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Lucky 13

January 20, 2011 / 2 min read

The number 13 sends a mixed message. While some people claim that it’s unlucky—there’s even a phobia related to it—others disagree. Wilt Chamberlain, Shaquille O’Neal, Dan Marino, and Alex Rodriguez have even worn the number of their jerseys for good luck.

While I have no opinion on the matter, I can argue that 13 is certainly lucky for Plante & Moran this year. Earlier today, we learned that the firm was #26 on FORTUNE magazine’s list of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” for the 13th year in a row. While this is a great honor, it becomes an exceptional one when you consider that 2/3 of the score is based on staff answers to an anonymous survey inquiring about everything from communication to fairness to training and development. It feels great to know that our staff enjoy working at Plante & Moran as much as I do.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my 30+ years at the firm and why this place is so special. The culture, of course, is the foundation for everything else. It’s what attracted me to the firm and why I chose to spend my career here. Then there’s the clients I get to work with, the principles I get to work by, and the firm’s reputation—the fact that, wherever I go, I can say I’m from Plante & Moran and hear something positive about the firm or one of its staff members in return. Frank Moran used to say that work should be fun and that, if you enjoy what to do, you’ll never have to “work” a day in your life. I’m happy to say that, by that standard, I’ve “worked” very few.

We, at Plante & Moran, are very fortunate. We get to work with great clients who challenge us to be the best client servers we can be. We have bright, caring, energetic, motivated staff who all work together to propel our firm forward. At the end of the day, though, our survival has had very little to do with luck.  We’ve spent more than 85 years being very purposeful about perpetuating and improving upon the ideals and culture of the firm, including selecting the best staff and clients and focusing on retaining them. We’re proud of this recognition, because it’s validation that our efforts have been worthwhile.

What about you? What do you enjoy most about working at your organization? What makes you feel fortunate?

To see the “100 Best” list in its entirety, go to

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