Benefits and Perks

Every organization seems to be taking a long look at benefit programs.  Insurance co-pays are being revised, paid time off more scrutinized, raises are non-existent, and accountability and productivity are more carefully monitored.  Many firms are also reconsidering the perks they offer employees.  Gone mostly, are the generous free snacks in break rooms, flex time, parking privilege, and many other long treasured employee “extras.”

All of these changes can negatively impact morale – especially among long-term employees who have grown used to “the good life.”  Since morale is such an important factor in any smooth running operation, some managers have looked for inexpensive ways to show appreciation and to foster pride in employment. 

Recognition for years of service is important to most people.  Nothing works better than a little praise every now and then, if sincere.  I am not necessarily recommending a regularly scheduled “employee of the month sort of thing.”  Rather, a note, a token of recognition, or an extra afternoon off.  Surprise breakfast at company expense always seems to work… and for bosses that can… a smile is worth a lot!

My point is simple:  benefits are expensive and perks may even cost a little, but will more than pay for themselves in terms of employee satisfaction and loyalty.