Whatever happened to human contact and co-worker collaboration? Sometimes we’re so busy trying to meet yesterday’s deadline or prepare for tomorrow’s meeting that we shoot off a quick, stiff email rather than talk face-to-face. Or we send a “thx” to the person who saved our bacon, while we mind our own business staring at our smartphone over lunch.
Studies, including one conducted in 2017 by Babson College, have shown that companies promoting collaboration are 5x as likely to be high performing. Additionally, providing “social support” was one of the top 10 things that companies could do to help keep their workers healthy.
To us, more collaboration adds up to a better workplace. That’s why this week we’re focusing on ideas to get us all working together — and having some fun while doing it.
- Encourage more face-to-face meetings. No one wants another meeting on their calendar, but just getting up from your desk to walk to a meeting room can provide a nice mental and physical break. It will help get the creativity flowing, too! Face-to-face meetings also give interpersonal relationships a boost and help those workers with wallflower tendencies (who can easily hide in an online meeting) feel more included. We’re not saying add more meetings, just switch some of the already-scheduled online meetings to in-person.
- Try a meeting outdoors. There are some tasks that simply require four walls and a roof over your head to get done. Meetings aren’t always one of them. Our suggestion: if you’re conducting a quick check-in or brainstorming meeting, move outside whenever the weather is nice. You’ll get the same work accomplished but with a change of scenery that makes everyone a little happier to be there.
- Post a “thank-you” board. While a simple board with push-pins doesn’t equal true collaboration, it DOES remind everyone to show how much they appreciate their co-workers’ impact and effort. Says Alsco (our inspiration for these 13 weeks of wellness), “When people feel appreciated, they tend to feel better about themselves and keep it up.” We’re also pretty sure that a physical thank-you board conspicuously posted in a common area containing notes of appreciation will become a great conversation piece and a convenient place for everyone to congregate and celebrate wins on a regular basis.
Who would be on our thank-you board? New Zealand company, Alsco, because they provided us with 146 pretty great workplace wellness tips. We’ve been enjoying them all summer. Thanks, Alsco!
Better workplace collaboration leads to more productive and happier employees.