6 ways to grow community at work


Last Thursday I wrote very briefly about growing a sense of community at work, and I asked what you think is the best way to do it. I thought I’d post your suggestions today:

  1. Steph suggested we should make sure we notice people and mention things we appreciate about them. In workplaces it can be easy for people to go unnoticed. If we consistently notice people, we’ll create community over time.
  2. Dylan was saying he’s just started a new job, and he’s just been looking out for opportunities for informal, spontaneous coversation.
  3. Steve suggested letting community just happen organically. He said he’d seen bosses try to enforce community from above, and it never works. He was telling us about an attempt one boss made to get everyone to cheer at the end of meetings, which sounded kind of awkward…
  4. Lucas kept it simple: ‘Humans being nice to other humans!’
  5. Jacqui’s suggestion was simple as well, but I think there’s also a lot of depth to it. She suggested sharing food, which is actually something I was talking with some students about yesterday. I think sharing food is really good for developing a sense of community and mutuality, because it’s a reminder of our shared dependence on food and on the land that provides it.
  6. Shae was saying he has no idea how to develop community at work because he’s lucky to work with someone who is already one of his best friends. They’re both already part of the same community in a lot of ways. What he was describing reminded me of the fact that before industrialisation, that’s more what work was like. People would work locally, often out of their homes alongside family. Because of industrialisation many of us now travel out of neighbourhoods to work with people that we don’t see except at work. I think this means we have to be more intentional about growing community. If we have the opportunity to work in our local communities, it can male it more straightforward.

If you have any more suggestions, please feel free to keep adding them!

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