Try these Budget-Friendly, Great Work Perks to Boost Employee Loyalty
Would you describe your employees as loyal to your business? Your answer reveals much about your organization – its internal culture, staff engagement, and ultimately, customer satisfaction and retention.
Loyal employees are faithful to the success of their organization and carry feelings of responsibility and devotion. They also believe the organization wants what is best for them. The reciprocal nature of this mutually beneficial relationship takes effort from leadership. Large-scale gestures are nice, but the smallest actions can often feel the most meaningful. Discover some affordable, great work perks to boost your employees’ loyalty.
Something is amiss in the U.S. workforce when it comes to employee loyalty and engagement. Since the year 2000, Gallup has tracked employee engagement and has found that less than one-third of U.S. employees have been engaged in their jobs and workplaces during the last 15 years. Gallup defines engaged employees as those who are involved in, enthusiastic about and committed to their work and workplace.
This lack of engagement represents lost productivity and money. The annual price tag is an estimated $450 to $550 in the U.S. alone. Disengaged employees also cost you in the form of disgruntled customers, lower creativity levels, a negative company culture, and increased sick days.
Why the emphasis on engagement? Because employee engagement cannot exist without employee loyalty. Focus on building employee loyalty and engagement will take care of itself.
Great Work Perks
Over the years, the Gallup findings have spawned an array of engagement, loyalty, and happiness assessments. But simply measuring these indicators does nothing to improve them.
Bruce Peters, Founder of Beyond Teal, specializes in guiding business leaders to creating a thriving work environment that allows staff to work to their highest potential. He observes, “The companies that are successful, regardless of assessment scores, are the ones that actually use the score to improve. They ask themselves, ‘What has to happen for the number to be better?'”
Peters says that there are fundamental basics that all employees want from their work environment. They want meaningful connections with their fellow workers, a path for future development, and a boss who nurtures these first two things. The following work perks can help you be that boss. Some require more effort than others, but all are budget-friendly for even the smallest of enterprises.
· Show Your Loyalty to Your Staff. Nearly one-third of employees would rather be recognized in company-wide email from an executive than receive a bonus of $500. Employees want their talents and potential to be acknowledged because it validates that their efforts are meaningful to the organization. An email, flowers on a first-year anniversary of being hired, a thank you gift, or note are just a few ways to express appreciation. “The more personal you make the recognition, the better it will be received because it represents the relationship,” says Peters.
· Welcome Pets. Research shows that having a pet or even petting a dog can reduce stress and improve morale. Why not bring those benefits into the workplace? In fact, 82 percent of employees say a pet-friendly workplace improves loyalty.
· Emphasize Relationships. Holiday parties, after-hours socials, and picnics are one way to strengthen relationships among staff members. Peters recommends making it even more impactful by asking each employee to find someone new and different, learn what they can about them and then share their findings.
· Establish Communities of Practice. Communities of practices are teams built across departments around functional expertise. Not only do they break down the silo mentality, but they are both an excellent way for employees to build meaningful relationships and bring more of their talent to an organization. Wellness committees, book clubs, or even a group rallied around exploring new industry technologies are all examples.
· Practice Good Citizenship. Considering that 85 percent of employees said they were likely to stay longer with an employer that showed a high level of social responsibility, you may want to practice good citizenship. Establishing a volunteer day, implementing green energy and waste reduction practices, or providing a mentorship opportunity with local schools are all ways businesses can give back to their community.
Investing effort into these perks benefits more than your employees. A business with loyal employees is a competitive business. How so? Loyal employees tend to be more engaged and happier at work, which over time, give your business a reputation as an excellent place to work. When it comes to talent acquisition, where do you think the top candidates will go?