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Skip the quinoa bar and head for the library

With companies trying to hire the best-qualified people to fill their vacancies, additional job perks in the form of benefits-in-kind are coming on stream like never before.

Forget office desks, office chairs and the working environment for a moment! Society's obsession with physical fitness and trendy diets has reached unprecedented levels, and employers are responding to this cultural movement by offering gym subscriptions at reduced rates or perhaps even free of charge. Bigger companies go the extra mile and have workout facilities installed on their premises, while canteens are being supplemented by unpronounceable salads, a host of herbal teas and even an offering of quinoa.


Exercise your employees' minds, not their biceps - Our fixation with physical appearance has been taken to the next level and, while staying in physical shape is, of course, a good thing, it is also important to keep your brain razor-sharp.

Studies reveal that the current generation of 18- to 25-year-olds are reading less intellectually-challenging material than ever before, opting instead to bury their head into their social media channels, reading comments from "influencers" that are of questionable value.

You simply can't beat a good book - This is a major problem that the corporate world needs to stand up and fight against. Instead of offering employees cheap gym subscriptions and something quirky like a quinoa bar, it would be more beneficial to offer a free or subsidised book service filled with all of the best authors from today and yesteryear.

Employees who want to exercise can do so by going for a brisk walk at home or joining their local sports team. The need for a gym subscription isn't always so pressing, nor does everybody want to spend time in a gym. As for the quinoa bar, well the finance involved in such a venture could be better spent elsewhere – such as establishing an exclusive company library.

Introduce your staff to the great writers - There is a far greater benefit in introducing employees to the wonderful world of reading than the grunting of a weights room. From Roald Dahl to JK Rowling, and James Joyce to George Orwell, there is a writer and genre for everybody to enjoy - A book worm is generally a more rounded person than a gym rat who likes to refuel with a helping of quinoa. Offer your employees the ultimate gift – the gift of reading. As a gesture, it will say so much more about your company than dishing out hearty helpings of quinoa.

Posted by: Josh Seddon

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