Posted by Sandy Yu on 3.21.2019
It’s always budget season in the corporate world. No matter what quarter, leaders must constantly focus on identifying what’s necessary and where they can make cuts to save funds.Unfortunately, employee experience and communication efforts are often first to be cut. It’s sometimes challenging to prove to execs that some measures meant to enhance your team’s experiences are necessary. And as new trends point to more eccentric and fun employee experiences, this task will become even more challenging.
To help you manage the balance between corporate funds and employee fun, we reached out to three leadership experts. Here’s what they had to say:
Some people feel a communications team is a waste of resources when a company’s money can be spent on other departments and hiring more employees. However, it’s crucial for the higher-ups to get messages across to the general staff in a nice and timely fashion, and it’s sometimes tricky to do this and keep the office dynamic friendly and fun.
One way to do this is to tune in with how people prefer to communicate. Especially nowadays, people like quick messages and real-time talk, so communicating information on behalf of company executives to the rest of the staff is best done through concise updates.
As the business plans team-building activities, internal communicators should play an active role in organizing an activity that sets the right tone for the day based on what the bosses want for the team.
An internal communicator should be front and center while HR plans the event, communicating the C-suite’s values and priorities in what they want to accomplish. Yet, as communication experts, they must know how to express this idea in a way that will be received nicely, namely, an activity through which workers can bond, learn, and simply have a good time.
To keep things fresh and fun for employees, my business partner and I offer a few different perks. First, we keep the office stocked with beverages and snacks for employees to enjoy at their convenience. We also try to maintain a fun office with various of employee activities. This includes a ping pong and foosball table, mini basketball hoop, T.V., bean bag toss, and more. This helps employees enjoy their breaks and feel rejuvenated when they sit back down at their desks.
Lastly, we give employees a lot of flexibility in terms of their schedule and where they get their work done. We don’t have set times employees need to be in the office and we occasionally allow them to work from home or a local coffee shop for a change of scenery.
As the company owner, I want to see profits grow, of course. This can sometimes mean cutting back on expenses. But I do understand that keeping employees happy is key to running a productive and efficient operation.
With that said, I tend to err on the side of keeping employees satisfied. I view them as the lifeblood of my business. If it takes a few extra dollars or more relaxed policies to keep them operating at full tilt, so be it.
As the service sector and creative industries expand, and older industries decline, a company’s people and how they behave are more and more important. You can call it ‘human capital,’ but as a company leader, I believe ensuring employees are having fun at work, at least some of the time, is vital. When people get along with their co-workers, they are much less likely to leave, they’re more creative, and more likely to recommend you to their friends as an employer.
Just the savings in recruitment costs alone more than pays for the small investment in the employee experience.
The additional huge bonus is the increase in customer satisfaction. When they deal with staff that has a positive employee experience, and aren’t disinterested and looking for another job, they’ll notice it in their own experiences.
It’s this output that makes it easy to justify spending on staff communication and activities to executives. If they see it as an investment, rather than a frivolous and wasteful component, they’ll be less likely to make it the first item that gets cut when trimming costs.
Seeing it as an investment instead of an expense is the key here. Expenses are the first things to get cut. Investments aren’t.
Any investment in your corporate culture is a good investment.