What’s It Gonna Take to Keep You Happy at Work?!

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As a company leader with experience in the staffing industry for over 40 years, part of my responsibility is negotiating offers of employment.

Over the years, there have been changes in what potential employees value from their future employers. The obvious basics of salary and benefits will always remain key, yet the trends of “perks” come and go with generational shifts and as the world changes. Now, we are seeing the end of an era and the beginning of a new trend in perks.

In recent years, the perks companies offered to their employees might include free food, open workspaces, casual dress codes, foosball tables, and comfortable lounge areas. But these trends are on the way out; no longer enticing or meaningful to employees today. Let’s take a look at how this is shifting.

Employees today are searching for a deeper meaning within their companies, looking to make a worthwhile contribution to find their sense of purpose. Some of the perks we’re seeing make an appearance now include:

  • Training and development programs, and opportunities for growth
  • Career path trajectory; a roadmap for employees to prepare for future opportunities
  • Some flexibility with work hours and working from home, when necessary
  • Company responsibility and sustainability, giving employees a sense of contribution to a greater purpose

Companies are beginning to catch on. In a recent study of 1,220 employers by Bersin, Deloitte Consulting LLP., the most profitable companies are cultivating current workers for future opportunities, are five times more likely to develop and promote insiders, and are three times as likely to retain top talent than lower-performing companies. In addition, these companies posted 30% higher profit per employee (The Wall Street Journal).

What’s the takeaway? Invest in your employees if you want to stay successful! The importance of training, developing, and maintaining a culture of development and growth can’t be overstated in today’s market. Trends will come and go, but it’s important to focus on the NOW. Engage, encourage, and mentor your employees so that they aren’t whisked away by a company that will!


Shellenbarger, Sue. “Why Perks No Longer Cut It for Workers.” The Wall Street Journal, 2018.