I had the pleasure of attending the ‘Thriving Workplace’ conference last week, where corporate leaders from across Australia discussed & shared ideas that could make workplaces more kind and inspiring places to be. It was a real privilege to be in a room filled with good humans who believe what we believe and share our mission to create workplaces where people can thrive.
The theme that emerged was a sense of ‘belonging’ being a key contributor to people’s sense of purpose and wellbeing in the workplace. It’s no wonder that this is a hot topic given the challenges that organisations are facing with increasingly dispersed teams, hot-desking and flexible working. Teams are now less likely to be in the same physical location and we are increasingly reliant on technology to keep us connected. We are seeing that relationships at work and life are becoming more transactional and less meaningful…
Have you noticed this to?
As a dispersed team here at CLARETY, this topic is dear to our hearts as we grapple with this for our own business as well as, with our clients’ businesses.
So, with countless studies identifying connection and belonging as a fundamental human need AND required for us to be happy and engaged in the workplace, this month we are going to explore ways to create human connection no matter where your team is located.
So whether your team is big or small, dispersed or not or, you personally are struggling with connection or belonging to the people in your life…Read on for the latest research supporting the power of connected relationship on wellbeing and, the top 3 practical ways that we create a sense of connection in the CLARETY business.
What keeps us happy and healthy as we go through life? If you think its fame and money, you’re not alone but, according to psychiatrist Robert Waldinger, you’re mistaken. The quality of our relationships determines the quality of our lives.
However, modern life is making us lonelier, and recent research indicates that this may be the next biggest public health issue on par with obesity and substance abuse. A recent review of studies indicates that loneliness increases mortality risk by 26%.
So we really have to work at increasing our connection with others to combat some of the changes happening in our society. If we are less likely to be in the same physical location as loved ones or our team members and, we increasingly rely on screens or short form (text) to communicate then we have to conciously work on our connection with others.
With full transparency I thought I’d share some of the insight from our business on how we create a sense of belonging given we are a dispersed team. The focus on this came after a particularly challenging time in our business where we were working at breakneck speed and delivering and travelling most weeks. Our interactions with the people in our team started to become transactional. We stopped asked the basics like ‘how are you?’, ‘what’s going on in your life right now?’ and instead just focused on all the tasks we had to get off the ‘to-do-list’…we became disconnected as a team (and I love my team!) and it made me miserable and it nearly broke us. But, as they say, with the break downs come the breakthroughs!
Here are some of the processes that we have embedded into our business to dial up the connectivity, increase that sense of belonging and importantly, get us back happy and healthy as a team…
Give good Values!
We started the business on this foundation and regularly revisit them…with a new team member coming on-board it gave us the change to run a values session. We asked ourselves:
This shared meaning helped us understand each other a little more and acted like a glue to more closely bind us and dial up the belonging….
Have a great workflow process
We adopted a ‘scrum’ board. Essentially this means we focus on our priorities as a team on Monday so everyone is clear on what we are working on and we can sign post any areas of help needed. On a Friday we run a ‘celebrate’ session where we appreciate what we have achieved as individuals and as a team.
This makes us all feel like we are in things together rather than just running off on our individual projects and ensures, we feel a sense of progress and achievement as a team.
Schedule meaningful conversation time
There is a time to be transactional and get things done and there’s also a time to really tune in with the people you work with on a more human level. We like to do this via scheduling lunch when we are physically together or doing virtual lunches together when we are not together.
Have a go at one or all 3 and let us know how you go!
To your health and happiness,
Founder & Head Coach
P.S. Here are 3 ways we can help you personally or, the people within your company, take advantage of what’s coming: