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We have come to understand that in order to attract and retain the best talent in the future of work, organizations must create a workplace where people want, not need, to show up to work. But in this effort to create great employee experience, we can sometimes get sidetracked with focusing solely on perks and benefits.

While perks and benefits can be very beneficial to employees, it can also be dangerous. There is a term in psychology known as the Hedonic Treadmill, also known as the Hedonic Adaptation. This is a tendency in humans that has been observed which shows that we quickly return to a relatively stable level of happiness despite major positive or negative events or life changes.

What does this mean for organizations implementing the latest and greatest perks and benefits at the drop of a hat? Well, it means we adapt to our surroundings quickly. So, let’s say your organization implements a new policy stating that there will be free food everyday and every Friday is bring your dog to work day. You may notice that on Day 1 of the new policy people are excited and engaged, they think their employer is the best.

But eventually these new perks will become old news, everyone will adapt and people will essentially become numb to the perk. Which means the organization has to come up with new and better perks to top the last few to get engagement back up. And on and on it goes.

The truth is, perks are a nice tactic, but they are not a strategy.

Let me know what you think, comment below to share your thoughts! You can subscribe to the YouTube channel for more videos.

My new book, The Employee Experience Advantage (Wiley) analyzes over 250 global organizations to understand how to create a place where people genuinely want to show up to work. Get my free training series to create powerful Employee Experiences, future proof your career and life, or become a member of the new Facebook Community The Future If… and join the discussion.

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