There's a plethora of articles around saying that treats at work produce happy employees. But treats are only small part of the equation and the treats are only valued if the underlying culture recognises and rewards great work.... and if people feel valued for what they do and how they behave. I think managers often forget to think about themselves and what makes them feel good about their day to day - and apply the same values to their staff. You want to be able to work from home when your kid's sick, right? You want to be able to go to her dance show. You want to be trusted to get your work done, and you want to be recognised when you do a good job. So start by assuming that that's what the people who work for you want too. And if you can't trust them, they're the wrong people - and you can deal with that.
In the end of the day, it's all about mutual respect and do as you would be done by. With a bit of thought and sensitivity, all workplaces can be great workplaces. And that's good for the bottom line.
"The best places to work are those in which people can flourish and be their best selves – instead of pretending to be someone else five days a week. The perfect workplace also gives people flexibility and autonomy as to where and how they work, built on a culture of growth and trust.” "Team-building days, social events and ensuring a pleasant office environment – all are vital to happiness at work and creating a community spirit among colleagues.”