Socializing inside or outside of the office used to be frowned upon by many employers, and often, employees just want to head home after a long day at work. However, when it comes to improving teamwork in the workplace, developing relationships outside of work may be the key to success.
Think about it, rock stars spend just about every waking moment with their band. They play together, practice together, eat together, and live together for extended periods. Rock stars create relationships with one another. They are not just people that make music together, they are a family.
Marvelless Mark® tells his clients that if you want your team to create rockstar results, give them the opportunity to socialize.
As a manager, you want your employees to work together as a well-oiled machine. When they are given the chance to get to know each other as friends and not just coworkers, it opens a world of possibilities.
1) Employees form actual friendships and are more willing to support each other.
2) Problems are often solved during "off-time."
3) Team members learn about each other's personalities and better understand how to navigate their relationships.
4) Employees learn from each other and form unofficial mentorships or masterminds which help them move further in their career.
5) They work better as a team and have fewer issues.
Depending on the average age of your staff, creating a social environment may be even more important than you think. Millenials expect an environment of collaboration and crave the "after hours" socialization.
While an impromptu pizza party can always inspire conversation in the office, there are a number of ways that you can create the "band" atmosphere for your business rock stars.
1) Incentivize carpooling. Suggest that employees who live close to one another take turns driving the work. Stress that it improves the environment, and offer a reward for doing so. This can be monetary, time off, or entry into a contest to win prizes.
2) Create communal spaces that employees want to be in. If your break room is dark, dank, and depressing, no one is going to want to be there. Design a space that is comfortable, well lit, and encourages employees to dine together. If space permits, create a space outdoors as well. Your employees will spend more time together and they'll reap all the health benefits that nature has to offer.
3) Encourage employees to exercise together on breaks. A 20 minute walk can clear the brain, fuel the soul, and spark a deeper friendship. Depending on the size of your company or department, you may even offer workout classes that employees can join throughout the day.
4) Schedule happy hours or dinners once a month and invite employees to get together outside of the work environment.
5) Host family events like a picnic, a day at the park or zoo, or an outing to a sporting event. Not only will your employees get to know each other better, but they'll also get to know spouses and children and potentially form even stronger bonds. If you choose to do this, be sure to make the day about fun and socialization, not work. There is nothing worse than being taken to a fun, beautiful location... and being stuck in a conference room all day talking about work.
When it comes to working together as a team, take a nod from the successful rock stars and become more than just coworkers. Become a family.
"Great things in business are never done by one person, they are done by a team of people.” - Steve Jobs
Mark Kamp® aka Marvelless Mark® works with organizations who want their teams to achieve immediate rock star results. A Keynote Speaker/Entertainer/Author, Husband, Father, and child of God, his primary message, “Opportunity Rocks®” gives attendees a fresh new perspective on Sales, Marketing, and Employee Performance. Fun and engaging, Mark combines the success secrets of your favorite rock stars with just the right amount of entertainment to transform your employees into business rockstars. Learn more at www.OpportunityRocks.net.