My first job was at the ripe old age of 14, working for a grocery store in Toronto, Canada. Typical part-time student job. The company was a family-owned business that literally started off as a small mom-and-pop corner shop selling fresh produce. By the time my young and eager-self showed up, it was a massive corporation with chains all over the province and over 5,000 employees. They were a very successful company because they prided themselves on maintaining the same core values as when they were a small business: honesty, trustworthiness, and mutual respect. They focused on people.

Cue my first day on the job. In-house training. Now I’m going, to be honest, I don’t remember much from that day.

That is, except for one training video.

The bulky TV in front of me showed a little old man, bald-headed with a few grey hairs on the side, circular coke-bottle glasses, and a large white mustache yelling at me to “GIVE ‘EM THE PICKLE”.

The video seriously exists. Google it. It’s a whole philosophy.

Now this adorable little, old man was not crazy. He actually had a great point. If a regular customer comes into your restaurant once or twice a week, orders and pays for a hamburger meal every time, and each time he asks for an extra slice of pickle – you better give him the pickle. Why? Because this customer will remain loyal, he will always come back and the cost of that pickle versus the business he generates for your company is unmatchable. Moral of the story, keep your customer happy, even at the cost of an extra pickle slice.

This concept can be extended. When we think of who shareholders are in a business, no doubt we place significant importance on our clients. The end-users. But, what about the wonderful people who help make your business a success, the ones who deliver the service your customers come to expect. Your talent base. These people are also shareholders and they damn well deserve a pickle too.

Ok let’s get real, we are no longer talking about actual pickles but rather the little extra you as a business do or give to your talented people to keep them loyal and wanting to come back every Monday. This can be anything from healthy lifestyle support, personal budgets for on-going learning, ping-pong tables in the office to flexible work hours. This is the little extra that goes a long way and really makes people feel like they are part of a team.

As chance would have it I happen to be completely obsessed with pickles. I mean like seriously. They are my go-to-food, my break-glass-in-case-of-emergency comfort snack. I love them. So much so that on my CV, among a list of facts, there is a single bullet that reads “loves pickles”.

Fast forward to my first day at Atlantbh. Like every other talented person who starts off here, I received a welcome package on my desk. T-shirt, stationary, breakfast bar and … a jar of pickles.

They gave me the pickle.

I can’t wait to come back on Monday.

About the Author

Amela Trokić is a Talent and Marketing Manager at Atlantbh. Ever the one for adventure and new challenges, Amela has racked up an international professional portfolio having worked in 5 countries. Amela is currently working on employee motivation and benefits at Atlantbh, where her goal is to contribute to a healthy and positive work culture.

All information in this specific blog represents the personal opinion of Amela Trokić and does not necessarily reflect that of Atlantbh.

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October 28, 2020

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