Jason Kulpa details the eight factors employees care about most
What employees want and expect from work has changed over the years. To run a successful company, business leaders must understand what is important to their staff. Each new generation of workers seems to have different ideas about the workplace. While it can be a challenge for managers to address this dynamic set of expectations, at the core, today’s workforce has a lot in common with workers of previous eras. In this article, Jason Kulpa, Founder & former CEO of UE.co, shares what he has learned about what employees need and want from their jobs. These eight factors are essential to nearly all employees.
Competitive pay – Employees will often choose to join a company based on an attractive salary. At that point, they haven’t had time to look under the hood or kick the tires, so they compare opportunities by pay. Pay is, however, rarely the thing they care the most about. Employees want to know they are getting paid a competitive amount but stay with a company for the reasons listed below.
Good benefits – In some ways, we all spend much of our time finding ways to avoid stress. Not knowing what will happen financially if you or your child gets sick is incredibly stressful. People will often lay awake at night thinking about the terrible things that could happen to upset their otherwise peaceful lives, including how their “golden years” will look. Good health and retirement benefits are excellent stress avoiders. Employees care about avoiding stress.
To be appreciated – Employees want to feel that someone notices their hard work and dedication to the company. Expressing appreciation is easy, inexpensive, and can produce massive benefits. Employees that feel appreciated will work harder, be more positive, and reflect their satisfaction in their interactions with customers, vendors, and other employees.
Respect – It is common to hear people say they would rather be respected than liked. Being liked and being respected are very closely related, but it’s true — given those two choices, most employees would rather be respected. To be respected means, they are admired for their strength of character. You might like a puppy, but you wouldn’t look up to one. Employees don’t want to be the company puppy. They want to be noticed for their capabilities.
Job security – Again, stress avoidance is vital to employees. The thought of losing their job can be debilitating to some employees. Their entire livelihood depends on being employed and finding a new job can be a long and painful process. Help employees feel secure in their jobs. They will find that difficult to give up.
Flexibility – The playful term “the daily grind” expresses a desire for more flexibility in controlling their lives. Flexible work practices that include working from home on occasion, setting their own schedules, and even shared workloads are all examples of flexible work plans that employees value.
Meaningful work – Employees want to feel that what they do daily makes a difference to someone. A barista wants to know that serving great coffee with a smile will set someone’s day on the right course. A physician needs to feel like they have improved their patient’s life. We all want to believe that what we do contributes to a better world.
Growth opportunities – Growing bored of the same thing over and over is a natural part of the human condition. Employees care about knowing that opportunities for new and exciting responsibilities will follow if they perform well at their current job.
About Jason Kulpa
Jason Kulpa is a serial entrepreneur and the Founder and CEO of UE.co, San Diego’s Fastest Growing Business multi-year award winner, and a Certified Great Place to Work multi-year winner. Mr. Kulpa is a San Diego’s two-time winner of the Most Admired CEO Award of the San Diego Business Journal and a semi-finalist for the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur award. Under Mr. Kulpa’s leadership, in 2018, his teams volunteered at over 24 events and worked side-by-side to improve the San Diego community. They hosted a gala dinner benefiting individuals with autism, cheered on Special Olympic athletes as they broke their records on the track, and brought school supplies and cold-weather gear to students impacted by homelessness. Jason’s mission is to bring awareness, support, and inclusion for special needs causes.
Story by Deny Smith