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Motivate Employees With Perks That Scream Your Culture

employee_benefits_perksEmployees like perks. The extra benefits that motivate them to stay longer on tough days become the stories they tell to their friends at parties, and form a weight that might tip their job satisfaction scales. According to a recent research by Glassdoor, nearly three in five people said benefits and perks were their top considerations before accepting a job.

Performance bonuses, healthcare insurance, paid holiday and sick leave are the employees’ favourites. However, the talent market is competitive, so HR managers need outside-the-box perks to set their company apart while not breaking the bank. One way to do this is to tie perks to the company culture.

A strong organisational culture drives employee performance and boosts the business’ bottom line. In a report published in the Harvard Business Review, Lindsay McGregor and Neel Doshi describe the link between higher customer satisfaction and stronger workplace culture in various industries. They argue that a high-performing culture can be engineered in the business’ processes, such as role design, community, and performance review. So you want perks that compliment these processes.

Let’s look at how aspects of a company’s culture, such as work-life balance, workplace wellbeing, and empowerment, can be translated into perks, examples from the top companies and some suggestions.

Work-life Balance

A healthy balance between work and life increases job satisfaction. Smart HR managers understand that if you burnout an employee through overwork, she becomes difficult or impossible to work with. The balance between time at office and holiday must be made right.

AirBnB gives each employee $2,000 a year to travel the world. Its investors must believe in this and many of its other policies because the startup just raised an extra $1 billion in June.

You could even go one step further by awarding language training so that your staff can fully immerse themselves in the foreign places they travel to during their holiday.

Workplace wellbeing

Some say well-being is the key to motivation. Holidays aside, employees need some relaxing time at work. If they find a pingpong table or a couple of yoga mats, they know you are committed.

Startups are compensating for often long-hour work days with initiatives to make offices more like a playground. Dropbox has fully equipped music studio and game rooms, while AirBnB arranges weekly Yoga classes for their staff.

It might not be always possible to do what Google has done to its headquarters: cafeteria with homegrown organic produce, volleyball courts, heated swimming pools, massage therapy, fitness classes and an indoor slide. However, you should definitely start somewhere, like healthy lunches on Thursdays or a meditation room.

Organising social events for staff also helps with building a community and culture. Check out Eventbrite: They were voted as one of the best places to work in 2014 and 2015 in the Bay Area. The company encourages its employees to socialise: having breakfast, going on bike rides, and even enjoying the trampoline park together.

If you have a diverse workforce, a language club could be a good idea. Its the chance for one to practise speaking a foreign language with a native speaker, and also to talk to a colleague that she might not work with directly. It helps increase the sense of community and promote team communication.


Throughout history, humans have never stopped fighting for their freedom and the right to live the way they want. In the smaller scale of a company, employees are not different. They appreciate autonomy in choosing their task, as well as when and where to do it. If it is your culture to empower your staff, the best perks are flexible time and homeworking.

Liberate your employees from stressful long hour commutes. Let new parents have more time being close to their children. Enable flexitime, whether it’s four days of ten hours per week, or allowing an early finish for an early start.

The HR manager can design a role in a way that makes working from home as effective as being at the office. Besides, you can support your team at their home by adopting technology like cloud-based storage, reliable video-conferencing and innovative collaboration platforms. Training can also be done online to offer more flexibility to your staff.

CEOs and HR managers are to take the lead in engineering a high-performing culture. Don’t limit yourself to telling stories about the values of the company. Give your employees the perks that scream the culture. Then, they would tell the story for you.


Quynh Nguyen writes about productivity for individuals and teams while travelling the world. She loves learning languages, riding a bike and having many nice cups of tea. Connect with her @QuynhThuNguyen or visit her at www.quynh.nl

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