In 1977 the Eagles released their song “Hotel California”. The song tells the tale of a luxurious hotel — one where the food is free and the entertainment plenty.
Welcome to the world of the modern day startup. Where companies outcompete each other on the perks they are offering their employees: “A workplace so good you’ll never leave. It’s as much fun as life outside of work.”
As much as free food, free massages and all the other freebies sound like the land of milk and honey — the Eagles had it right when they sang: “We are all just prisoners here, of our own device.”
Next time you evaluate a job offer, or figure out if you should leave your current place or consider which perks to offer your employees — think about the things which really count. The stuff which creates lasting value — for you and your employees: Working on something bigger than oneself. Making a dent in the universe. Having autonomy. Learning something new every day. Knowing that your contribution counts.
All much more important than having free organic triple-filtered carrot juice in the fridge (nothing wrong with that — just make sure you figure out the really important bits first).