In today’s technologically advanced world, it can feel like we are more connected than ever before. After all, you can communicate with anyone, anywhere in the world with a click of a button. However, there are downsides to a digitally connected world, especially as it relates to building community in the workplace.
The main issue is that the more connected we become online, the less connected we are in person. The growing number of work-from-home jobs is evidence of that. By separating ourselves through our computer screens and phones, we are reducing productivity and cooperation in the workplace.
The good news is that there are ways to fix this problem and increase the productivity and connectivity of your staff.
How to increase connectivity in the workplace?
1. Create an Altruistic Environment
Research conducted by Shawn Anchor showed that “work altruists were 10 times more likely to be engaged […] and 40% more likely to receive a promotion.” These people are the ones who are so connected to the mission of a company that they increase social interaction during a crisis, rather than decrease it.
To encourage this sort of perspective in the workplace, you will need to create an environment that relies heavily on a strong mission. A positive workplace culture is another way to achieve this goal. Creating this environment can be accomplished over time with just a few simple steps.
- Show gratitude: Say thank you as often as possible. Hearing that you appreciate the work they are doing will make your employees more eager to do that work.
- Give support: Create a workplace practice of mutual support. Have different employees team up when someone is getting behind. This can help build a sense of community.
- Celebrate: When someone does something big in the office, celebrate. This can be through a company-paid lunch or a special company outing. Either way, make sure your employees feel their hard work is appreciated.
2. Implement a Weekly, Bi-Weekly or Monthly Meeting Schedule
It may seem unnecessary to have in-person team meetings when you can just send out a weekly update through email. However, getting everyone who is responsible for a project or section of the company in one room can greatly improve productivity.
For one, being around other people focused on a singular task can help spark creativity. Additionally, physical interaction can help build a sense of trust and honesty amongst teammates. A simple handshake at the morning meeting will help produce more connected employees.
Having in-person meetings can also help you, the employer, pick up on non-verbal cues. Because about 55% of what we communicate comes from facial expressions and gestures, in-person meetings will allow you to identify disgruntled or stressed employees. You can then proactively work with them to come up with a solution that will benefit the office community.
3. Relocate Employees to Build Community at Your Company
While there has been a study or two that show remote workers are more productive, it’s no question that people feel more connected when consuming the same physical space. If you can afford to, consider consolidating your remote employees and relocating them into one office. This can greatly improve workplace relations.
Bringing everyone together under one roof may seem like a daunting task. If you have ever relocated employees before, you know the headache that can come with it. That is why you should enlist the help of an employee relocation software, like UrbanBound.
UrbanBound’s smart software can help you administer relocation benefits, as well as provide a seamless transition for the employee. Having a stressful relocation process is incredibly important as it will help you connect your employees without driving them away. UrbanBound makes the entire moving process simple, easy, and enjoyable. (Find out more about our relocation management software here).
Community in the Workplace
In the end, increasing workplace connectivity is not a difficult task. It only takes a few small gestures to build trust, openness, and pride in your company. If your employees are spread across the country, however, this can be a bit more difficult.
The good news is that smart solutions, like UrbanBound, make relocating employees easy. When everyone is in one place, you too can begin implementing some altruistic methods to create the workplace environment every employer—and employee—desires.