I spend a lot of my time speaking at events. Some of the talks I give are at conferences and galas, others at offices, community centres and schools.
It’s always interesting to go into a workplace. Even if I’m only there for an hour or so, I can usually get a really good sense of the office or team culture pretty quickly. It’s so obvious when a workplace is getting the culture right. You can tell by the way people greet each other, the way the office feels, the general energy pulsing through the space.
Just last week I gave a talk at Google and I was so blown away by the energy I felt there. Everyone seemed genuinely stoked to be a part of life at Google! It made me really think about the connection between our general wellbeing and the work we do.
It’s my belief that life is all about relationships – making genuine connections with the people around us.
I feel the most connected to myself, to the world, and to the work I do when I feel connected to the people around me. But cultivating the kind of work culture that makes you feel this way can be difficult.
Organisations like Google are masters at it, they know that it is the culture of a team that determines their success, and more than that, they know that when people feel connected to their team and to their work, they’re happier. And when people are happy, they produce better work! It’s like a big happy work-life cycle. Pretty awesome!
So how do you develop this kind of culture if you’re not Google?
Focus on building strong relationships.
Have clear values and boundaries that are upheld consistently. Give your staff and colleagues your respect, your empathy and most of all, your PASSION and ENTHUSIASM.
Share, listen, connect. And try not to get too stressed or shitty with your colleagues when your luggage gets lost on a connecting flight in the early hours of the morning before a big event (yep, I’m guilty of that one too!).
Feel like you can’t change your work culture?
OK, here’s my other tip for making your work life a little more enjoyable:
Start your day with the task you’re dreading most. That way, the day gets better and better. It’s a tip I picked up in hospital during my bandage changes. I’d ask the nurses to start with the most painful areas first so the worst was out of the way. It meant I could manage the pain a little more easily, and my day always looked up from there.
Give it a try!
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