While I was self-employed running my own business, I had an amazing employee who was a hard worker, very efficient, always on time and always coming up with new, profitable ideas. After about 2 years of working with me, I heard through other employees that she was thinking of leaving. I did what any logical boss would in that position, I offered her a promotion to a LOT higher earnings and a more senior position.
She turned it down. For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out why. I decided to bite the bullet and call her in and ask her what she would want to stay. She was very clear. She didn’t want more money, more hours or more responsibility. She wanted a way to give back to the community. The work she was doing was enjoyable and challenging, but she felt that she was unfulfilled in her broader duties to society.
So with her heading up the team, we set up a system where employees could take two weeks off every year, fully paid, to go and volunteer at any local charity to make a real difference to society. She stayed with us for 3 more years.
If you’re after other non-financial ways to help your employees stay with you longer, this is the post for you.
Rewarding my employees is important to me, and I've found non-financial rewards are just as effective in increasing productivity and employee relationships as financial rewards or bonuses. I ensure to always praise employees when they've done great work, regardless of how small or large the project was. I also embrace an open door policy, in which I'm always available to chat if they need me. Similarly, I frequently reach out to employees myself, sending a funny message or just something nice. Getting to know everyone and building genuine relationships makes the workplace overall more rewarding.
Contributors: Ameet Khabra from Hop Skip Media
We try to do quarterly outings where we take the company to dinner and an activity. For example, we have gone bowling at lucky strike and spent a day kayaking in San Diego. Also, we order lunch for the office during busy times to let them know we appreciate their effort. Sometimes, managers also often cook food or bring snacks for their teams.
We often let them leave early on Fridays too when possible.
Contributors: Randy Hayashi from Payment Depot
Here at Kudos we're a big believer in employee recognition - and for good reason. A huge proportion of employees out there feel like they don't get enough recognition, and we've seen first-hand the impact the recognition has on employee engagement. While many businesses focus on trying to incentivize employees with financial rewards, you'd be surprised at the impact simply introducing a formal recognition program can have. When you recognize good or desirable behaviors, employees naturally tend to repeat those behaviors - especially if you recognize them in a public or social manner. Recognition also has a longer effect than financial rewards and can be tied to organizational values to re-enforce them. The key things to keep in mind when starting out with recognition are:
- Be consistent. Send recognition frequently and encourage others to give recognition as well.
- Democratize your recognition program. Don't just rely on a top-down approach to recognition. The most successful recognition programs that businesses incorporate enable people from all areas of the business to give each other recognition.
- Make it visible and transparent. By making the recognition within your organization transparent, you amplify the impact of the recognition that your employees are sharing with each other.
Contributors: Garrett Genest from Kudos Inc
I find that time off awards are a great way to reward employees. You never truly understand another person’s financial situation, but sometimes, having extra time off is more important to people than monetary awards. At our company, you can choose between money and time off when you work overtime. You might be surprised how many people request time off over money. I would encourage any company to look into time off awards if they have not done so already. An alternative to time off, would be letting employees work from home using webinar platforms.
Contributors: Cornelius Charles from Dream Home Property Solutions, LLC
When we moved to our current building, I as the owner enjoyed a covered parking spot right next to the main entrance. Two years ago, I decided to make it the “Employee of the Month” parking spot. I designated the first winner but now, each occupant of this coveted spot selects the next person and make a pitch to me at the end of the month as to why that person should be the Employee of the Month.
The reason cannot be “because this person has not had it, yet”, it must be in support of outstanding work performance. Then, the new winner is presented on the first of the month at our morning meeting. This has been, by far, the most successful employee perk that does not cost the company a dime. Not only the winner gets to enjoy a covered, convenient – and proudly marked - spot for the whole month, we get to celebrate their successes with them and express gratitude for a job well done.
Contributors: Hana Laurenzo from Teneo Linguistics Company, LLC
Anyone will love to work from home than appearing in the office every day and work-from-home usually yields better outputs than produced in the office. If you allow any of your employees to work-from-home, then he or she will be more than delighted to be an employee of you and will be eager to produce some amazing results from home.
Contributors: Andrei Vasilescu from DontPayFull
You can provide your best employees with complimentary passes for several attractive events. If any of your employees has done an outstanding job for your business and he or she loves music, then getting a free pass for any concert or a popular singer’s performance will make that employee overwhelmed and greatly thankful to you at the same time.
Contributors: Andrei Vasilescu from DontPayFull
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