What makes a great company? Many factors go into the consistent growth and success of a company. Everything from the way an organization is structured to a well-designed workflow to its growth strategy plays an integral part in its ability to thrive. But ultimately, none of this is possible without the people behind it.
Dedicated, engaged and highly-invested employees are arguably the most valuable asset to a company. Additionally, the longer an employee stays at an organization, the more valuable they become to the growth and success of the company. So how do employers today make sure that they’re not only finding the best candidates but keeping them satisfied and supported in the long term?
Here are 5 ways employers in 2022 can invest in their employees to increase retention, employee satisfaction, and ultimately, revenue.
- Offering opportunities for professional development
- Supporting employee’s individual passions and interests
- Supporting personal health and wellness
- Creating opportunities for connection and team building
- Consistent and supportive communication
Offering opportunities for professional development
Investing in the development of your employees’ skills and education has a high likelihood of resulting in a fruitful return. One study shows that employers who offer their employees support and opportunities for professional development saw a 15% increase in employee engagement and a 34% increase in retention rates. In some cases, paying for employees to take classes or go to school can be a tax write-off for the employer.
There are many ways an employer can support the professional development of employees. One example is offering an allowance or stipend for each employee to pay for a course, conference, educational materials, etc. Another example could be encouraging employees to join online communities or groups dedicated to developing a certain skill or discussing a specific topic (e.i. a Slack workspace dedicated to discussing marketing strategies, knowledge and trends).
Supporting employee’s individual passions and interests
Encouraging and supporting employees’ passions outside of work shows employees that you genuinely value them, their individual interests and what they feel is best for them. This can be rare to find and an employee who feels this level of support will likely want to stick around for the long haul. Helping employees develop a work-life balance would also be highly beneficial in developing an organization’s employer brand.
Employers have a variety of methods they can use to show employees that they support their personal interests, hobbies and passions. A great example of a company that does this well is Squarespace. In addition to an array of generous and nuanced perks and benefits, Squarespace gives employees “two free lifetime Squarespace sites to pursue their creative passions and side hustles”.
Another great way for an employer to support their employees’ passions and hobbies outside the company is to host monthly lunch-and-learns where employees can volunteer to talk about a topic they’re passionate about. This can serve a lot of additional purposes and benefits such as team building and skill development for the employee. It can also help you and the rest of the team learn more about one another, what motivates each individual, what
Supporting personal health and wellness
There’s an abundance of studies that prove that investing in the health and overall wellness of your employees can reap some major benefits, both personally and monetarily. The top three reasons employers choose to offer health and wellness benefits and incentives are to increase employee retention, satisfaction and productivity.
If you’re looking for some great ideas for investing in your employee’s health and wellness, a great company to look into is Asana. Asana offers some of the most unique, nuanced, and effective health and wellness benefits to its employees all over the world. Some of Asana’s health and wellness benefits and perks include generous paid parental leave and transition assistance/support for new parents, freshly cooked healthy meals in the office and nap rooms. Yes, Asana literally pays its employees to sleep on the job.
Additional ways an employer can support the personal health and well-being of their employees is by offering reimbursements for fitness classes, gym memberships, healthy meal subscription plans, etc. Some companies even offer incentives for employees to do healthy activities and make healthy choices.If you want to get even more creative, organizing some type of sports league or team activity outside the workplace can encourage employees to be healthier and happier by bonding with their coworkers.
Creating opportunities for connection and team building
Thoughtfully curating opportunities in and outside of the office for employees to have casual conversations and get to know each other better can be extremely beneficial to creating a cohesive and high-functioning team.
If you’re looking to create some opportunities for connection in the office by using team-building activities, consider implementing weekly team lunches. Some employees may be hesitant to initiate casual conversations with coworkers and even more so if there’s never a “right time” to do so. Team lunches are a great way to provide the appropriate atmosphere for employees to connect and learn more about one another in a casual and relaxed setting.
If you’re thinking about creating opportunities for connection outside of the workplace, consider implementing some kind of quarterly event or fun activity as a team, consider what the individuals in your organization like to do in their spare time. For example, some companies host quarterly team outings like going to a baseball game, renting a boat, or doing healthy activities like rock-climbing or cooking classes together!
Consistent and supportive communication
In order for an employee to stay motivated, many of us need some sort of positive reinforcement or assurance that we’re good at what we do and our hard work is appreciated. Facilitating monthly check-ins with a manager can create a great opportunity for the employee to voice any concerns, ask questions about their performance or give feedback about what they think is working well and what’s not.
Vice versa, it provides a great opportunity for the manager to give the employee constructive feedback, make sure the employee feels properly supported, and let them know when they’ve done a good job. These conversations play such an important role in making sure things are running smoothly, in the direction they’re supposed to, as well as making the employee feel valued and respected.
The best place an employer can invest their time and money is right back into their people. Showing appreciation (both verbally and monetarily) providing support for personal growth and wellbeing are all integral parts of the success of your business. The more employees feel highly supported, appreciated, and valued, the more dedicated, engaged, and invested they’ll be in the success of the company as a whole.