Updated: May 9
If 22 years of struggling to run a respectable business has taught me anything, it’s that cooperation plays a huge part in our success.
Each and every day, all of us get up and bring to work whatever is on our minds. Hopefully, if we trust each other, we help each other solve personal challenges. Then we move on to fulfill whatever we’ve signed up for as employers and employees.
If employees are lucky, their organization has a hiring practice that filters out people who don't value cooperation and collaboration. They've recruited individuals who enjoy being mentored and contributing to a functional existing culture.
Employers need to put themselves in a new hire’s shoe. They should ask themselves what challenges their new team members are likely to encounter first. Who will they will be interacting with the most? It’s a good idea to designate someone to befriend the new person and help them acclimate.
Keep in mind, that, according to research, the most effective mentoring relationships are voluntary and informal. Supervisors and executives can be influential role models, but only when they are able to truly listen before offering guidance.
A pleasant working environment is also key to setting a cooperative tone. Employers should consider the physical space that their employees must work in every day. Is there fresh air? Are there windows and sunlight? Do their workers get enough breaks to feel healthy and refreshed? Is there a comfortable break room where workers can socialize a little? Are healthy snacks on hand?
Happier, more comfortable employees tend to stick around longer. They’re also more likely to bring fresh innovation and creativity to their work projects.
The financial insurance company Unum has specified 30 different ways that employers can help employees to feel happy and engaged. One important way is to make sure they know that their work is important and meaningful. Not just for the company, but important to the world in general. Employers should talk about this from time to time. They should articulate the ultimate positive impacts of what their workers are doing, with genuine appreciation workers can feel.
It’s important to cultivate an atmosphere of positive thinking that will extend outside of the workplace. That means the positivity will inure to the wellbeing of workers and their families. This will benefit everyone concerned – business owners, shareholders, customers, and employees. In times of stress and challenge, this mindset will promote resilience and agility. It will promote a much greater ability to recover from harm or setbacks.