How To Have More Meaningful Conversations At Work
The office can quickly become a space where we only converse in business-speak. Synergy this and KPIs that - but given that we spend the majority of our lives at work, it's healthy to ensure the things we talk about have meaning beyond just business. A lot of companies are working on fostering a culture of openness, and whether you want to join in or become a trailblazer, we've shared some of the best ways to start those meaningful conversations.
Start Small (Talk)
The dreaded small talk. Commenting on the weather, the commute, or some other mundane aspect of the day-to-day - yet despite its bad rep, small talk has great benefits for mental wellbeing. Going straight in at the deep-end of a conversation can be a little intimidating, whilst taking baby steps to more meaningful discussions is easily achieved by starting small. Small talk gives snippets into the lives of your colleagues, as well as their likes, dislikes, and the kinds of people they are, which quickly leads to more interesting questions and more diverse topics that you can connect with.
Take It Outside
There's nothing like a walk in the park to get your mind off business and onto things closer to your heart. Invite a colleague on a stroll, which will not only relax you both mentally and physically, but give rise to opportunities to discover things about one another that you may not have known - such as where they've been on holiday recently, a nearby cafe that they've tried, or what they'll be up to at the weekend.
There's no better feeling than feeling heard, and by listening to what your colleagues tell you about both their personal and professional lives, you will foster a comfortable environment by asking follow up questions, and showing that you care. Whether they bought something new last weekend, or are going to visit their grandma next month, remembering these little facts will encourage unity throughout the office.
Offer to Help
Helping out can range from lending a hand with a new work project, to something more personal like helping a colleague carry their bike indoors. Offering help to your colleagues will shift what can sometimes become a distant, dog-eat-dog attitude between co-workers, to a more familial unit. Once you've started helping people will the little things, they may feel more comfortable to come to you with personal problems too - then before you know it you have a new BFF and your very own support system.
How do you connect with your colleagues? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org