Brendon Evans, National Business Development Leader at Malt Shovel
90,000 hours. That’s over a decade of our life that we spend at our desks, in the staff kitchen, standing at the printer and catching up with colleagues in corridors. Once you think about our working lives as a solid block of time, it really highlights the importance of working in a place where we feel valued, included and engaged. So how do you go about fostering that type of workplace culture in a business – so you’ll not only attract great employees, but also keep them around?
Employees today are looking for workplaces that can offer them more. Whether it be flexible work hours or Friday afternoon beers, work perks can attract and retain good staff. Crucially, some of these perks directly support sociability in the workplace – the social interactions that lead to strong relationships and communication between co-workers and departments. Sociability is key to creating a collaborative community, breaking down barriers and helping employees to feel valued and engaged in their workplace. And as Gallup research shows, business units with high engagement are 17% more productive, have 41% less absenteeism and 24% less turnover.
The way we approach workplace culture and employee engagement appears to be rapidly changing for the better. A recent Clutch survey indicated that younger employees find it important to receive consistent and accurate feedback from managers. Major companies are shifting away from formal annual reviews, and towards more regular and relaxed feedback to help employees self-manage their motivation and performance. It seems that employees want to make a difference and be challenged.
Why the focus on younger employees? Here in Australia, millennials are expected to make up a whopping 75% of the workforce by 2025. They’re also more likely to leave a job than previous generations, particularly if they feel they can’t learn, grow or advance – or if they don’t know what they’re working towards.
Of course, this makes the feedback loop vitally important. And what better opportunity to have informal, relaxed conversations about shared goals, performance and successes than sharing a beer on a Friday afternoon? That’s where I come in in. My role as National Business Development Leader at Malt Shovel is all about connecting businesses with quality beer solutions, so you can reward and interact with your teams once the workday is done.
I spend my days meeting with businesses who are looking for a modern and appealing way to improve their workplace culture. I try and help them create a more sociable workplace and offer their staff some perks, which in turn leads to better engagement. These perks can include setting offices up with counter-top beer tap systems and regular beer delivery from breweries like Little Creatures, Brooklyn Brewery and James Squire, along with wine and kombucha so the work fridge is always full of drinks to socialise with. I also help organise beer events such as tastings, beer and food matching, educational sessions on how to taste beer and the ingredients that make up beer, as well as brewing nights. They’re all great ways to engage staff differently.
In my line of work I’ve seen a vast range of workplaces across various industries. I’ve worked with large national businesses through to small independent operators; with the dairy industry, quick service restaurants, corporate caterers and now back to the wine and beer industry which I first began working in 15 years ago. My experience allows me to get a deeper understanding of the issues confronting my customers, and hopefully solve those problems for them.
If you’re interested in incorporating beer solutions into your workplace, I’d be happy to help. Get in touch and we can explore the many options at a time that suits.