as often as customers continued to ask for them.

It’s not unusual for multiple members of a family to work at the stores. John Jaworski, manager of the Harwich Port location, has been with Baskin’s since 1993, and became manager after three or four years. He grew up in Harwich, and is known in the community. “John’s father also worked at the store, as did his nephew. Our manager in Dennis is from Dennis. Our manager in Orleans is from Nauset. There’s a lot of family in the Harwich store, too,” Baskin said.

Longevity in the workplace is important to both employers and employees in any industry. Nowadays, the average time a worker spends with an employer is just over four years, and even less time for those under 25. To have a family-owned business where employees stay on a long-term basis not only benefits those employees, their families and that business owner, but the community at large, who get to know and trust those familiar face over the years.

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About Ann Luongo

Ann Luongo is the Marketing Writer and Lifestyle Reporter for CapeCod.com, and has been writing for Cape Cod and South Shore publications for over 15 years.