Rachel Beider on Small Business Trends

"Keeping employees happy and healthy is good for business: You get more tasks completed (and with more creativity) if the people doing the work aren’t ill or tired. Some people love having a company-funded chance for personal development, while others prefer the options for flexible hours or 401(k)s. To narrow down what job perks resonate the strongest, we asked members of the Young Entrepreneur Council:

“What company perk (bus pass, outside learning opportunities, etc.) do your employees find most helpful/useful and why?”

Best Employee Perks

Here’s what they have to say:

1. Continuing Education

“I will happily pay for my employees to develop new skills on their own time and bill me for the hours if it’s something they can bring to their role at the business. If you like to hire self-starters in the first place, you want to keep them at the top of their game by encouraging them to learn as much as they can.” ~ Adam SteeleThe Magistrate

2. Working Remotely With Flexible Hours

“Empowering our employees with the ability to manage their own schedule and work remotely has been a huge advantage for us. By allowing them to self-manage, they feel more invested in getting the work done as efficiently as possible, something we weren’t achieving by making sure they were in their chairs by 9 a.m. For us, it’s about the work getting done on time, not about where or when it’s completed.” ~ Kim KaupeZinePak

3. Team-Led Exercise

“Most teams seem to have a yoga enthusiast, a couple of runners, a cycling guy, couple ballers, and so on. We’ve had a ton of fun as a team allowing different employees to “lead” workouts during, or right before or after work. Not only does it empower the teacher and allow them to show off their passion, but it promotes a healthy work environment and usually involves a few laughs after the fact.” ~ Matt MurphyKids in the Game LLC

4. Personal Development

“We are planning on bringing our leadership team of 12 to the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland three times this year for intense personal development. In addition to learning new communication tools for their roles at work, they are working on marriage issues, identity issues, parenting issues and more. Supporting our staff in their lives impacts their work, while deepening loyalty to the company and one other.” ~ Corey BlakeRound Table Companies

5. Access to Entertainment

“Our company sits at the intersection of entertainment, technology, and the ultimate fan experience, so we stay at the forefront of new trends. Our employees get to try all the latest gadgets (such as Snapchat Spectacles and hover boards), go to the hottest shows, and enjoy exclusive experiences as part of their job. This ultimately helps them stay in touch with trends and excel at their position.” ~ Justin LefkovitchMirrored Media

6. Free Monthly Massages

“My front desk staff love getting the perk of free monthly massages at my massage studio. Sitting at a desk can take its physical toll, and regular massage therapy can make a huge difference in lowering blood pressure, alleviating headaches, reducing stress and tension, and decreasing anxiety. By providing them with regular massage therapy, they feel valued, and are happier and more productive.” ~ Rachel BeiderMassage Greenpoint

7. Health and Wellness

“My team takes advantage of a health and wellness perk that subsidizes things like gym memberships. Obvious benefits include a healthier, happier and consequently more productive work environment. Providing ample space and resources for employees to take great care of themselves is also a good way to illustrate the extent to which the company values them beyond their ability to drive revenue.” ~ Ryan WilsonFiveFifty

8. Annual Trip

“We do an annual, three-day trip that acts as several different things. It is a reward for another great year of work; an amazing team-building experience, as our entire team gets out of the office to hang together; exposure to something new, as we always pick a new place; and a recruiting tool. The trip has consistently proven to be one of the most valuable things that we do.” ~ Erik HubermanHawke Media

9. 401(k)

“I’m biased, but we hear over and over from employees at all types of companies that a tax-advantaged way to save for retirement is a valuable perk that gets both the employer and the employee a lot of “bang for your buck.” It also shows a strong sense of thoughtfulness and fiscal responsibility in a way that a bonus or a ping pong table does not.” ~ Roger LeeCaptain401
Bus Pass Photo via Shutterstock"

 

As seen in Small Business Trends