Bethel, CT & Bellingham, WA, 21 Employees

CALL IT CAMELOT: "We're a 'one for all and all for one' kinda place," says president Gary Schloss. Indeed, while other companies on our list offer some jaw-dropping perks, this small, private-label glove-and-mitten manufacturer delivers with a meat-and-potatoes approach: health-care and vision plans covering 95 percent of costs, paid maternity and paternity leave, 2 P.M. closings on summer Fridays, flexible hours year-round, and generous bonus and profit-sharing plans. "We try to create a very stable platform so that people can live their lives," says Schloss.
SAIL AWAY: That's what VP of product development Bill McGown did for six months on his 2002 sabbatical, a benefit granted to Tabar employees on a case-by-case basis.


Tabar is an OEM supplier of high-quality technical glove, mitten, gaiter, and accessory products to leading brands in the outdoor-sports, tactical, hunting-and-fishing, motorcycle, bicycle, and alpine-sports markets. We work from concept creation and 2D spec, through prototyping, production, logistical services and financial services related to turnkey accessory programs to complement a client's core offerings.

Every other year we hold a world team getaway. This is usually to a resort location, and we cover all costs for employees and the majority of the expenses for spouses, whom we encourage to attend. These are lavish events with gift packages and usually allow for free time to enjoy each other's company, as well as training, team building, and learning components. Past destinations have included the Mohonk Mountain House, in upstate New York; Cancún, Mexico; Vail, Colorado; Scottsdale, Arizona; and Timberline Lodge, on Mount Hood, Oregon. The 2010 venue will be Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

We have areas for bike storage as well as a bath-and-shower facility.

We have some employees who telecommute a few days a week for childcare or cost-of-fuel reasons. From Memorial Day to Labor Day we add a half-hour Monday to Thursday, and close at 2:00 p.m. on Friday.

The culture of the company is very employee-centric. We show our appreciation and recognition on a daily basis. Tabar treats each employee as if they have an ownership stake in the company. There are no time clocks, and we allow for individual and artistic expression. Some staffers have painted their offices lime green or pink. We compensate our people extremely well, and part of our mission statement is to provide each employee with a solid foundation from which to build their personal lives.

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