DETROIT -- Want to retain employees? You might consider supplying them with a game room and “nap pod.” That’s what Mercedes-Benz Financial Services does.
The captive finance arm shares ideas with Silicon Valley to attract and keep its talent base, which leaders believe is the secret to success.
“We’ve been doing [some of it] quite a long time, probably before the Googles and Facebooks were founded,” said Peter Zieringer, CEO of Mercedes-Benz Financial Services’ Americas region. “You try to go beyond the eight-hours-a-day work time and separate it completely from your leisure time and try to create an atmosphere that feels more like you’re in a family than in a workplace.”
At the company’s Americas region headquarters in Farmington Hills, Mich., near Detroit, for example, there is a gourmet cafeteria that serves up such items as wood-fired pizza, fresh salads and made-to-order burgers. It doubles as an activities center. As part of a green initiative, food is served on china with silverware instead of on paper plates with plastic utensils. Employees who opt to take food back to their desks can leave the dish and silverware in a common area on their floor for cafeteria staff to pick up later.