Are You a Cheapskate Employer?

Bernie Reifkind

Bernie Reifkind

Good afternoon, ProviderNation.

There is a world of difference between being a shrewd business employer and being a tight-wadded cheapskate. And if you are wondering whether or not your employees know the difference, let me be candid—they do.

So why does it mater? If you, as an employer, are generous and seek the very best in whatever resources, in whatever costs, whatever means that you have available to lavish upon your valuable employees, then they will respond in kind.

Generosity comes in many forms, and it begins from the heart.

If however, your staff are kept in the dark, if you are “absent,” and if they perceive that their only goal is to make you more money, then you are setting yourself up for impending doom. Doom, in this case, could mean lots of employee turnover. Turnover, as you know, is a business headache and extremely costly, not only monetarily but in employee morale.

Of course, business is about making money. But employees also work for much more than just money. In my more than 25 years of recruitment experience, I have found that the No. 1 reason why someone leaves a job or stays at a job is their boss.

Even when cash flow is a problem, generous employers can display appreciation, gratitude, and honesty about the work done by their employees. A simple pat on the back or even a hand-written card about a job well done is extremely generous.

In addition, public praise can be another huge gift to an employee. Imagine for a moment the impact on your staff if—in a meeting or a public area—you were to praise an employee by saying something like: “Jim, you are doing a spectacular job, and I want to thank you on behalf of not just myself—but the entire company. Does anyone else agree? If so, please let Jim know about it—he deserves it.”

Imagine how powerful that would be to not only Jim but to the morale of your entire staff. It’s a gift that could last a lifetime.

In summary, it is never too late to stop being a cheapskate employer. In fact a good idea is to simply say “thank you” to each employee at the end of each work day (if that is logistically possible). I do that every day, and I have received so much positive feedback from my staff.

Lastly, try to remember that when your employees show up every day to work for you, it is a gift, even though you are paying them. They, too, are busy juggling their own outside lives, raising children, caring for aging parents, having bills to pay, with worries and dreams just like all of us.

A little kindness and compassion can go a long way toward the success of your operation.

Bernie Reifkind is chief executive officer and founder of Premier Search, a nationwide executive search firm. He can be reached at (800) 801-1400 or at

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Filed under health care, Long term care, Post-acute care

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