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Effective ways for employers to help employees accomplish their own most important goals.

As a leader, you are responsible for inspiring your employees to work towards the company’s goals. However, it is essential to recognize that employees will always prioritize their goals over the businesses. Furthermore, each employee’s personal goals will be different and diverse. While you may provide rewards for employees who help achieve the company’s goals, it is also effective for employers to help employees accomplish their own most important goals.

Adoption and Engagement is Very Important

Research shows that employees appreciate and respond positively to employers who support achieving their personal goals.

This is why employee lifestyle benefits are becoming increasingly popular and are often offered alongside long-standing benefits like health insurance and paid time off. In this article, we will discuss the appeal of lifestyle benefits and provide tips on determining which benefits will be most effective for your workforce.

What exactly are lifestyle benefits?

Lifestyle benefits are additional perks offered to employees beyond their salary or wages. These benefits support the employee’s life and goals outside of work. While salary and wages are the primary forms of compensation for work, lifestyle benefits are designed to enhance the overall well-being and satisfaction of the employee.

These benefits can vary greatly and may include gym memberships, financial planning assistance, or professional development opportunities. By offering lifestyle benefits, companies can show their employees that they value their overall well-being and are committed to supporting them in their pursuits.

There are a limited number of benefits that companies are required by law to offer their employees, such as Social Security and Medicaid, unemployment insurance, workers’ compensation insurance, and FMLA. In addition to these federally mandated benefits, most companies also offer a basic package of benefits to attract and retain employees.

These may include paid time off, medical insurance, and retirement options. Paid time off may include holidays, flexible vacation days, and sick leave, while medical insurance may include dental and vision coverage. Retirement options may include 401K plans with or without employer matching or pension plans. These benefits are not legally required but should be offered to remain competitive in the job market.

Employee perks, also known as fringe, ancillary, or voluntary, are additional benefits that an employer may choose to offer to their employees. These perks can fall into various categories, but many can overlap. Lifestyle benefits are a specific type of employee perk that stands out because they were made to support employees in achieving their personal goals.

These goals include improving physical and mental health, financial stability, family well-being, and personal growth and education. Any perk that helps employees progress towards these goals can be considered a lifestyle benefit. Examples of lifestyle benefits include gym memberships, financial planning assistance, and professional development opportunities.

Why would a company invest in benefits?

There are several reasons why offering lifestyle benefits can benefit the employer and the employee. First and foremost, offering lifestyle benefits is a way to show empathy and support for employees, who often spend a significant portion of their time at work. In 2022, a survey found that 80% of employers believed that one of the main reasons to offer benefits was to meet the diverse needs of their employees at all stages of life.

By providing lifestyle benefits, employers demonstrate that they care about the overall well-being of their employees, which can lead to increased satisfaction and loyalty among the workforce.

When employees are experiencing stress or difficulties related to their personal lives, it can be more challenging for them to focus on work. By offering benefits that address these issues, employers can help employees manage their stress and feel more fulfilled outside of work, leading to improved focus and productivity in the workplace.

Additionally, supporting employees in achieving their personal goals can positively impact their performance at work.

It is in companies’ best interest to support their employees in their pursuits, as holistically healthy employees are much more likely to be satisfied with their jobs, more productive, and more likely to remain with the company for extended periods. Providing lifestyle benefits can help employees manage stress and other personal challenges, improving their focus and productivity at work.

Additionally, offering desirable lifestyle benefits can make a company more attractive to job candidates and help retain current employees. These benefits are relatively inexpensive compared to pay raises but can have a significant emotional impact on employees. Therefore, offering lifestyle benefits can be cost-effective to support and retain a happy and productive workforce.

These forms of lifestyle benefits work, and here is why

Lifestyle benefits are an effective way for companies to improve employee satisfaction, attract top talent, increase engagement, and retain employees. Many employees place a high value on the benefits they receive from their jobs and consider them an essential factor in their overall job satisfaction. 80% of employees prefer more benefits over a pay raise, and 92% believe benefits are critical to job satisfaction.

Many companies have also found that offering lifestyle benefits can directly improve engagement and productivity, even in a remote work environment. Overall, lifestyle benefits are a valuable tool for companies to support and retain a happy and productive workforce.

Lifestyle benefits are becoming more common among businesses of all sizes, and data about which benefits are widespread among different demographic groups are being shared. However, the employees are the best source of information for designing a company’s lifestyle benefits. One reason lifestyle benefits are practical is that they can be personalized to the specific needs and preferences of a company’s employees.

By asking employees what benefits they would find most valuable, a company can create a customized package of benefits that meets the needs of their workforce. This customization is significant for health and wellness benefits, as people have different definitions of health and want to support it in meaningful ways. Allowing employees to choose the most relevant benefits can make them feel seen and appreciated and demonstrate that the company values their overall well-being.

Another advantage of lifestyle benefits is that they can be easily adjusted to address changing economic stressors. While providing pay raises may seem like a straightforward solution to financial challenges, it is only sometimes sustainable for employers. It may have a different emotional impact than directly addressing specific issues that employees are facing.

Lifestyle benefits that address socio-economic factors, such as the rising cost of healthcare or the caregiver crisis, can be adjusted as needed to support employees during different challenges. Additionally, individual employees can customize their benefits to suit their changing needs. This flexibility makes lifestyle benefits a valuable tool for addressing a workforce’s diverse and evolving needs.

Lifestyle benefits can be more inclusive than traditional benefits because they are customizable to the needs of individual employees. Some benefits, like health insurance or 401K matching programs, may not be accessible to part-time employees or freelancers or may not be relevant to employees at certain stages of their lives.

By offering a range of lifestyle benefits that employees can choose from, a company can allow each employee to design a benefits package that meets their specific needs and circumstances. This can help ensure that all employees feel valued and supported, regardless of their role or life stage.

Lifestyle benefits are meant to be used and positively enjoyed by employees, which can help improve workplace happiness and productivity. Unlike traditional gifts, which are often only used in times of need, lifestyle benefits can be used and enjoyed regularly. Each time an employee uses a lifestyle benefit, it is an opportunity for the employer to engage with the employee and support their work-life balance positively.

This balance can lead to increased happiness and satisfaction among employees, which can, in turn, boost productivity. Research has shown that happy employees show 12% more productivity than their unhappy counterparts and that happiness at work is closely linked to joy at home. By supporting employees in achieving their personal goals, employers can create a positive cycle of happiness and productivity.

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