April 23, 2019
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Google headquarters has the market cornered on creating an office culture everyone wants to be a part of. Not only do they offer their employees amazing benefits such as paid paternity and maternity leave, they also offer perks that no one else has. For example, their building houses several restaurants, cafes, and snack bars where employees can eat for free. And their offices also have gyms, massage therapists, onsite health care, game spaces, barbershops, and nap pods. But you don’t have to compete with Google to create a company culture that people love. It’s just important to create one that you and your employees are comfortable with. Sometimes even a few minor adjustments can make a huge difference.

Provide a clean and comfortable break area

Your staff should feel as if they are allowed to relax a little during their breaks. Ditch those old hard plastic chairs for some stylish new ones. They don’t have to recline, but at least try them out to see if you’d mind sitting in them for more than a few minutes. And make it as aesthetically pleasing as you can. Hire a designer to incorporate some modern style throughout your entire office. It also doesn’t hurt to have some entertainment in the break room, such as a TV or even a deck of cards. Many employers believe that if they make the break room too enticing, the employees will spend too much time there. And granted, that may be the case for some of the workers who are slacking too much already. But studies show that workers who are chained to their desk all day are more prone to chronic stress and job burnout.

Give them free food

Providing meals onsite means less time away from the office, and it boosts employee morale. But even if you can’t afford to provide everyone’s meals, you can at least provide mid-morning snacks and coffee. But don’t settle for generic coffee brewed in your old commercial coffeepot. Show your staff how much you value them by providing gourmet coffee and a variety of condiments. You can even subscribe to a coffee club where fresh and different blends come to you every month. Instead of checking their Starbucks gift card balance, they’ll be glad to visit the break room for their afternoon pick-me-up.

Keep the meetings short

As much as possible, keep your meetings brief and to the point. Offer different platforms for training, such as online sessions or retreats. For instance, when you have to train your staff on diversity or harassment, choose a service such as Training ABC, where they can watch videos on their time. Or show the videos to everyone at once if you must, but be sure to provide popcorn and soft drinks to make the gathering a little better.

Let them pick their hours

Flexible hours is the perk employees want most, which means it will likely help them feel more engaged, well-rested and productive. It may not be possible for every office to offer this. Some offices are based on offering their services from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., making it impossible for someone to get in the required time outside these hours. But if it’s at all possible, put the time clocks in their hands. Most businesses that offer flex scheduling still require their employees to put in a certain number of hours. But the time of day they do their work is up to them to an extent. They may also allow employees to build up time off. In other words, if they work overtime, they could use that time as comp time for a later date. For employees who regularly get their work done, you can build loyalty with them by giving them a little more control and trusting them to do their jobs.