Unique ways top companies help their employees manage stress

Money. Moola. Cash-ola. Whatever you want to call it, we all like to be compensated generously and fairly for the work we do.

As nice as a big salary may be though, it’s not the only part of a person’s job that keeps them passionate and motivated to go into work and give a hundred percent every day. There are other ways employers can motivate their teams besides a giant raise.

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In fact, when asked what makes them stay at a job, employees said 1) enjoying the work 2) having a job that fits other areas of life, and 3) benefits were all more important factors than pay. And as for Millennials, they crave purpose more than a paycheck.

Having said that, all of this reasoning goes out the window if an employee gets overstressed – employees in demanding jobs may suffer from stress levels so high that it can burn even the most committed person out after awhile. Top companies have realized this and are offering their employees a variety of unconventional ways to be and stay happy and ultimately avoid getting too stressed out with their jobs.

Here are some unique ways some companies are helping their employees manage stress, some of which might be familiar to you.

Mental well-being offerings

Situations can occur at work that affects an employee’s health negatively. From temporary issues like lack of sleep and irritation to deeper problems like high blood pressure and headaches, a heavy workload can be hard on a person’s health. Many companies are seeing and responding to this. For example, Airbnb provides free yoga classes for their employees. Apple allows 30 minutes a day for employees to meditate. Nike offers access to relaxation rooms.

Fun in-office activities

Many people enjoy their jobs, but it could still stress them out. When they toil many hours at work, it can be a big stress-buster to get away from their desks and do something fun for a few minutes. Online storage giant Dropbox provides ping pong tables, the Google offices sport a bowling alley and a basketball court, and Chesapeake Energy has an indoor rock-climbing wall. And among the thousands of companies reviewed on Kununu, 27% offer employee events as a perk. These all offer an employee a quick, easy way to get a bit of exercise and decrease their stress.

Comprehensive canine inclusion

Sometimes help with stress has four legs. Dog moms and dads who are able to bring their pet to work with them report greater job satisfaction and lower stress. Companies who have an open-door dog policy are online retailers Amazon and Etsy, ice cream company Ben and Jerry’s, hotel and restaurant group Kimpton, and consumer goods giant Proctor and Gamble. And among all of the top rated companies on Kununu (companies an with overall star rating of 4 stars or higher), 9% of them are identified as pet-friendly. Not too shabby! Considering that this includes companies where allowing pets probably wouldn’t make sense – think factories, retails stores and the like.  In any case, the option of having pets as work, where it makes sense, is a great way to decrease employee stress with practically zero financial investment.

Days off to volunteer

It’s long been said the best way to feel better about your own life is to help the less fortunate. Under this premise, companies from a variety of industries let their employees volunteer, on them. Software giant Salesforce permits their employees a generous 56 hours a year to volunteer, along with a cash grant the employee can bestow on the charity of their choice. Medical tech company Stryker gives employees up to five days of paid volunteer time. This is a win-win endeavor, as the employee gets to donate their time to a charity of their choice, and reduce their work stress, while the employer gets a renewed employee that completes their work more productively.

“Make-life-easier” perks

Trying to handle errands and appointments while managing a heavy workload causes many employees stress, and some companies have stepped in to lighten the load. Google, once again paving the way in unique employee offerings, gives employees access to a concierge that handles tasks from dinner reservations to making hair appointments. Proctor and Gamble gives their employees a free ride to work. Mattel gives parents 16 hours of school-related time off so they can be present at the parent-teacher conferences and field trips without dipping into vacation time. Facebook has a healthcare facility on-site, so no driving to the walk-in clinic on a lunch hour for their employees. All of these help save employee time, decrease stress, and promote job satisfaction.

Companies are increasingly realizing that stress is a thief of productivity and putting creative measures in place to stamp it out. Smaller businesses, while maybe not adding a climbing wall, are predicted to take a lesson from these giants and implement some of these perks into their employees’ work life as well. Luckily, most of these are low cost and bring about a great deal of return in employee happiness and efficiency. The result is a more harmonious, high-functioning, happier workplace. Does your employer offer some perks you don’t want to miss anymore? Tell us more about it in your anonymous employer review at kununu.us!

This article first appeared on Kununu

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