Millennials are loving the energetic and communal environment that start-up companies are bringing to the table. With the in-office games, beer on tap, and modern workspaces, start-ups are leading the way for a new standard in office culture. However, there’s no need to choose employment at a start-up company versus a corporate company based solely off of the work environment, as there are many perks and office features that corporations can integrate into their culture to create a start-up-like environment for their team. A few of these include:
Flexible Work Hours
Strict 9-5 schedule? That is tough to commit to for the millennial professional who prefers fluidity in their life. Many start-up offices are beginning to offer a more flexible work schedule. While employees are expected to be available and active during the standard nine to five window, it is becoming more acceptable for employees to take a midday break for a work out class - or shift their workday schedules to accommodate school pick up times. This flexibility gives employees more power over how their time is spent and creates an environment that prioritizes work-life balance, making employees feel valued and respected.
Fostering Employees to Make a Difference
With millennials now in the workforce, there is a shift towards employees’ desire to participate in work that they feel passionate about. Having a connection to the work they are doing results in high-quality outcomes due to their ties to the company mission and playing a meaningful role in the company. Many companies are creating a workplace where employees feel valued and comfortable voicing their opinions and ideas with peers, managers, and senior leadership and strongly consider these ideas as possible ‘difference-makers’ for the company. Which leads to our next point...
Create an Open Dialogue for Employee Feedback
Part of a good office culture includes creating an environment that fosters trust and enables success within the role. In addition to creating a culture in which your employees feel they can make a difference, good office culture should provide an environment in which employees feel comfortable providing feedback and ideas. This may require managers to schedule regular one-on-ones with employees to get their feedback, have larger team brainstorming sessions, and host regular company-wide meetings to answer recurring questions or address challenges.
A Comfortable Office Space Goes A Long Way
This goes beyond the ping-pong table! Creating a comfortable work environment can go a long way and can help employees improve focus, feel comfortable at their desk, and create a more inclusive and communicative environment amongst co-workers. Offering amenities like standing desks, private call rooms, games, and a living room-like meeting space helps to round out the experience without taking too much focus away from work.
What’s Cookin’ in the Kitchen?
Employees spend a lot of time at work, so they appreciate it when they're able to take advantage of perks like free breakfast, snacks, or a weekly catered lunch. Many offices aren’t stopping there! Some popular perks include offering beer, kombucha, and nitro cold brew coffee on tap for employees to enjoy. Employees tend to congregate in the kitchen for meetings, lunch, and event just a quick catch up, so having snacks and drinks on deck in the kitchen is a great way to encourage employees to have conversations and continue spending time together. Another way to put the kitchen and common area to good use is to organize office happy hours, which creates a fun and team-oriented experience too!
We know some of these perks can add up quickly, but there are creative ways to save money while still adding some exciting office enhancements. For example:
- Rather than providing a standing desk to every employee, add two or three to your office. This way, people can take their laptop to the standing desk to work for an hour here and there.
- Host your own office happy hour by creating some easy mixed drinks and setting up in-office karaoke to keep everyone entertained and having fun.
- Add a Kegerator Vending Machine (KVM) to your kitchen! KVMs provide employees with the craft beverages they want on-tap without having to leave the office to go to the coffee shop. Best of all, the cost of the beverages is at little or no cost to the employer. For more information, visit kegvending.com.
Try adding some of these perks to your office space this summer or gather feedback from your team on what additional features they would like to see in the office. If you have any other office perk ideas, drop a comment below! We’d love to learn more about what others are doing to keep their employees happy.