A Love Affair: Why People Continue to Come Back to Deer Valley Year After Year

It’s easy to think of ski resort jobs as seasonal, temporary positions, made for those who want to live a laid-back lifestyle so that they can ski every day. Yet within Park City, Utah, one of the most iconic ski towns in America, Deer Valley Resort has cultivated a community of employees that feels more like family than coworkers. There’s an emphasis on guest service that includes the employees themselves, and often seasonal jobs grow into careers. Understandably, Deer Valley sees an employee retention rate of more than 65 percent. With 800 summer employees and 2,800 winter employees, this is a remarkable number for a seasonal company. So how do they do it and why do employees come back to Deer Valley year after year?

Ski Passes

Enjoying a powder day at Deer Valley.
Enjoying a powder day at Deer Valley.

Deer Valley Resort

Sure, including a ski pass in a benefit package is an enticing allure for any ski resort, but Deer Valley has taken this expectation one step further: Not only do employees receive a pass for themselves, but they’re also provided free Deer Valley lift tickets to give to their family or friends. Like to snowboard too? Don’t worry, Deer Valley offers reciprocal benefits at other local resorts so you can enjoy the best of both worlds.

Learn to Ski for Free

Ski school at Deer Valley.
Ski school at Deer Valley.

Deer Valley Resort

Love the snow and mountains, but don’t yet know how to ski? Don’t let that deter you from joining the Deer Valley team. Take advantage of free ski lessons a few times throughout the season depending on your employee status. Then you can really put all of these perks to good use.

Discounts on Additional Services

The Mariposa is one of the top-rated restaurants in Utah.
The Mariposa is one of the top-rated restaurants in Utah.

Deer Valley Resort

Deer Valley is so much more than a ski resort, and as an employee you get to enjoy discounts on all of their offerings. This includes resort lodging, snowmobiling, equipment rentals, lessons for your immediate family members, and childcare. Additionally, you’ll receive some two-for-one dining vouchers to use in the evening restaurants, which includes Utah’s #1 Zagat-rated restaurant, The Mariposa. In the summer, you’ll enjoy the two-for-one bonus for the outdoor concert series, which attracts world-renowned artists and local bands alike.

Sense of Community

Camaraderie and respect is evident among the staff.
Camaraderie and respect is evident among the staff.

Deer Valley Resort

When asking Deer Valley employees, what they love most about their jobs, a typical answer includes their co-workers. The recruiting team focuses on bringing in happy, spirited people with whom they themselves would want to work. As Derek Althof, the Ski School Training Manger, going on his eighth winter season at Deer Valley says: "The skiing and mountain biking benefits are great, but my co-workers are better. There is a very strong sense of community here, and I am proud to be a part of the Deer Valley family."

Guest service is central to Deer Valley’s business, and it is built around their Three-Circle Model: take care of guests, take care of the resort, and take care of each other. This model sets them apart and not only creates world-class guest experiences, but a more enjoyable and productive work environment for the staff. By focusing on these three circles of care, Deer Valley has created a supportive community that feels like family and makes it easier for everyone to do their jobs.

Affordable Housing

Deer Valley places a huge emphasis on cultivating a family environment, and nothing says family like a home. They’ve taken time to think through the challenges of living and working in a resort town, one of which is affordable housing. Approximately 300 employees take advantage of this added perk and have options right in Park City as well as in nearby Heber City. And to make the distance a non-issue, free employee shuttles are provided from Heber City and the Salt Lake valley.

Holistic Community Engagement

Main Street offers plenty of entertainment options.
Main Street offers plenty of entertainment options.

Deer Valley Resort.

Deer Valley doesn’t shy away from the fact that one of its added benefits is the town in which it is located. The historic mining town of Park City, Utah, offers so much to its citizens and guests. Deer Valley partners with many local businesses to provide discounts to their employees so that they can get out and enjoy the town. Ultimately, this is an added value to out-of-town guests when employees are able to recommend the greatest nearby attractions.

Live Well

Skiing the groomed trails at Deer Valley.
Skiing the groomed trails at Deer Valley.

Deer Valley Resort

Deer Valley recognizes that life outside of work is just as impactful on work performance as one’s work environment. The resort encourages its employees to participate in free educational programs, like English or Spanish as a second language, and its wellness program. Many employees love the outdoors and enjoy participating in events or races. Deer Valley will reimburse its employees for participation in physical events like marathons, bike races, and triathlons.

Celebrate Your Efforts

Employees at Deer Valley can take advantage of plenty of time on the mountain.
Employees at Deer Valley can take advantage of plenty of time on the mountain.

Deer Valley Resort

It feels good to be praised for your hard work. Deer Valley has numerous employee parties and employee appreciation events. This includes mid-season and end-of-season parties incorporating monthly drawings, which offer prizes from skis to Utah Jazz tickets to restaurant vouchers. Since so many employees return year after year, the resort hosts a "Years of Service" dinner to celebrate its long-term employees. Nearly half of Deer Valley’s winter employees have worked there for more than five years—181 have been there for more than 21 years and 16 employees have worked for Deer Valley since it first started spinning its lifts in 1981.

Originally written by RootsRated for Deer Valley.

Featured image provided by Deer Valley Resort

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It was a beautiful bluebird day at Deer Valley Resort.
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It was a beautiful bluebird day at Deer Valley Resort.

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Bob GarretsonKevin Willy was unbelievable good. Very quickly found three things I was doing wrong in my ski form. Working to correcting these mistakes and had me enjoying skiing again within an hour. Wow

7 hours ago   ·  1
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Sibyl BogardusLoved my tune up lesson today with Kevin Willy! The snow was a surprising good mix. Deer Valley snow crew and groomer staff are amaaazing!

13 hours ago
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Ed KennedyHad a great time today.

17 hours ago
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Cheri Bullerman SeymourI Love Deer Valley Skiing!

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Terri DenningHow’s the snow

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John TredentYes it was..

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Dixie KarpinskyLove dear valley

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Cheryl HlozekI ❤️Deer Valley

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Andrew WellsBlow that stuff!!

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Peggy Jane LackeyWow

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Jared JARachel Anderson

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Alex TalaricoSean Lawrence

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Deer Valley Resort shared KUTV 2News This Morning's Winter Road Trippin' at Deer Valley - Goldener Hirsch Restaurant.

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Caitlin West is Road Trippin' at Deer Valley Resort and she's sampling the delicious menu available at the Goldener Hirsch Restaurant.

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Joanne FlanaganKristi Chapman Young isn't this our apre ski place?😉

1 day ago   ·  1

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Kc Fiedler"sexy, stinky, swiss cheese"

1 day ago   ·  1
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Kristy French GrahamLooking forward to New Year’s Eve!!

23 hours ago
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Scot AsherSheila Asher

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Deer Valley Resort shared KUTV 2News This Morning's Winter Road Trippin' at Deer Valley - Avalanche Dogs.

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Caitlin West is Road Trippin' at Deer Valley Resort and introduces us to Ninja and Rooster, two of the avalanche dogs that work on the mountains and keep people safe.

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Erik JonswoldIf anything I have to turn down the tickets I got for my parents who are visiting me for the Christmas week... I gave them my free tickets but I guess I let them down... thank you Deer Valley for for me working full time and I was sick for firing me and ruining Christmas

9 hours ago
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Erik JonswoldI used to work full time at deer valley but was sick for 3 days and they let me go... right after I found myself a own studio and I won’t be able to afford if i can’t work again

9 hours ago
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Erik JonswoldI was sick for a couple days and in the hospital and tried to get my job back but got let go... help me get my job back help do ski instructing?

9 hours ago
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Eric AlexanderYeah Sue..!! These dogs work the summer too and they are the best..!

2 days ago   ·  1
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Anne SorensonAre you working there this season?

21 hours ago
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Matt N BentleySue you killed it! 😄

2 days ago   ·  1
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Sheryl BarberLove my Rooster!

2 days ago
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Brad LazarusSo California.....

Attachment60 minutes ago
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MaryEllen BighamGreat place to ski!

2 days ago
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Shay M. WeaverBeau Burrows Addie Weaver Bill Weaver Larry would be GREAT at this 👏🏼👍🏼

2 days ago
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Sue Stevenson MikulskiAwww Paul Mikulski

2 days ago
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Chrissy SudlerHi Susan! 🙌🏼

17 hours ago
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