The Energizer

Resilient Insights for Work & Life

Forget parties and perks! Employee Experience Needs More.

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer - Monday, April 23, 2018
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In a war for talent, employee experience has risen as THE critical issue for this year. But make no mistake. It is not:

  • great onboard and streamlined HR processes (although that is important);
  • eye-popping salaries (although a competitive wage is critical)
  • beer busts on Friday and bring-your-pet to work days (sounds fun and cozy but that is not it.)

Instead, employees come and employees stay for four critical reasons:

  • An opportunity to grow skills and interests and experience career progression in any direction. Remember, a career ladder is now gone. Rather, it is a career climbing wall based upon each individual.
  • Meaningful work that allows employees to feel important and adding to the good of fellow employees and society.
  • Growing on the job without losing at home.
  • A management team that shows respect and consideration for all.


Actually, truth be told, I put in the fourth criteria. Sadly, we have an example of how to scare potential talent away and how not to treat people with the turmoil at the White House. I would be derelict in my integrity as a leadership and resiliency consultant if I did not point out that we often learn what NOT to do by watch abhorrent behavior.

Think of employee experience as a combination of relationships, opportunities, environment, and—of course benefits. I would bet that everyone has had a time in which they walked into an office and could feel the chill in the air. If you look at the corporate web site, it can tell you much. For example, in one organization. all the people listed has their first names but not the president who was called Mr. So-and-So. Umm. Not a great experience.

Consider interaction at meetings. Are all the voices heard or are some voices ignored. Do people have their heads down and hardly glance up or are their smiles and greetings. Ranked as the third Great Place to work in 2018, Ultimate Software has created an environment that emphasizes its mission: People First. From the time you walk into corporate headquarters, you see coffee break rooms designed with specific themes, bicycle racks to encourage riding to work. healthy food that is cheaper in the cafeteria. Employees can be seen smiling and talking with each other. Amazing work gets done but all in an environment that continues to give serious consideration to living its values:

At Ultimate Software, we believe that people are the most important ingredient of any business. It's the people who ultimately determine what can be achieved. That's why creating a culture based on trust, respect, and inclusion is our top priority. We encourage our people to always reach higher, learn more, and live up to their potential, delivering our customers the best global human capital management solutions possible.

In fact, I would contend that for a resilient, sustainable culture, just study Ultimate Software. Then ask this question: What would it take for my organization to replicate these experiences?


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Eileen McDargh Keynote Speaker Blog Author

About Eileen!

Since beginning her consulting and training practice in 1980, Eileen has become noted for her ability to speak the truth with clarity, wisdom, humor and compassion. Long-standing clients and repeat engagements attest to her commitment to make a difference in minds, hearts and spirits of organizations and individuals. She draws upon practical business know-how, life's experiences and years of consulting to major national and international organizations that have ranged from global pharmaceuticals to the US Armed Forces, from health care associations to religious institutions. Executive Excellence magazine selected her as one of the top 100 thought leaders in leadership and among the top ten consultant providers of leadership development.

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