by Pamela DeCoste
In honor of Administrative Professional’s Day, Boxed would like to recognize and thank all administrative professionals who work tirelessly to keep their companies running smoothly and their colleagues happy. Finding happiness at work can come in different ways. For some, developing a new friendship can make all the difference, while for others it may be the free snacks and amazing coffee offered in the office kitchen. Who doesn’t love a great 2:00 p.m. pick-me-up?
Here are 5 Easy Ways to Foster Employee Connectedness. Having a well-stocked office kitchen or pantry with an array of favorite snacks, beverages, and little surprises can go a long way in encouraging employees to take breaks together and brainstorm over a cup of coffee. This is often when they strike gold with creative insights that would rarely spark without the input of others to build upon ideas.
- Liven up the office kitchen. A large table and clean space can do wonders to bring employees out from behind their computers and into a communal space to take a break together. Encouraging employees to eat together can be beneficial for not only the company but also the individual employee. The New York Times reported that eating in front of a screen leads to increased calorie consumption, and thus weight gain.
- Start meetings with fun. Encourage employees to take the first few minutes of all internal employee meetings to discuss anything but work (or the weather) so that they can carve out time to learn about each other. Rather than diving into a discussion about quarterly sales goals, employees can learn something new about their colleagues and potentially shared interests outside of work.
- Carve out creative spaces. According to Adobe’s State of Create 2016 report, everyone values creativity, and younger generations place a premium on it. With the incoming workforce valuing creativity as much as they do, offices should offer multi-use spaces that can foster brainstorms and help to get the creative juices flowing.
- Host lunch and learn sessions. Commit to growing and developing employees, and give them the opportunity to learn new skills and gain experience during company-wide or department-wide lunch and learn gatherings. Sixty-minute employee-led professional development sessions can be a great, cost-effective way to have an employee share his or her expertise in a certain area while honing his or her presentation and communication skills.
- Ask employees for their input on perks. Everyone loves perks at work—and they are even better when you can weigh in on the types of food, water, and coffee that’s offered. Encouraging employees to share their feedback can also help foster a feeling of ownership at work, which is beneficial for everyone.