The easiest way to keep your employees happy

All they want is to be treated like people. When you put in a little extra to make them feel special, they’ll never say goodbye.


Let’s make one thing clear here: You don’t want to be that company.

You know, the one with a ridiculously high turnover rate and a bad reputation among former employees. Sooner or later, that kind of reputation will ensure you won’t attract the best employees to your company, no matter how much you promise to pay them.

That can’t be good for your customers, can it? And once your customers are unhappy with you, it’s hard to salvage your brand.

All in all, it’s much easier if you just make employee satisfaction an essential part of your business practice. It won’t be a straightforward process, especially if you run a firm that relies heavily on creativity and diversity. But the effort can give you positive returns you never thought possible.

How do you make sure you satisfy employees? Here are a couple things modern workers expect from their companies:

Get the basics right

You may not think this is the case, but there are many companies out there who still get the basics of employee satisfaction wrong. More often than not, they focus on improving operations by investing in technology like advanced business phone systems and company smartphones rather than engage the people who actually help the business operate.

These businesses often lose their best workers to more employee-centered competitors. To avoid becoming one of them, you need to:

  • Pay the right salary. If you pay employees far too little, they’ll feel undervalued and eventually get the urge to leave. If you pay them too much, they’ll feel like they owe you more work than they do, and will be likely to quit from the stress. When you hire, try to strike the right balance.
  • Give employees a reason to work for you. If you think paying people is enough to make them care about the work they do for you, you have a problem. Most people need a higher purpose to dedicate themselves to something. Give them that purpose with great company values.
  • Provide people with opportunities. If you turn your employees’ positions into dead-end jobs, you’ll never be able to keep them. At the very least, people want a chance at a promotion or a way to improve themselves. With these in place, your workers will feel more motivated.

Do something extra

Get the basics right, and you’ll be able to ensure your employees are OK. But to make them ridiculously happy, give them something extra—something that proves the company cares about them as people.

If you want to show your employees how much you really appreciate them, follow these two examples:

  • The doctor is in at SAS. The software company has an actual doctor’s office on-site so the health of employees and their families can be dealt with quickly and efficiently.
  • FreeTextbooks.com offers personalized rewards. The net-based bookstore for college students gives staff members personalized perks, like IMAX tickets or restaurant gift certificates, when they perform well.

You can be really creative with your personnel perks; they don’t need to be that expensive. What you do need to do is genuinely care about the people who work for you.

Nancy Perkins writes about business, technology, health, fashion and lifestyle. A version of this article originally appeared on Business2Community.com.

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