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Valassis celebrates its employees in award-winning campaign

Friday, March 04, 2011

Press release from the issuing company

Livonia, Mich. - Valassis, one of the nation's leading media and marketing services companies,announced today that its employee-focused "CelebrateUS" campaign has provided the company another reason to celebrate as a winner of a 2011 Arbor Award for Excellence.

The Arbor Awards for Excellence program is the most prestigious award in the field of Human Resources in Michigan. The award recognizes companies that have implemented innovative best practices and programs within their organizations that drive positive change. Established in 1996, these awards are presented by the Arbor Consulting Group, Inc. and Eastern Michigan University, Master of Science in HR/OD Program.

Following an acquisition in 2007 which doubled the company's employee base, the organization felt it was critical to come together as one company and one culture and placed added emphasis on a unified culture.

"One important reason why mergers and acquisitions fail is a lack of focus on the people side of the transaction," said Joan Moore, President, The ArborConsulting Group, Inc. and Founder, The Arbor Awards for Excellence. "Valassis is a winner of the 2011 Arbor Award because of their deliberate and successful program,CelebrateUS, which continued to bring together the people and people strategies of two organizations, blending them into one company and one culture."

Valassis' CelebrateUS campaign became the banner for the company's cultural efforts in 2010 and is continuing in 2011. Throughout the year-long program, various aspects of the company's culture were the focus. For example, through posters, events and communications, employees celebrated multiculturalism and the company's mission to be all inclusive as "harmonioUS." Meeting a multi-year financial goal was met with a "victorioUS" theme. The 25th anniversary of its Have You Seen Me?(R) missing child program, which features the names and faces of missing children across its RedPlum(TM) product portfolio, was part of May's celebration of a company that is "generoUS." Additionally in 2010, Valassis employees raised over $76,000 for the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) for the second consecutive year. Fund raisers were held throughout the year and funds earmarked for NCMEC.

"As a company, we are focused on strengthening our award-winning culture and celebrating our employees," said Todd Wiseley, Valassis Senior Vice President and General Counsel. "CelebrateUS provides us with opportunities to do just that. We feel so strongly about Valassis being a great place to work that strengthening our culture is one of our four key corporate goals."

A cross-functional team, under the auspices of Valassis Human Resources, led strategic areas of the campaign. The CelebrateUS team partnered with ECHO, an employee-driven group with a focus on multiculturalism; the Giving Committee, coordinators of the company's philanthropic efforts; and the Green Team, focused on sustainability, to promote a fun and meaningful workplace.

"It is clear that our CelebrateUS campaign had an impact given that our year-over-year employee satisfaction scores increased in all categories," said Leslie Lenser, Valassis Vice President, Human Resources. "Employee pride and camaraderie rose to the top, giving us even more reason to celebrate."

Valassis will be presented the Arbor Award on March 8 at a ceremony at the Detroit Institute of Arts.


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