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Bottom line profit and growth are usually the most important goals for companies, and one of the biggest contributing factors to making sure a company continues to grow is the happiness of it’s employees.
Companies that offer lavish perks to their employees have received a lot of attention lately, but things like free food, on site childcare, and office gyms don’t necessary always make employees happy.
Before you spend most of your budget on expensive things to attract and retain talent, you should know there are many more creative ways to make your employees happy. If happy hours are beginning to feel stale, but a new, lavish office space might be out of reach, there is a middle ground achievable for every company. While the saying goes, “you can’t make everyone happy,” we are here to prove this wrong with these 5 office-perks to make all employees happy:
Not all employee are the same, and no one office perk will make your whole company happy. For instance, employees with children are going to be enticed by more time off or flexible hours, while younger or new employees may want things like company social events. Managers should make an effort to have one-on-ones with employees and ask them what the office can do to keep them happy.
A common mistake many managers make is offering perks that have an agenda other than simply making employees happy. For instance, coercing employees to attend a ‘team-building’ event over the weekend might come off as a chore rather than a perk to some. By asking before scheduling events like these you are ensuring each employee’s voice is heard, and these events will make them, not just their managers, happy.
Having an in-house gym is great, but for companies that don’t have this available, or even those that do, there are other, sometimes better, alternatives. By promoting intra-office running or hiking clubs, or covering the fees for your employees to attend local races or walks, you show employees their lives outside of the office matter to the company. These events are a fun way for employees to do what makes them happy with coworkers, and promotes a close-knit office culture full of energy. To find out more about why this is so important, read our blog post “How Company Culture Translates Into Revenue.”
If you haven’t heard by now, one of the most popular perks many large and well-known companies offer is unlimited free food in the office. This allows employees the freedom to stop worrying about packing lunches, and focus more on their tasks at hand. But realistically for most companies, offering free food to all employees is just not in the budget. Here at Hoopla one thing we do is offer employees a drink fridge, and while it may not seem like a lot, it goes a long way. Whether it be coffee, juices or the occasional happy hour drink, it makes ensure employees can take small breaks throughout the day and stay productive. Also, offering free snacks, or the occasional catered lunch during busy periods helps employees feel valued and in turn, keeps them happy.
Company sponsored off-sites are another great way to show your employees you value their happiness. By company off-site we do not mean you should plan extravagant holiday parties, and while these are great once a year, they will not drive employee happiness at your company. By holding fun and casual off-sites every few months, or even around company achievements, you will keep employees happy and engaged. At Hoopla we try to change these events up, from hosting get-togethers at wineries to racing each other at the local go-cart arena. By keeping these events fun and employee-centric you ensure these become something people want to attend rather than feel they need to attend.
While awards, gift cards and bonuses are a great way to reward employees, what often means more to your employees is offering something personalized for them. Here at Hoopla we use Blueboard Rewards Platform to reward employees on big company anniversaries. This means instead of thanking our employees all the same way, everyone chooses their own experience from the Blueboard site. For instance, we have had employees do everything from cooking and trapeze lessons, to a week of training at the local boxing gym, and even a day of relaxation at the spa. While we use Blueboard, every company is different and may use a different systems. The important part is to reward your employees in an innovative way that shows them you are invested in their work and personal success.
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Linnea Goldstein is a Marketing Co-op and Northeastern University senior, working in communications, marketing and public relations. When Linnea isn’t at work she enjoys reading, sailing and being outside.
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