Posted on 06 April 2020
As everyone knows, there are days when work is difficult and tedious. In such times, it greatly helps to have a positive workplace, and colleagues who can support each other through the rough patches.
In that spirit, we’d like to present some small ways you can make your work fun for both yourself and those you work with. As the coronavirus continues to spread, it’s all the more important to keep our spirits up whether working from home or on the frontline.
So, please do:
A smile may be a simple thing, but it communicates positivity and friendliness. Never doubt the power of a smile in encouraging and uplifting those around you!
Be it the colleague you see on the way to the lift, or the auntie who keeps your workplace clean, give them a smile when greeting them and watch their faces light up. If you’re working from home, share your happy smile with family and friends. Don’t forget those who enter your life only for a moment, either, like the deliveryman who brings you food or the customer service officer who helps troubleshoot your laptop woes.
Also, smiling is contagious. Smile more, and soon you will find others smiling with you, making for a friendly, accepting workplace that’s fun to be in!
Some people go to work with the mistaken idea that work is professional and not a place to make friends. This old belief hinges on the misconception that work friendships influence decisions and bias people, making for an office filled with nepotism and “yes-men”.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Such “professional” behavior merely creates a wall between yourself and others, and they will be unable to trust and depend on you in vital situations
Instead, foster and cherish workplace friendships like you would any other bond. Open up to your colleagues, and hear them out when they wish to talk to you as well. You may wish to start small with sending encouraging emojis on Whatsapp, or sending a simple “Happy Birthday” email to a colleague. Then, as you all get along, you can organise outings or form a support group for those having a hard time.
When the office is open and collaborative, work will be much less of a drag and much more of an adventure together. Furthermore, having friends at work can create a support system, camaraderie and a sense of loyalty.
Steve Jobs famously said: "Creativity comes from spontaneous meetings, from random discussions. You run into someone, you ask what they're doing, you say 'Wow,' and soon you're cooking up all sorts of ideas."
His words underline the importance of a collaborative work culture where people feel confident and assured in expressing their ideas, believing that they will contribute to a better product in the end.
Foster that culture by depending on others and letting them depend on you. During projects, be open to input and feedback, and don’t try to stand out or take on more than your fair share. When your colleagues learn that you’re open and willing to consider their opinion, they’ll be happy to be part of your team and engaged in supporting the organisation’s goals.
Now, working from home will be the norm for a while, maintaining good working relationships matters more than ever. Drop a line to those you haven’t seen in a while, or pick up the phone for a chat with your manager to keep him or her in the loop.
Many work-related Facebook or Whatsapp groups have taken to sharing Covid-19 related news and messages of encouragement, keeping workplace connections alive. This has proven especially useful for more introverted or awkward folks who “don’t know what to say” – simply sharing a news article or ‘liking’ a tweet is a form of silent support that goes a long way to showing how much you care.
A warm and accepting office atmosphere can go a great way to making work less of a drag, or supporting a colleague. Do you part to make your organisation a place that makes people smile – be they customers, stakeholders or employees!
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