Do Your Coworkers Need To Like One Another?
How important is it that your staff get along?
Admit it or not, everyone wants to work with people they like. But how important is it to the company [and the brand at large] if the employees get along with one another?
To us, socializing with your coworkers at work and outside of work is crucial to good internal collaboration. Why? Because you’re relating to them as human beings, which makes it easier for you to trust each other, rely on each other, and produce great work together. We would also venture to say that good workplace relationships make a happier, more productive office.
As humans, we’re made to seek out connections with one another. That’s why a lot of modern brands will bill themselves to the public as a “team” or a “family.” That’s because work is where we spend the most hours of our day, our week, and our lifetime. It’s completely natural that we would try to forge relationships here. And in a sense, our workplace can truly be a home away from home.
Chances are, you’ve got a pretty decent range of Millennials on your staff, and that is important because it will drive your modern corporate culture. Millennials put so much emphasis on enjoying their work environment, that having a social or at least friendly relationship with their coworkers is more important than most other aspects of their job. In fact, enjoying the company of their coworkers might even be the most important thing to Millennials, besides doing fulfilling work. They’d rather work with friends than be isolated in an 8-to-5 environment.
Having a staff that enjoys spending time with one another can help foster internal trust and radiate happiness from within. Your customers, clients, and vendors can recognize when they’re doing business with a happy workplace. Also, if members of your staff have social relationships outside of work, members of the public could take notice and form opinions about the type of work environment that you are cultivating.
We recognize the challenges, though. The size of a company will 100% influence the way the staff interact. Small businesses often cultivate an informal, team environment. Bigger, corporate businesses are usually the ones where socialization is broken up into smaller groups or among departments. Here, there’s also the likely possibility that socialization is awkward, or even discouraged. It’s not easy to get everyone around the table or organize an office-wide “fun day” if you’ve got 60 people or more to wrangle. The size of the company isn’t the only obstacle for office camaraderie. Having a major age gap among your staff can also hinder everyone’s ability to get along and relate to one another. You can’t really fix the age gap issue, but you can institute a corporate culture initiative that bridges the gap. It’s all about having regular activities, a next-generation committee, and a mentoring program that brings younger generations and older generations together in a productive way that benefits the company.
An office where everyone gets along every day all day seems like an alien, unrealistic concept. But an office where people generally like their coworkers is, without a doubt, good for the brand. You want your people to feel invested, connected, and proud to be a part of the team. And in the end, we all want invested employees who have ownership of what they do and the company they work for. Good bonds can help strengthen that sensibility.
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