Don’t Worry, Take Time Off for a Haircut, and Be Happy

While you’re trying to convince that hot prospect that a week of vacation is pretty standard, be glad you’re not competing against a UK employer. There, employees at more than a few firms can get time off for cosmetic procedures like Botox shots, facials, and haircuts.

And that’s not even the most unusual bene. Nigerian workers get an electric generator to use at home, says Mercer. In China, you get at least three days off to get married. The Aussies reward their employees for loyalty, typically giving them three months off after 15 years. It grows by a month for every additional five years.

And you thought free Starbucks in the break room was a big deal.

The Happiest Places

Living here in Southern California, you kinda get to believing the happiest place is Disneyland. Turns out that’s only 26 miles off. CareerBliss says the #1 happiest U.S. city for young professionals is Los Angeles. Irvine, which is 19 miles away from Mickey’s California resort, is #6 on the list.

Heidi Golledge, Chief Happiness Officer and co-founder, says a “positive company culture, which focuses on overall happiness and not just compensation, is key for young professionals.” Course most of the cities in the top 10 just happen to have above-average pay scales, plus great weather, a nearby ocean, plenty of companies to jump to, movie stars; none of which, except the pay, counts in the CareerBliss survey.

That explains how Indianapolis snuck in at #4.

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There Really Is a Free Lunch Bene

And how appropriate that Stackoverflow is providing it. The hook here? Unless you work for the cool Q&A programmers’ site you have to win it. OK, so it’s not free that way, but if you enter and win, you get free lunch for the whole department, up to $2,500. That’ll buy a whole lot of pizza and Mountain Dew.

The contest promotes Stackoverflow’s new job board. “There are three open opportunities for every programmer out there,” the good folks at Stackoverflow warned ominously, suggesting, though, that by checking out the new career site  you might find just the perfect one. Or at least get lunch.

And Now We Leave You With This


John Zappe is the editor of and a contributing editor of John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.


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