By: Kaitlyn Hudlow, M.S.
Now more than ever, company culture is an important factor for a successful business. It is a known fact that people will be happier to pull into work every day knowing they are a part of a team, not just another worker bee. One way to start building that “team” feeling, is by showing your co-workers you appreciate them. Below are 10 simple ways to show your co-workers you care!
10. Ask questions: Something as simple as, “How was your weekend?” goes a long way in showing your co-workers that you’re interested in their lives outside of work.
9. Say thanks: Never underestimate the power of good manners! If someone goes out of their way to help you with a project or client, let them know it meant a lot that they were there to support you.
8. Open up a bit: I’m not saying you have to go around telling everyone your whole life story, but opening up a bit about your hobbies, kids, pets, etc. can help build relationships with your co-workers. What does this have to do with showing you care? Byputting a little bit of yourself out there, you’re showing others that you care about your work relationships, and that you want to share life experiences with the people you see every day.
(Staff brought their dogs to the company picnic!)
7. Bring souvenirs: Going somewhere fun? Bring back a little something for the people back at home! Recently a co-worker here at Partners went to Hawaii with his family, and brought back Kona coffee candies for everyone at the office. That simple gesture was a thoughtful, inexpensive way to let us know he was thinking about us while on island time.
6. Give pats on the back: Did you take notice of something a co-worker recently did? Tell them! Getting recognition from colleagues is a great way to boost morale in the office. I recently had an experience where a co-worker “gave me props” in a staff meeting for updating one of our client’s membership packets. It may not have seemed that significant to others in the room, but it certainly put a smile on my face for the rest of the day.
5. Celebrate events: Life is full of excitement! Birthdays, weddings, babies…the list goes on! When someone in the office has an exciting life event happening, it makes it even more exciting when others want to talk about it and celebrate along with them! At Partners, we recently had one of our staff get married and most everyone in the office attended her wedding party. Because of the social culture that has been built within the company, everyone understood that it was a big day in her life, and we all wanted to be there to share the moment with her!
4. Be understanding: Sometimes in life, things don’t go to plan. You can be leaving the house for work tomorrow and your car doesn’t start, or you wake up to your child having the chicken pox. No matter how hard we try, there are just some things that happen. The best thing you can do for your co-workers in those situations is to be understanding. For example, if you have a meeting scheduled with someone in the morning, and they call to tell you they’re running into some trouble and won’t be in until noon, do your best to accommodate them and re-schedule the meeting. They will always remember how understanding you were in their tough situation, and make sure to return the favor when it’s you that has something come up.
3. Anticipate needs: When you want to do something thoughtful for your co-workers, make sure to take into account other aspects of their lives to anticipate what they would most enjoy. For example, this past January Florida State University made it to the National Championship for college football. The majority of our staff are FSU fans, so it was a big day here at Partners! The morning after the football game, a staff member who is not that big of a football fan brought in coffee and bagels for everyone saying, “I was thinking that most of your were up late last night watching the game, so I thought I’d bring in breakfast.” That, my friends, is what I call anticipating needs! Not only was it thoughtful for her to bring in food, but it was perfectly planned for when everyone in the office would most appreciate it.(The bagels Rachel brought for us tired FSU folks)
2. Help when you can: Everyone has been in that situation where there was just too much to do, and not enough time. The next time you see that a co-worker is in need of a helping held, offer one! Here at Partners, the Member Services Department directs all incoming phone calls , handles special projects and processes data entry and payments. On days where one or more of the Member Services Department is out of the office, as you can imagine it gets pretty crazy for them! On those days, staff from different departments offer to help cover phones to give Member Services time to complete other necessary tasks. Helping when you can not only tells your co-workers you appreciate them, but also builds the culture of team work and collaboration in the office.
1. Take pride in communal areas: The company break room or kitchen is a wonderful place for co-workers to catch up as they make their morning coffee. However, a dirty sink or smelly refrigerator can quickly ruin that welcoming atmosphere. Taking pride in communal areas shows your co-workers that you take pride in the company you work for and that you care about the people you work with.
(Fully packed, but clean Partners fridgeJ)
There’s no doubt that company culture and a “team spirit” are important factors for a successful business. Hopefully, these tips will help to facilitate an environment that promotes productivity, as well as comradery and a bit of fun!