The smart companies attract great people.
But, importantly, they have learnt how to keep them. They know they are in a talent war. When you look beyond a good salary, other factors begin to play a much bigger part. Is this company a learning environment? Can I control my own destiny? Does this company want to change something? And, indeed, are they interested in looking after me? The pioneers have found ways to bring all these aspects to their businesses. It makes them stand out. And it makes them great places to work for.
Which, in turn, makes them great businesses. The pioneers understand the importance of how humans work best, when they are at their most creative, and the importance of long-term thinking when it comes to its people.
The old way of thinking was to celebrate the workaholic. The badge of honour goes to those who work the longest, the ones who pull the all-nighters. But the longer you work, the less productive you are. The less creative you are. And, the more grumpy you are. And the chances of burning out are not if, but merely when.
Jason Fried (Basecamp) sets his company’s servers using a new ‘Work Can Wait’ system that allows individuals to set their own work notification schedule so that work doesn’t follow them home. No weekends, no nothing. He believes that no one makes the best decisions when they are just plain tired. And workaholics don’t save the day, they just use it up. The real hero is already home because she figured out a faster way to get things done. He encourages a maximum of 40 hours work. And 8 hours sleep at night.