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The reclusive In-N-Out heiress opens up about how she made a fast-food chain one of America's best places to work

I Am Second/YouTubeIn-N-Out’s owner is a billionaire heiress who knows how to make employees happy.
  • Lynsi Snyder has been president of In-N-Out since 2010 and inherited the family-owned business this year.
  • The burger chain is No. 4 on Glassdoor’s 2018 list of best places to work, based on employee reviews, beating out tech giants like Google and Microsoft.
  • In-N-Out is the only restaurant chain in the top 50 companies on Glassdoor’s list.
  • To earn a top spot, Snyder said, she listens to her employees, trains managers with flexibility, and provides fun perks that keep associates happy.

Lynsi Snyder, the president of In-N-Out and its sole heiress, has moulded the fast-food chain into one of the best places to work in the US.

Employees who reviewed the company on the jobs and recruiting site Glassdoor said they loved the chain and considered it the best restaurant to work for, thanks in large part to Snyder’s initiatives and leadership. She received a 97% approval rating from her employees on Glassdoor.

In-N-Out, which has nearly 330 restaurants in six states and was valued at $US1.1 billion in 2013, ranked fourth on Glassdoor’s 2018 list of best places to work, behind Facebook, Bain & Company, and Boston Consulting Group. This is In-N-Out’s fourth consecutive and fifth overall appearance.

Despite being the president of one of America’s favourite fast-food chains, Snyder is noticeably private.

But in an exclusive interview with Glassdoor posted Tuesday, Snyder shared how she helped turn In-N-Out into one of the best workplaces.

More than burger flips

“Listening to our associates is a serious priority for me,” Snyder said. “My hope is that anyone who spends time as an In-N-Out associate finds the experience valuable – an opportunity to learn and grow, and to have fun.”

According to Glassdoor’s data, associates at In-N-Out earn, on average, $US12.27 an hour. For comparison, McDonald’s crew members earn an average of $US8.45 an hour, and that figure is $US8.25 for those at Burger King.

But Snyder says it takes more than pay and perks to show employees you are invested in them.

“We spend a lot of time doing activities together – we have annual trips, we play sports, and every year we have several trips to my Dad’s ranch, sometimes for workshops and play, sometimes just for In-N-Out family time,” Snyder said.

Of her employees, Snyder said, “They are the reason for our success, and they deserve to enjoy coming to work, to feel appreciated, and to be treated like family, which is what I consider them.”

In N Out employeeTommaso Boddi/Getty

Finding the right people

Snyder says In-N-Out’s culture is so positive because of its employees.

“The associates actually create that themselves by being so upbeat and enthusiastic,” she said.

That’s why she’s deliberate about hiring the right people and giving them opportunities to grow within the company.

Snyder said many of In-N-Out’s managers started at entry-level positions in the chain. While training employees for leadership roles, the burger chain’s president focuses on flexibility, she said.

“This is also good for our culture, but it means there is no shortcut to growing great leaders through training,” Snyder said. “Aside from that, our associates have told us that when they are growing and learning new things, they are more engaged in their job.”

Snyder says she doesn’t have to talk publicly often to be a great leader – instead, she said, she strives to communicate her positive message to employees internally.

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