Company Culture

Why Boulder Consistently Tops Best Places to Work Lists

Ben Travis
November 16, 2018
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Being a “Best Place to Work” is a great honor for any company, and this year we were featured by Outside Magazine in their 50 Best Places to Work list. The list is based on how well organizations balance work, giving back to the community, and enjoying the outdoors.

We love calling Boulder our home, and so do many other companies on Outside’s list. Our hometown here in Colorado has been called the happiest, most-educated, and healthiest city in America, but hearing from our neighbors who were also featured in Outside’s list paints a specific picture of what makes Boulder so special.

We hope these stories inspire you to consider what makes your company and your own city special. Understanding and appreciating why you are where you are might teach you something about your company culture and employer brand.

Here’s what Avid4Adventure, CampMinder, Asia Transpacific Journeys, TrainingPeaks, Shambhala Publications, and Creative Alignments shared with us about why Boulder is the perfect place for their companies:

Opportunity for recreation


This probably comes as no surprise, but Boulder is a mecca for cyclists, long distance runners, hikers, climbers, and many other outdoor enthusiasts. At about one mile above sea level, Boulder provides a great training area for athletes. It’s also nestled in a valley at the foot of the Rocky Mountains, which means easy access to beautiful scenery and winter sports.

Avid4 Adventure has been based in Boulder since our inception in 2004. It's hard to know whether we chose Boulder or Boulder chose Avid4 Adventure. Both the community of people here and the physical landscape are just such natural fits for what we do and who we are. Of course, the physical environment in Boulder easily allows us to "walk our talk" from an adventure stand point. Our mission is to empower kids to choose active and healthy lifestyles in the outdoors, and in Boulder, we are able to live that mission as a staff. On a monthly basis, our whole team gets outside together for group recreation days, and on a daily basis, we are all grateful for the out-the-door opportunities to hike, bike, climb, and paddle.
–Paul Dreyer, CEO,
Avid4 Adventure

Colorado’s sunny climate and access to the outdoors encourage our team members to balance their professional responsibilities with an active lifestyle, and to even blend the two. Team members regularly make time for runs or bike rides during the workday and walking meetings are an everyday occurrence. This focus on healthy living contributes to employee engagement and helps prevent stress and burnout in the face of ambitious goals and deadlines. This appreciation for our natural surroundings also mirrors Camps’ focus on nature, which connects us to our clients on a deep level.
–Analiese Brown, Director of Talent & Culture,

ATJ was founded in Boulder, Colorado in 1987, in the basement of our founder's home. 31 years later, still with a very deep-rooted passion for exploration, adventure, connectivity, and discovery for travel to Asia and the Pacific, our team and our philosophy continue to be inspired by the lifestyle and the surroundings of our own backyard. Our staff's energy and foundation thrives on clean air, beautiful blue skies, a healthy lifestyle, urban and rural environments, landscapes and vistas that are beyond compare.
–Kirsten Louy-Nasty, CEO,
Asia Transpacific Journeys

TrainingPeaks is proud to be located in Boulder, a community focused on fostering an active lifestyle and pushing technology bounds. With incredible outdoor access, Boulder is known as a training mecca, and our products focus on helping athletes and coaches achieve their best. It’s exciting to know that many of our TrainingPeaks users are located in our own backyard. As a software company, we love being a part of the greater Boulder tech scene that is both supportive and ever-growing. On top of all of that, the mountain views aren’t half bad! It’s a huge perk to be able to head out on a bike ride or trail run during your lunch break—chances are your boss or coworkers may just join in too.
–Lauren Smith, HR Coordinator,

Community values


As a college town (Go Buffs!), a product of the American West, a magnet for hippies, and now a tech hub, Boulder is certainly unique. Some call it 25 square miles surrounded by reality, but our community is strong, and our values seep into everything we do.

Perhaps even more importantly than the physical landscape of Boulder, we are grateful to work in Boulder because the people here share our core values. Boulder values environmental protection—at Avid, we Live Environmentally Connected. Boulder values community engagement and alternative perspectives—at Avid, we Live Community and Live Balanced. Boulder has the ability to laugh at itself and strives to keep getting better—at Avid, we Live Gratitude and Live Smarter.
–Paul Dreyer, CEO,
Avid4 Adventure

Boulder’s spirit of consciousness attracts people who prioritize a mindful, healthy lifestyle. Being around people who are fulfilled contributes to a work environment that positively impacts our clients. One client remarked in a recent survey, ‘I love that all of the customer service people are happy, helpful, and kind.’
–Analiese Brown, Director of Talent & Culture,

We moved our entire company here from the East Coast in 2015 after a comprehensive search for a new location. We chose Boulder because for us it more than met our key criteria: we can be much more engaged with a community of people who are passionate about the kinds of books we publish; there is a talent pool of highly intelligent and creative people; and it offers a high quality of life for our team—especially regarding outdoor activities. Boulder became an obvious choice, and the fact that almost our whole staff moved across the country is a testament to the choice we made.
–Nikko Odiseos, President,
Shambhala Publications



The talent pool in Boulder is filled with enthusiastic people who want to make a difference. With a mix of artists, entrepreneurs, academics, and social impact champions, employers have a wide range of talent to pull from, which is doubly impressive considering the city’s relative size.

With its proximity to CU and local coding bootcamps, CampMinder’s Boulder location offers access to a rich ecosystem of technical talent, an environment further enriched by organizations such as Boulder Startup Week and Silicon Flatirons. Boulder’s favorable economy, robust job market, and atmosphere of innovation attracts a highly skilled workforce, ensuring a strong recruiting pipeline for open positions.
–Analiese Brown, Director of Talent & Culture,

It’s easy to love the beautiful town of Boulder, mountain trails out the backdoor, a world-class university, and endless outdoor activities. But what we love most about basing Creative Alignments in Boulder is the people who are attracted to the area. Both companies and individuals seek out the active, casual lifestyle, the communities of intelligent, interesting people, and a beautiful place they can put down roots. This attracts talented people and companies that want to offer their employees something they can’t find many other places. Boulder has a rich history of entrepreneurs launching their successful businesses locally, especially in natural products and high tech, our two areas of focus. This trend continues today. Boulder has about six times the number of high tech start-ups than the national average, and is a hub for natural and organic products. Boulder also has a large number of non-profit organizations and a thriving arts community. There’s something in the air here that attracts and inspires great minds and kind hearts -- just the kind of people we want to employ.
–Shenna Fitzgerald, Marketing Director,
Creative Alignments

And more


There are plenty of other reasons why Boulder consistently ranks high for health, happiness, and other factors. There are plenty of other great places to work, but it’s hard to imagine being anywhere else!

There are so many more reasons why we love Boulder. There is incredible food and coffee and beer here. The city sponsors a Tube to Work Day. Bike commuting is incredibly easy and fun (e.g. usually the bike paths are plowed before most streets). There is an entrepreneurial energy that is tangible and exciting.
–Paul Dreyer, CEO,
Avid4 Adventure

We’d love to hear about what makes your city a great place to work. Tag us on social media (@bonusly) and leave a comment!

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