A happy office is more likely to be a productive office, and will increase employee satisfaction within their position.  However, interoffice competition and arguments are all too common in today’s workplace environment – with clashing personalities, opinions and preconceived notions, it’s not hard to understand why this frequently occurs.  Here are five easy ways to begin to promote communication and team work with in your office.

  1. Establish defined and clear-cut goals.  When you establish a set of goals for your department or office, your team members will know exactly what they are working towards.  Whether you want to increase sales by 10% or provide 100% customer satisfaction, having a common goal all employees are striving to meet will promote forward progress and camaraderie when the goal is finally met.
  2. Take time to listen to your team members by holding regular meetings.  Use the meetings to allow each employee to present the successes and failures associated with their daily duties with an uninterrupted voice, and truly listen to the information they introduce.  Your employees will not only feel more involved with the accomplishments of the business, they will also have an opportunity to ask for help, or for input from someone outside of the projects and responsibilities they manage.  This can lead to a better solution for everyone, including the clients you serve.  Additionally, require all participants to be involved with the meeting by bringing prepared information they have collected prior to the meeting.
  3. Encourage employees to share information with one another.  Two heads are better than one, and a working environment that supports a collective genius will deter an employee from withholding information for influence.  You can support this by setting aside time for cross-training employees, alternating roles and responsibilities of your employees or partnering employees to complete a project together.  Again, require participation from each employee, whether it be questions about the cross-training, or shared or equal responsibilities with group projects.  You will find that this will open the lines of communication between employees since they will have to initiate discussions on skills needed to complete the task or project.
  4. Reward your entire  team.  When your team works together  to complete a common goal, let them know!  It can be something small, such as donuts for breakfast, or pizza for lunch, but rewarding good behavior is the best way to ensure this same pattern will be followed in the future.
  5. Create bulletins to keep everyone updated on changes.  If your department sees a lot of changes from week to week, sending emails may not be the best way for your employees to keep track of all the updates.  Create a weekly, or monthly, bulletin that your employees can file and reference.  These bulletins can include changes in policies, guidelines, and requirements your employees will need to complete their job properly, as well as important notes from your meetings, and important dates, such as employee birthdays, anniversaries, and office closings.  Ensuring your employees are ‘in-the-know’ will make them feel included and will foster an open-door policy at work.

There are plenty of additional ways for you to cultivate open communication and teamwork within your office, whether it is planning out of work gatherings, or conducting team-building exercises.   Whatever you do, ensuring your staff enjoys working with one another will pay off in the long run.

What do you like to utilize for promoting teamwork at your business?  What have you tried that did not work?  We want to know, so comment below with your tips!

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