(2 minute read)

At ‘Patagonia’ Outdoor Clothing and Gear, they have implemented a policy where employees can leave anytime there is a perfect surf – even during office hours! For the avid surfer, this is one tantalising teaser, and right up there with the top perks of select workplaces.

In addition to the ongoing quest to attract and retain talent, companies of all sizes have incorporated reward strategies, employee recognition programs, and now perks into their organisational culture.

While the office table-tennis table – conveniently positioned next to the office beer fridge – continues to create more conversation than the old water cooler, there are other ideas that small-to-medium businesses are adopting to help their people feel a sense of belonging and provide a corporate point-of-difference.

In contrast to the scheduled pub night, some companies have started their own ‘Run Club’. Melbourne-based ‘Who Gives A Crap’ gave their staff an extra week of holiday leave, ensuring they really can de-compress after achieving some great results throughout the year. Meanwhile, Australian underwear company ‘Modibody’, has raised the bar by offering extended health leave if required for purposes of select concerns, including menstruation and menopause.

Many smaller companies have followed the lead of tech giant, Google, who enthusiastically support charitable work of their employees (for every 5-hours of volunteered time, Google will donate $50 to the same not-for-profit organisation).

Managers, leaders, and support staff are often looking for new – and sometimes novel – ways to keep their staff engaged, enthused, and embraced. The inclusion of these perks can be just the point-of-difference (a.k.a. sweetener) your team members are looking for.

Tips and considerations

  • Seek input, ideas, and feedback from your team
  • Keep evolving your perks – move with the times & needs
  • Ensure any initiative aligns with your organisational culture
  • Promote any initiatives to your people – don’t hide them
  • Encourage buy-in and involvement
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