This Company's New Perk Is Sending Employees on International Trips
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“We're always trying to find interesting, unique ways to motivate our employees and make them proud to work,” Experticity CFO Heather Mercier told Entrepreneur.
So how does it work? Any employee who has been at the company for at least one year and participated in payroll giving for at least six months (that could be donating between $2 to $150 per paycheck) is given the opportunity to travel to Nepal, Bolivia, Kenya or Ecuador on the company's dime. On these trips, Experticity volunteers could be working on a number of different projects depending on the needs of the place they visit, including building classrooms, community water systems, health clinics or personal hygiene workshops or training locals in micro-enterprises.
“This is a really unique way to give to our employees and fuel their passion for giving back to the world and building camaraderie,” Mercier says. The program is about empowering employees and team building. “If there's a group of five employees that go to Nepal, what they bring back after that trip will spread way beyond just those five people.”
Mercier further expanded on what on how she’s rolled out the new program and provided some tips for how you can build something similar at your company.
1. Find the right partner.
“When [you’re] coming up with the program, [have] a really good partner,” Mercier says. For Experticity, that meant finding a company that holds similar core values. Experticity partnered with Choice Humanitarian, which books flights and provides documentation requirements.
2. Listen to employees.
Don’t make the decisions alone -- work with the entire company to decide on certain aspects of the program.
“We had the whole company (more than 240 employees) vote on five different causes to support and it was a pretty overwhelming vote -- they wanted to choose clean water because it has so many implications in people's lives," Mercier says. "And then we chose five different groups that supported clean water around the world and rolled out the program.”
3. Pursue programs that align with your company.
“Many of our employees are very passionate about giving back and making the world a better place,” Mercier says. “This is a really unique way to give to our employees and fuel their passion for giving back to the world and building camaraderie.”