The family is no longer who you spend the most time with. The necessities of today’s workplace require employees to spend the bulk of their day outside of their homes, working long extended hours. It is no surprise that employees only spend time in their homes when the sun has set. Thus, the point I am trying to drive at is that your colleagues are more important that you probably give them credit for. They are the people you eat and talk with daily, spending long hours or even doing over time together. This collegial relationship has the potential to be more than just, “Michelle, I need this File by 5pm today”. Instead of dreading it, why not try looking forward to work because you can see your colleagues to tell them of your day outside of work. If you haven’t already had a good relationship with your colleagues, take the first step and they could possibly be more than just colleagues in time to come.
If you are clueless on where to start, below are a couple of actions to contribute towards a more positive work environment for the office.
1. Carry a positive mentality to work
Beginning the day with a simple good morning and a smile on your face can go a long way towards establishing a warm cordial relationship with your colleagues. Be nice to your colleagues by offering them the casual snack to munch on. Not all heroes wear capes. Some good deeds can come in small, sometimes unnoticed gestures. But to the recipient, it could be the difference between a good day and a bad one.
2. Be approachable
For starters, a good practice would be to refrain from using your phone especially with regards to meal times in the workplace. We have a tendency of using our phones when we are bored and this just sends the wrong signal. Another simple way is to take an interest in your colleague’s life outside of the workplace. Talk to him/her when you would rather just be surfing the net. Understand him/her as more than just an employee, get to know the person you are sitting next to.
3. Step out of your comfort zone
There are various ways to do this in the workplace. Team building activities are commonly done to help companies take a break from work, and most importantly to break the ice between co-workers to create a friendly work environment. So the next time you participate in a team building activity, be open to enjoying the experience with others whom you rarely interact with. Do not be afraid to use this opportunity to mingle around with the colleagues who you rarely talk to or those who are a tad fiercer in the office. Of course, you do not have to limit this to solely during team building activities, it is just made easier to do in team building activities; you can do this in meal times or during work time. And if you are interested in ideas for the next team building activity, click here for a comprehensive selection of activities.