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Igniting Workplace Connections

Did you know that the average person spends 90,000 hours at work over the course of their lifetime? That is a large chunk of our lives that we spend with our co-workers, and our relationships with them play a significant role in our own health. In fact, psychologist Shawn Achor’s research has shown that social support has as much effect on life expectancy as smoking, high blood pressure, obesity, and regular physical activity. During the pandemic, our relationships with co-workers were disrupted, we connected less, and silo-ed more.

Recently, the Michael Schwartz Library at Cleveland State University held an all-staff day to bring co-workers together to reconnect after pandemic disruptions. Led by Michelle Bradley of OhioNet’s Unlimited Possibilities Consulting Services, the day was spent playfully learning about what makes for high-quality connections in the workplace, along with the importance of creating those connections with one another. The day culminated in teams re-designing several library routines to incorporate small changes intended to increase the quality of connections and with individuals challenging themselves to choose small interactions to try out and reflect on.

Could you make time to do a five-minute favor for someone you work with each week? How about inviting someone you don’t get to interact with much for a coffee break? Even micro-movements like this can help ignite workplace connections. Interested in learning more about creating high-quality connections in your organization? Contact Michelle Bradley at [email protected].  

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