Feature Model Practice Dog Pound Gym


Industry: Technology

Principle III: Health, Safety, & Freedom from Violence

2014 Challenge Submission

Building a Family Friendly Culture

Zynga is a results driven company, allowing for flexible schedules to meet both work and life’s demands. As busy as this keeps employees professionally, sometimes it can be a challenge to maintain a balance, especially with all of the hoops and hurdles that can be involved in keeping an active and balanced life as a professional in the 21st century.

“I love that Zynga provides me with the resources and tools to maintain a healthy lifestyle. From the gym facilities to the numerous classes offered like yoga, spin, TRX and Pilates – there are many options available for me to get in a workout while helping drive Zynga’s mission of Connecting the World Through Games.”
Claire Tipton,
Senior Manager Communications

The company offers open vacation policies, flexible schedules, the ability to bring beloved dogs to work, and many family friendly hosted events. Employees have organically created affinity groups like Parents at Zynga, Women at Zynga, and Zynga Pride (LGBT), demonstrating Zynga’s commitment to fostering a positive and supportive work environment that is family and pet friendly.

As a company that builds games largely for a female audience, it is equally important to attract female talent to design, engineer, market, lead projects, and contribute on a variety of levels. At Zynga, women can receive mentorship to become leaders in their careers while receiving support as a parent, identify safely as LGBT, and reach their fitness goals all on campus. Zynga’s programs are all-inclusive, do not discriminate, and encourage a holistic approach to being at work.

Zynga’s mission from the beginning has been to connect the world through games by developing fun, engaging consumer experiences and creating a complimentary culture that embodies that spirit. As part of that culture, employees, also known as Zyngites, bring their whole selves to work and the company strives to be in tune with the needs and rhythm of their employees’ daily lives.

Zynga Wellness programs provide a safe and time-efficient space for individuals to maintain healthy lives. The company provides healthy meal options and offers programs targeted at every level of fitness that encourages healthy life choices and education.

How does this model practice work?

The Dog Pound Gym at Zynga prides itself on offering an environment in which all gym members are welcome. The gym is available to all full time employees regardless of department and is located onsite. Membership and classes are free. Personal training is available at additional cost. Massages and Reflexology are subsidized.

Wellness programs can bring the entire Zynga community together to create meaningful relationships that motivate and benefit all employees regardless of ethnicity, age, sexuality, and gender. The gym’s staff, run by Ethos Health Co., recognizes that gyms can be intimidating and they strive to make women and inexperienced gym users feel comfortable and safe.

“The staff at our Dog Pound Gym kept me encouraged and coming back every day to help achieve some amazing weight loss and fitness goals while also helping me gain a self-confidence that cannot be measured. I walk with my head a little higher, stand up prouder, and assert myself more confidently in everything I do for Zynga.”
Jennifer Burger
Associate Manager Customer Service

The gym allows people to meet each other across the company. Several people have maintained healthy habits and lost significant amount of weight as part of their personal goals. Teams can bond over fitness challenges by competing with each other or against other departments.

How can I adopt this model practice in my workplace?

1. Executive Sponsor: Each effort must have support from at least one executive staff member to ensure company support and promote positive cultural changes.

2. Communication: It’s important to keep everyone informed about available resources on campus such as through posters, email aliases, and new employee on-boarding.

3. Celebrate: Ensure everyone is having fun.

4. Collaborative Competition: Adding collaborative competition always helps to encourage participation, market programs, and creates and environment for employees to meet and build comradery with other employees in different divisions of the company they would have never met otherwise.

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