The average American spends a vast majority of their day at the workplace. Having a good relationship with your coworkers is extremely important to your overall happiness. If you are in a leadership position at your workplace, you can improve everyone else’s happiness by fostering team bonding and collaboration.
By using the five main components of relational leadership — empowerment, inclusion, ethical behaviors, purposefulness, and process orientation — you can easily encourage healthy workplace bonding.
Hold A Role Swapping Day
Companies with many different departments often face the challenge of inter-departmental collaboration, whether you’re trying to encourage collaboration between team members or reign in curious employees who want to take on more tasks. After all, employees are almost always interested in what other departments do in their regular workday. Satisfy this curiosity and encourage collaboration by allowing everyone to swap roles for a day. This exercise will also foster empathy among employees, as they will see the unique challenges another department faces in addition to the more enjoyable aspects of their jobs.
Encourage A Creative Atmosphere
One of the best ways to ensure that your workplace is an enjoyable place to be is to build an atmosphere that is creative and welcoming. Team members should be able to question solutions and brainstorm ideas in a judgement-free zone. Without the fear of others shutting down their ideas, team members will think of creative and valuable solutions to the company’s most difficult problems. Provide opportunities for leadership training for every team member as well, thereby giving everyone an equal chance to reach their fullest potential.
Go To Off-Site Department Lunches
Getting employees out of their typical workplace setting and into a more social environment almost always encourages them to talk and get to know one another on a personal level. Treat departments to regular, company-paid lunches at a nice restaurant or at a more casual eatery. To pamper them even further, hire a car service to take them to wherever they’re going. Professionals spend over $300 billion on business travel in the United States every year, but this money is often well-spent on fostering valuable team bonding.
Establish Book Clubs
A great way to get team members to collaborate outside of their typical work responsibilities is by holding read-at-work book clubs. Whether the book club is open to all company members or is focused in one department, uniting the group around one book will prompt innovative discussions between team members. Every week, the book club will meet to discuss one or two chapters. Members can take turns leading the discussions, which can revolve around the content of the book as well as how the concepts in it apply to the company.
There are nearly endless possibilities for fostering team bonding and collaboration. If all else fails, simply ask your employees what kind of activities they would like to see in the workplace. By listening to everyone’s input and getting creative, you will quickly find the methods that work for your company.