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My latest thoughts on all things Culture & HR



Anthony Vaughan from Baltimore, MaryLand. Director of Employee experience @Fit2go Personal training. A serial entrepreneur and start up consultant, is an avid speaker and podcast host. Anthony has a keen interest with helping brands and organizations in implementing thoughtful HR.

“As a nonprofit, we did it on a shoestring budget. Find out what your workers want and build programs around those things. Offer a hybrid of rewards. We trade zoo tickets for goods and services from local businesses. We’ve negotiated great deals on fitness, electronics, daycare, and pet care. Find rewards and programs that resonate, and do what you can within your resources”

I love this …. too many startups and small organizations make excuses that they don’t have the budget to invest into culture …. they say they don’t have the budget to provide high-level perks and amenities for there staff; here is a perfect example of how brands can make it work. From where I sit there are so many benefits to giving a tribe member what he or she wants out of life overall, especially when it’s correlated to there interests. Whether its the zoo, sneaker culture, film, sports; whatever it is .. when a company shows an employee they really care and most of all that they are truly paying attention great things can happen. I know for me when I paid for my trainer to attend the latest Marvel movie, he wasn’t impressed by the $19 bucks I spent he was impressed by the fact that I paid attention to his Batman and Robin shirts, or how I paid attention to his background on all of his social. Its the fact that I am attempting to respect, care and accept him for who he is, thus when its time for rewards … it won’t be a bull shit company shirt or water bottle it will be a gift that means something to him.. a gift he won’t forget. 

“Compare the organization to what we explained it would be like when you initially interviewed with us. Have you experienced any surprises, disappointments or other “aha” moments?”

For me, this is such an important question that many organizations and leaders never ask. Think about it, when a new employee decides to work for your brand your team paints this grand and elaborate picture of the experience. The benefits they will receive, how supportive and nice their co-workers will be… you make things seem like they made the best decision in the world by working for your brand. I compare it to the first 6 months of an intimate relationship… you know that honeymoon phase. Now in many cases, after the honeymoon phase is over there’s a bit of bickering that begins, their true personality comes to the surface. Your employees may be experiences something similar to this.. there direct boss/leader might be expecting too much too quickly, the co-worker they met on the first day that helped them get adjusted is now a bit sharp each time the new hire asks for help; these are experiences that for sure some of your new and old employees are either going through or did go through. 

The key is to conduct your follow up, 2 weeks, 4 weeks and 2 months from the time they start working for your company. Checking on these small variables can make all the difference. Check on their overall happiness, check to see that they are well adjusted, check to make sure the position is everything they want and more importantly everything you painted for them. Bottom line, as a leader, check to make sure your new hire is being treated well and being taken care of. This tiny yet important action can increase retention and the overall perception an employee has of your brand.

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