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How Emler Continues to Create an Incredible Corporate Culture

Sep 15, 2022

Authored by Emlerswim

Emler Swim School is consistently recognized as the best swim school by parents, as well as repeatedly named best place to work in multiple cities. Plus, employees call out the culture as their favorite part. It’s no wonder when you find out how team members describe the culture: Fun. Happy. Welcoming. Team-centered. Encouraging. Friendly. Caring. Who wouldn’t want to work in a place like that?

Why Culture Matters to Emler

“The team members are truly the very heart of Emler,” said Emler’s VP of operations Kendra Walker. “My three-year-old grandson recently said it best when he walked into the Emler Swim School he attends. With excitement, he said, ‘I love these people!’

“The first quality we look for when hiring is a caring heart, and it shows,” Walker continued. “Loving little ones and their families is our first order of business. That and fun are the main ingredients in learning to swim.”

Emler is known not only among swim schools for a positive culture but also in the wider business community. The Business Journal publications in Dallas, Austin, Houston, Kansas City and San Antonio have all named Emler Swim School multiple times on their annual Best Places To Work lists.

The driving force behind creating a great culture goes beyond wanting long-tenured team members—which benefits both Emler and employees who want to find a work home—and is about energizing people so they are excited to come to work. When our instructors are excited, they are better able to share their enthusiasm for water with the kiddos and create that positive, encouraging atmosphere that’s critical to learning.

How Emler Continues to Cultivate its Culture

In 2022 Emler implemented people-oriented development (POD), an incentive-based retention program that the team has loved.

As part of the program, people are put in small groups, or PODs, that celebrate milestones and support each other on their Emler journeys. For example, new team members are warmly welcomed when they enter a POD and teach their first day of classes. Sometimes a POD will have fun contests related to a milestone – like a baby food eating contest when someone becomes a Waterbabies instructor. Plus, when team members hit special anniversaries, the whole group gets to split a monetary bonus.

Emler is always on the lookout for new partnerships and ways to support the greater communities it is in. Team members love that Emler provides opportunities to volunteer and give back to their respective communities. We also show off our competitive spirit when we hold competitions between locations. For instance, there’s a lot of good-natured teasing each May during the annual Green Jug Drive to see who can raise the most money for Drowning Prevention Month.

Emler also gives back through its annual candy drive after Halloween that sends extra candies families don’t need to overseas military members, food drives to prevent people from going hungry, and Toys for Tots to ensure every child feels special during the holidays.

Other Draws of Working at Emler

Working with kids to build a lifelong skill that not only can save their lives, but also builds confidence and assists with cognitive development attracts candidates and promotes longevity in the job. This is one reason why Frankie Cruz, General Manager of Houston Vintage Park swim school, wanted to work at Emler.

“I wanted to be in a place where I can make a difference in someone’s life, and after 5 years in the company I’ve made an impact in so many people’s lives,” Cruz said. “I’ve made so many amazing memories. Not only that, each person who I’ve come in contact with has left a major impact on me.”

There is also room for growth. Emler team members receive cross-training, so employees learn other skills, and there are paths for upward mobility. There is even more room for upward mobility since Emler has been recognized as one of the fastest-growing private companies by the SMU Cox Business School.

Here are other reasons people love working for Emler:

  • The schedule is great for students and those needing to work outside of a 9-to-5 job.
  • We work in a warm setting even during cold months since swimming is not just a summer activity. Teaching water safety skills happens year-round.
  • Emler jobs are not boring.
  • There is a casual dress code and Emler swag is provided.
  • Emler provides all necessary training for free.
  • If a team member earns their lifeguard certification, they earn higher pay.

Emler Swim School is a fantastic place for first-time job seekers or more seasoned workers for these reasons and more. If you’re looking for a job or know someone who is, check out our current openings to see if there’s one near you.