No more Monday coffee breaks with Sean? Chitchats and loud jokes at the office between tasks? Lunch breaks at your favorite Italian place around the corner? One universal worry many of us have been facing is the lack of social interaction and the effects it will have on our well-being. How can we still maintain a sense of community from afar? There are ways to overcome this and I’m here to walk you through some.
Life-hack 1: Incorporate virtual coffees
If you can’t enjoy your coffee break at the office, why not do it from home? This is a great way to still keep up our ordinary routines and make this period of time feel a little more normal. It could either be a spontaneous thing or an organized social activity where people across teams can have a 5 min chat on zoom where everyone gets three standup questions to answer to share with the group. It doesn’t have to be a coffee, why not turn it into a brown paper bag lunch session or weekly after works? The opportunities are endless!
Life-hack 2: Organize inclusive check-ins by using online apps
Depending on the size of your team, there are ways to check in regularly so that everyone feels like they’re being recognized. Even if you don’t have the time to check in one-on-one, there are online tools like Mentimeter out there to help to assist you in creating live polls, Q&A sessions, quizzes, etc. By using these types of apps, you can easily check in with your team in a way that makes everyone feel included.
Life-hack 3: Work out together (alá quarantine style)
We don’t need to say bye to work-life-balance just because we’re now working from home. One way to tackle this new temporary reality is to find ways to make sure we still do whatever we can to feel good inside. Yes, it takes a little more discipline, therefore, doing it together might spark the motivation a little. There are a ton of yoga teachers, PTs, and gyms around the world opening up for online classes. Don’t forget to check internal talents – you might even have someone on your team who wants to organize an online work-out?
Life-hack 4: Don’t let anything be unsaid
There’s no such thing as over-communicating. Getting a point across virtually can be a little more difficult as a big part of communicating, in general, is nonverbal. A lack of communication, on the other hand, can make people feel disconnected and not seen. If you’re finding yourself trying to keep the team spirit high when having to self-distance, make sure to remain healthy feedback based approach and add weekly/monthly check-ins to effectively gather everyone for discussions. It’s easier to feel connected when everyone is updated on the latest and know what is going on in the team at large.