What employees care about most at work

Article from Jacob Morgen on Inc.com.
Employees want to work for an organization that is respected and where they can feel good about their contributions, but what does this actually look like?

Employee experience is all about providing employees with an environment where they want, not need to come to work–a place where they can feel energized and free to be themselves to get their best work done. But what does that actually look like? Based on interviews with hundreds of executives and leaders at companies around the world ranging from the Chairman of the Board at Yahoo to the CHRO of Marriott to the CEO of Jamba Juice for my new book, I put together a framework that allows companies to design great employee experiences. Employee experience may seem complicated, but it really boils down to three environments: technological, physical, and cultural.

Read the elaboration of these three aspects in the original article.

From there, there are 17 key things that employees care most about at work. These attributes fall under the three environments and can provide a more detailed framework for building the employee experience.

To design great employee experiences and to create a place where employees truly want to show up, organizations must focus on a Reason for Being (to be explored in another article) followed by 17 attributes that are abbreviated as ACE technology, COOL physical spaces, and a CELEBRATED culture.

ACE Technology

  • Available to everyone
  • Consumer grade technology (tools that are so beautiful, useful, and valuable that employees would consider using something similar in their personal lives if it existed).
  • Employee needs vs business requirements (tools that take into account how and why employees actually work).

COOL Physical Spaces

  • Chooses to bring in friends or visitors (a great way to tell if employees are proud of their physical space)
  • Offers flexibility
  • Organization’s values are reflected in the physical space
  • Leverages multiple workspace options (open, closed, modern cubicles, lounge areas, cafe environments, quiet areas, etc).


  • Company is viewed positively (by employees and the public)
  • Everyone feels valued
  • Legitimate sense of purpose
  • Employees feel like they’re part of a team
  • Believes in diversity and inclusion
  • Referrals come from employees
  • Ability to learn new things and given resources to do so and advance
  • Treats employees fairly
  • Executives and managers are coaches and mentors
  • Dedicated to employee health and wellness

What I found especially fascinating is that every one of these 17 attributes positively affects the employees and the organization as a whole. This isn’t one sided, so even by investing in the overall success of the company, the employee experience is also hugely affected positively. Everyone wins.


Read the whole article (with more graphics) here.


About Gea Peper (16 Articles)
Ik ben oprichter en eigenaar van het HappinessBureau en help organisaties (nog) succesvoller te worden door het geluk van werknemers te vergroten. Het HappinessBureau doet dit door middel van het geven van advies, training, coaching, het doen van onderzoek en het publiceren van artikelen en het organiseren van events (zie www.happypeoplebetterbusiness.nl).

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