Until five years ago, yoga and meditation were only something people practiced in a studio, ashram or the privacy of their home. Now, in-office yoga is all the rave. Companies tout their perks as part of their culture from razor scooters, ping pong tables, movie theaters, meal stipends, standing/ walking/ swimming (soon) desks, to yoga and meditation programs. In the world of recruitment and “talent acquisition,” (that’s my favorite) companies are all seeking ways to entice young talent to join, and now days it requires Google-like perks. In Chicago I’ve become privy to the land of recruitment through happenstance, and I’ve had a glimpse from inside, and the struggle is real for many companies.

There are establishment companies everywhere gritting their teeth, fighting the shift and word to the wise – evolve or go extinct. The truth is business is not “business as usual.” Many companies are loosing their relevance. Whether Boomers believe it or not, Chase needs to keep up with Simple; the taxi industry will inevitably be overtaken by ride-sharing; credit cards will only exist on smart devices. It’s no longer a world of “Do as I say and move up the ladder,” but a world of “Listen to what I have to say, or I’ll leave your company and start a better one.”

Companies that now struggle with keeping great talent and producing leadership, should consider pulling down the cubicles, buying giant bean bags, replacing the mahogany board room table with a yoga studio and cut the budget for soft drinks and hire a full-time barista to serve coffee and fresh juice. Bottom line, if companies don’t evolve, they won’t have a bottom line to worry about. If companies want great talent, then I suggest taking off the suit and allowing people to work from their pajamas. Take a deep breath in through your nose, and exhale through the mouth – repeat three more times. Everything will be alright; change isn’t as scary as the lack of change. Don’t be the 1% that still uses dial-up internet.

15 Amazing Perks at Chicago Companies, From ‘Ferris Bueller Days’ to In-House Baristas

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