What is the purpose of a modern business? The Business Roundtable, a group of CEOs from almost 200 leading US corporations, recently suggested one answer extensively quoted by CNBC – and it’s a multi-facetted answer of which one key component is “investing in our employees”.
It’s a useful starting point for answering the question concerning how, in 2020, forward-looking businesses are catering well for their employees. The Roundtable’s statement mentions “important benefits” and supporting staff “through training and education” – perhaps in the following ways…
Encouraging Better Physical Health
In one survey mentioned by The Muse, American workers primarily blamed their jobs for their own health shortcomings. It’s an unsurprising statistic when you consider that, according to research, sitting for hours at a time can lead weight, blood pressure and blood sugar levels to all increase.
It makes sense, then, that more companies have introduced on-site fitness programs or classes. These days, even gyms are not unusual on the premises of large companies, while Capital One has lent its associates free bikes to use in getting around campus.
Providing Means of Improved Mental Health
In a 2015 survey, 53% of American and Canadian workers reported feeling burnt out. It seems timely, then, that public awareness concerning the merits of mindfulness and meditation could well be stronger than ever, leading companies to unveil rooms, training and retreats to suit.
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For a company, giving employees the tools they need for relaxation can be as simple as implementing the Employee Assistance Programme from LifeWorks. This move would effectively provide a software-based access portal to 80,000 counsellors, coaches and other professionals.
Studied show that companies investing in improving the mental health of employees are doing way better than the ones not doing so!
Offering Quirky – But Still Practically Useful – Job Perks
While certain workplace benefits can look like gimmicks on the surface, perhaps you should take a closer look. Consider the example of the outdoor clothing brand Patagonia. As Business News Daily explains, Patagonia allows its employees to occasionally surf during the workday.
That would be no small benefit, given the well-documented dangers of workplace life to physical health, as previously noted. The California firm also offers its staff access to volleyball courts.
If you are a small business that may not offer anything like this, you can simply plan a small scale employee field day every now and then to keep them motivated.
Allowing Staff to Work More Flexibly
Another example of a peculiar perk comes from Netflix: no official work hours. In other words, staff don’t need to track either work hours or time off; all that matters is that they get their assigned work done. Such flexible hours can be especially appealing to time-strapped working parents.
Companies could experiment with flexible hours through, for example, letting staff settle on their own start and end times and work from home for one or two days weekly.
Supporting Staff from Various Backgrounds
Whatever benefits a company is preparing for its staff, the business would be well-advised to resist a “one-size-fits-all” template. To this end, it could give staff time off for volunteering – for causes especially crucial to them – and help them to fund unconventional healthcare treatments.
Basically, the objective here would be supporting employees who have different needs they must meet in order to hit maximum productivity.