Now more than ever, remote companies large and small are having to reassess their approach to productivity. With the onset of current global events, an increasing number of companies having to go remote, and the rapid growth of some sectors during this time of crisis, remote work companies have to make an increase in productivity a priority.
However, that mission looks different for every company, and the success depends on whether you and your team address the factors that impact productivity.
It’s no secret that soft skills like trust and organization play a huge role in improving productivity, and today the spotlight is going to be on socialization. Social relationships in the workspace are significant to increasing productivity and reducing workplace dissatisfaction.
A study by LinkedIn found that 46 percent of workers believe friendships with coworkers make them happier. Consequently, happiness and satisfaction are known to be positively correlated with engagement and productivity.
So, if you see productivity dip, improving social wellness in the workspace can be the factor that makes things like trust, organization, and collaboration work.
Socialization May Be the Answer to Your Company’s Workplace Issues
Today, we focus a lot on facilitating opportunities for collaboration and workplace communication. However, we sometimes fail to emphasize the importance of social skills at work. For your employees to work as a team effectively, they have to know and feel comfortable with one another.
Understanding each other’s strengths and drawbacks as well as the unique experiences everyone brings to the table can only happen when social relationships in the workspace are given the room to grow. These moments make it more likely for your staff to come together as a team.
Your staff’s ability to work well as a team directly impacts workflow. A lack of opportunities for workers to get to know one another on a deeper level can prevent the trust from growing, which can also cause productivity to fade. This lack of socialization can also lead to consistent conflict, office politics, and distrust.
So, if you are looking to answer questions like:
- What is workspace socialization?
- Why is socialization important?
- How does socialization contribute to employee engagement?
Check out steps you can take below to answer these inquiries and effectively increase socialization and social wellness in the workspace.
Six Reasons Why Socialization is the Answer to Most Workplace Problems
When employees are given the option to socialize with colleagues, they are in a better position to trust and collaborate with them. Humans are social creatures, and even at the beginning of time, we have depended on one another to accomplish goals: whether it be hunting for food or developing a new software solution.
Ultimately, you can improve productivity by helping your employees improve their social relationships in the workspace.
For a helpful look into why this approach can help you address most workplace problems, read on.
It can increase trust – For most people, they feel higher levels of trust with someone when they have had time to socialize with them. Even if you may not agree on everything, getting to know them helps you understand their perspective, which also increases trust. Team trust can then lead to higher levels of productivity. You can help your remote team with this by doing things like adding chat channels for fun or social outlets. You can also give team members time during the week to bond through virtual conferencing events like lunch-and-learns and standup meetings.
It increases engagement – Data by Gallup has shown that many professionals around the globe are disengaged. One of the ways to reverse this trend is by encouraging socialization. How does socialization contribute to employee engagement? Again, humans are social creatures, and we are more engaged with things we know (and this includes people). Ultimately, engagement is an indicator of productivity, and increasing socialization can have a positive impact on this factor. Also, during this current time of COVID-19, engagement strategies allow teams that may be scattered due to the current pandemic to engage with one another outside of work.
Opens the lines of communication – Employees have a variety of personalities, increasing the amount of time they are around each other can help them understand their differences and work through them to address miscommunications and improve workflow. However, socializing with colleagues can only happen when employees feel comfortable enough to communicate with one another. So, use technology and other remote tools to facilitate effective communication methods among your staff.
Increases satisfaction – As indicated by the LinkedIn study above, workers are happier and more content when they can interact and build relationships with others. This positivity can trickle down to how they approach their work and can further motivate them. Ultimately, social relationships in the workspace can lead to greater satisfaction. This, in turn, can increase engagement, decrease workplace conflict and apathy, and then ultimately improve productivity.
Decreases stress – Some studies have shown that socializing with colleagues can reduce stress, which also has a positive impact on productivity. Situations that bring about isolation, loneliness, and silos can make workers feel as if everything is on their shoulders. These negative scenarios could ultimately lead to burnout. Therefore, it is crucial that you keep an eye on remote employees and consistently seek feedback about employee workloads and collaboration.
Promotes team building – As the famous saying goes, there is no “I” in team. Your workers can accomplish more together than apart. Encouraging them to get to know each other makes it easier for them to work as a team. Again, social wellness in the workspace promotes a feeling of camaraderie and a “we-are-in-this-together” attitude. Team building also reveals the importance of social skills at work since workers need to have experience with skills like communication and teamwork, which can help solve other workspace issues.
Socialization Can Help Solve the Issue of Low Productivity
Productivity isn’t just about workflows, talent, and workplace policies. Improving productivity depends on how well you can encourage your team to work together. Healthy socialization allows your team to connect based on what they have in common and capitalize on their differences.
To get started, you need to answer the question of “what is workspace socialization?” for your own team. What does this process look like specifically for your staff? The tips above can help you to create a strategy to mobilize your team to work better together and improve productivity for the long-term.