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What Makes McGraw-Hill an Exciting Place to Work? A Q & A With Our Chief Culture & Talent Officer

A sit-down discussion with Sheila O'Neil following McGraw-Hill making Forbes' America's Best Midsize Employees 2019 list.

Tags: Article, Career & Workforce, Career Opportunities, Corporate

McGraw-Hill is proud to have recently been acknowledged by Forbes on its annual America’s Best Midsize Employers list for 2019, coming in at #37 – up from #52 in 2018.

To learn a bit more about what makes McGraw-Hill a special place to work and what sets it apart from other companies, we sat with Sheila O’Neill, our Chief Culture and Talent Officer, to ask her a few questions.

Question: We just made the Forbes America’s Best Midsize Employers. What do you think makes McGraw-Hill unique and such a great company to work for?

Sheila: McGraw-Hill is a global company and has offices across the U.S. and around the world. And we have an incredibly diverse array of roles within the company – from instructional design and product management, to sales and marketing, to customer service, engineering and more.

However, the common thread that flows across everything we do and everywhere we work is our mission of unlocking the potential of each learner and the great seriousness with which we take our role within the education ecosystem. Education is the great equalizer in our society and each of us works with a pride, knowing we’re helping students learn more and succeed.

Question: What do you think differentiates us from other companies when seeking out new talent?

Sheila: Our mission is a key part of it. People want to feel that their work is going to make a difference and contribute to the greater good.

Employees also value the flexibility we provide. We have hundreds of employees who work remotely or work from home part of the time. Our technology infrastructure makes it easy to work with a team, whether you’re in an office or at home.

We’re also incredibly proud of our culture of inclusivity and diversity. We regularly invite speakers into our office to talk to employees via livestream on topics related to diversity and inclusion, and it’s a key focus for our managers and leaders. This translates into a work environment where we’re all encouraged to flourish and grow our strengths.

Question: What sorts of characteristics or traits do you look for in candidates for positions?

Sheila: We have five core values at McGraw-Hill that guide our focus across the organization:  Speak out. Stretch forward. Own it. Deliver value. Win together. We find that employees who embody these values succeed in whatever roles they have, and end up delivering the most value to the company.

“Stretch forward” is one of my favorites. Research shows that we learn best when we’re pushed just beyond our comfort zone. At McGraw-Hill, we encourage employees to take on projects that help them stretch their skills and build off of their strengths. Successful employees see those challenges and seize them as opportunities.