Google Offices, Soho London

Google Offices, Soho London

Google offers free restaurants, Twitter has beer on tap, and Yahoo provides discounts to ski resorts and theme parks. Are creative employee perks the key to keeping morale high?

Last month, Google announced plans for new London HQ. Be prepared to get office envy.

Floor plans for the building show a ‘wellness centre’ containing gyms, massage rooms, a narrow swimming pool and multi-use indoor sports pitch, and a rooftop garden split over multiple storeys and themed around three areas: a ‘plateau’, ‘gardens’ and ‘fields’, planted with strawberries, gooseberries and sage.

A 200-metre-long ‘trim trail’ runs through the roof, while peckish employees can grab food in one of four cafes, including a main one, which spans three stories with a ‘promenade’ and views of Kings Cross station.

But are creative perks really the way to keep staff morale high?

Low morale can lead to poor cooperation, low productivity and can affect your bottom line – and ultimately hinder a business from reaching its goals.

Since employee morale can quickly make or break a company’s success, senior staff would do well to keep a close eye on it.

Unfortunately, many managers aren’t in the position to splash out on Olympic-sized swimming pools and rooftop running tracks, so what are some achievable ways you can keep your staff engaged and motivated?

We asked Justin Thomas, Managing Director of Bon Bon Buddies, Europe’s premier provider of character and branded confectionary, whether he thinks employee perks and benefits are good incentives:

“Yes and no. It depends on the culture of your business and knowing what motivates or incentivises your team. Everyone is different and what floats one person’s boat won’t float another’s.

“We believe in paying a fair wage for the role and benchmark openly with our staff. We are transparent that we won’t be the highest or lowest paying employer. What we can then offer is a unique environment that marks us as different, and one where people enjoy coming to work knowing they are paid fairly.

“I personally get a sense of pride when I see employees grow and develop. I also believe in recognising and encouraging achievement by celebrating the small and larger wins. For that reason, we offer family days out and prizes for the winners of innovative teams, and frequently give out a bottle of champagne for a job well done!”

Justin developed his leadership style through a number of interventions including our ILM Level 7 Coaching & Mentoring qualification, and a bespoke in-house leadership programme. Though you may not have the budget to offer Google-style benefits, our programmes will teach you how to create a high performing, fun business environment without flashy perks.

How do you keep staff morale high? Tweet us @USWCommercial.

Check out our ILM Level 7 in Leadership & Management Executive programme.