Connecting at work

Institute Staff enjoy a sunny lunch.

When I first started working here at OHSU it took me awhile to adjust to an academic research environment. Research, like some other industries, is sometimes stereotyped as made up of a workforce focused more on working solo than engaging socially: Work that can’t be bothered by coffee breaks or “chatting around the water cooler.”

Of course, what we know to be true is how we feel about the teams we work with really does affect our health, well-being, productivity and turnover!  And while we all have days with our nose to the grindstone as we eat while at our computer or dodge in early and avoid the chit chat of others; we also now encourage coworkers to take the time to be part of our team. Some days a few of us might walk the few minutes together to grab that morning tea or coffee. And other days – not everyday perhaps – we take a few minutes to sit in the sun while we eat our lunch, sharing both pleasure and business.

I’m sure now, the days that I get away from my work for that time – be it 5 or 20 minutes – enhances all aspects of me, my well-being, and my ability to be successful in what I do.

What about you and your work team? What are you doing to support your workplace relationships? We’d love to know!