All employees (present and potential) must exhibit a strong ability to “hang”.
Imagine if that was a real prerequisite for employment or a universal understanding between management and staff. Well, for many non-traditional workplaces it already is. The key is to clarify what that means within your own company culture, after all, “hanging out” like “fun” is very subjective. So let me first start by explaining what we mean by “the ability to hang here at Hyuna.”
For us, that means finding an individual who possesses a willingness to put a bit more effort in getting to know the person who sits next to them every day – beyond standard watercooler talk. Including anything from company limes, oceanfront staff appreciation days, friendly “football” matches, and even the occasional impromptu mannequin challenge.
Although attendance was encouraged, it was never something that myself or stakeholders positioned as mandatory. No company mandate delivered, no official memo sent. “Forced” fun tends to defeat the purpose. In fact, Hyuna’s “after work’ initiatives are employee driven. And as unpremeditated as our unofficial rule was initially, we have continuously reaped the rewards from such external interactions. Some of the benefits we have experienced have become invaluable to both our bottom line and our team members.
Benefits and bottom line you say? Do tell.
Here are just some of the ways out of office activities have positively affected Hyuna as a workplace:
1. ENHANCED COLLABORATION
Casual settings provide the best way to become familiar with team members as a “person,” not just as a “colleague,” one of our managers put it best “It facilitates discovering common interests… which in general lead to friendships. Sharing ideas freely and collaborating with a friend is just easier than with a stranger. And of course, it’s more pleasant. Plus, most people tend to go the extra mile for people they already know and like.”
2. COMFORT BREEDS BETTER COMMUNICATION BETWEEN PEOPLE
We’ve found that employees who interact with each other off the clock, communicate better on the job. It also provides the opportunity for employees and management collectively to get on the same page, in achieving overall company goals. Founder and CEO of Dashed, Phil Dumontet agreed that his coworkers who “hang” together outside of work became closer and more comfortable with each other. Which by extension allows for a freer, more natural flow of communication, brainstorming and creative thinking. Moreover, they hold each other more accountable and are open to providing—and receiving—constructive feedback.
3. A WONDERFUL WORK CULTURE
Improved communication and better team dynamics (attributed to afterwork bonding), has a positive effect on the overall workplace culture. An organization which places a high value on employee motivation and building strong bonds will be considered more appealing to existing employees and quality candidates. Hyuna’s team can attest to this, first hand. Although productivity is connected to many factors, employees who are happy and motivated, tend to have higher productivity rates. As a team builds relationships and engages with one another, they, in turn, motivate each other into giving their best. Work is reflective of the team as a whole, and everyone feels that sense of responsibility to ensure that his/her work isn’t just good – but great!
Accountability of this kind is fostered through positive work relationships, cultivated both in and out of the office. Simply put, from a psychological standpoint, specific practices are directly attributed to productivity. In a 2011 research article published in the Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, Cameron and his co-authors found workplaces that exhibited the following “positive practices” excelled in their performance:
- Caring for, being concerned about and maintaining responsibility for colleagues as friends.
- Avoiding blame and forgiving mistakes.
- Inspiring one another at work.
- Treating each other with respect, gratitude, trust and integrity.
Positive workplace approaches such as these are more likely to be achieved when employees have established relationships, which are separate and distinct from the office. It requires a little extra effort, but for Hyuna it means a chance to link up!
So, do you think you can “hang”?
Hyuna International Ltd is an online media distribution business that owns and operates subscriber based multimedia content platforms. These platforms distribute digital content such as movies, music, games and e-books. Our goal is to provide a unique experience in a progressive and innovative way.