Most Undervalued Company Benefit? Benefit of the Doubt.
It's not always easy to trust someone; trust, like respect, is often earned. In business that trust often comes with great responsibility and at a price.When you assign a task to a subordinate, you expect it to get done. If it doesn't, there will likely be consequences. But what about when it's a co-worker or your superior? Be honest: are you just as confident it will get done?
Some companies like to tout their benefits package as reason to join them, but its often the intangibles that attract the best people. A healthy working environment, one that fosters communication, encourages input from all employees, is much more inviting than discount park tickets and casual Fridays.
I've found that the best companies tend to trust their employees. Not blindly of course, but give them the benefit of the doubt that they can and will do their job to the best of their abilities. I'm not talking about those first jobs you had as a teenager busing tables, stocking shelves, or getting coffee. After all, we all had that one college class that we bluffed our way through so it's human natural to push the limits. Often you need to use a bit more "hands-on" management on entry-level and that's OK.
There's been a lot of effort recently by some large companies to create fun work environments. Most attribute (read: blame) this on Millennials. Now I haven't been Millennial age in nearly a millennium, but I think the assumption that making a fun workplace is the only way to attract the best talent is misguided and unfair. Free craft beer and nap rooms aside, I'd prefer to work for a company that trusted my judgement, my opinions, and my work ethic. Yes, and even at lesser pay. Think about the jobs you've had where you learned the most. Were they the ones you earned the most?
Because when it comes down to it, it's often a reflection on your company's vetting process. Want to give your employees the benefit of the doubt? Do your homework before you hire. Call references, schedule multiple interviews, get sample work when applicable, and be confident that HR has done its job of finding the right candidates.
So trust your employees and trust yourself for making the right choice.