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In the early days of running a startup, cash is low. You need top talent in order to grow and earn a profit. It appears to be a catch-22 if you assume that the only way to allure and retain top talent is with a hefty paycheck.

This isn’t always the case. At my company, Digital Talent Agents, we look for team members who don’t name money as their primary motivator. Instead, their motivators are the ability to lead, the freedom to work from home, or an amazing culture in the workplace (all of which we have, of course).

The fact of the matter is there are plenty of ways to motivate and retain amazing employees beyond a fat paycheck. Here are some of my favorites:

Make Your Team a Community

My friend, Max Durovic, founder of AArrow Advertising, put it perfectly: “The number-one thing any employer can provide, besides a paycheck, is membership in an organization that embodies that person’s core values, along with the opportunity for personal growth and development in those areas.”

Max says that he wants AArrow to not just be a company that employs young people, but an organization that embodies ideas such as continued education, physical fitness, service to the community, and strong family relationships. Many people are motivated by being part of something bigger and being part of a community they can relate to.

Take Action

For Max, this means buying books for employees who are taking marketing classes, or going on a team run during a meeting. For your organization, it could mean organizing community service activities with the team during work hours, or promoting teamwork through team-building exercises on a regular basis.

Offer Flexibility

If it’s not imperative that your employees work every hour of the workweek from a physical office, offering some flexibility in the hours and location of work can be very beneficial for the team as a whole. We have a beautiful office with amazing coworkers, so we love coming into work every day.

However, we have an open workflow, meaning our team members can work from wherever they work best whenever they work best. This flexibility allows people to work on a bus on their way out of town, or from their relatives’ houses when they need some family time. It’s still important for us to all work together at times, but this flexibility is a huge selling point when bringing on top talent.

Take Action

If a completely open workflow scares you, try it on a small scale by instituting what we call Late-Start Wednesdays. Tell everyone to work from home (or wherever they want) before lunch on Wednesdays. Make sure not to schedule any team meetings during these hours, and allow people to work on things they can do alone.

Make Work Fun

You don’t have to pay for limo rides and fancy dinners to show people the perks of working for the company – although they never hurt! Instead, institute events like Cocktails and Dodgeball, conversation pieces like d-bag jars, and celebrations for birthdays and other holidays to keep the workday fun.

Take Action

Create a fun committee and hold them accountable. If your fun committee’s idea of fun is scheduling one happy hour every quarter after work, then you need to try something new. Doing cheap, simple things, like getting a piñata for someone’s birthday or having a chip-and-dip competition at the office, can brighten up any day.

by Kelsey Meyer

Source : Forbes

 

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