Understanding what makes an employee feel appreciated is not always as easy as it seems. What works for one junior member of staff may rile a more senior worker – and vice-versa.
Benefits packages are an essential part for the reward and recognition portfolio, and one which companies couldn’t do without. So why are so many leaders missing the mark when it comes to perks?
We spoke to Carolyn Swora, Pinnacle Culture’s Workplace Culture Architect - and upcoming speaker at HRD Canada’s exclusive benefits webinar - who gave us her thoughts on the topic.
“Perks aren’t going to have the same meaning to employees if the behaviors in the workplace aren’t aligned,” she told us. “It’s like giving a present to someone and asking them to forgive bad behaviour.
“Employers have to make sure that behaviour in the workplace is optimized, so that when you do have perks they have meaning for your staff – and they’re not wasted or received badly.
“Perks are important, but they’re not everything. They are part of the equation, but they will be accepted by the employees the way the employer intended them to be if people don’t feel valued at work.”
So, how can employers ensure that the perks they are offering are aligned well with company values? Carolyn advises including workers in the original conversation.
“Where possible, include employee on a committee panel before you go making big investments in lavish programs. Flexibility it also really important. Perks that allow employees to live and work within a flexible schedule are very much sought-after. This could be time to take their children to school, or take a parent to the doctor, and not having to worry about taking a whole day’s worth of annual leave.”
As for rolling out on-size-fits-all benefits plans, Carolyn advocates listening to what employees really need – rather than jumping the gun with assumptions.
“The biggest mistake employers make is in thinking that a perk or an initiative will make employees grateful and want to stay with them. It’s part of the picture but it’s certainly not the whole picture.”
You could say, when you have value within the organization and a benefits package that reflects this, it’s a win-win situation.
To hear more about how your organization can benefit from a comprehensive perks package, sign up to our upcoming webinar – Beyond the Paycheque – here.