By Ayiga Patrick Obita; 25th June 2019

Every single day, we are provided with wonderful situations of connections at our workplace. It is how we use these situations that our connectors can be meaningful or not. Therefore, what is a workplace connector? This is an event or environment in which all the team members find a sense of belonging and purpose to work towards achieving the common goal which has brought them at that workplace.This term is used mostly in conflicts situations as an avenue in which people can come together to overcome their differences in order to coexist harmoniously.

The workplace is no difference from the community setup as it composed of people from different backgrounds, race, religions, cultures, academic backgrounds, experiences, etc. These differences are a prerequisite of disharmony in the workplace and it thus needs a conscious approach to overcome these through developing workplace connectors.

The issue is, how do we look at our workplaces? Are they places that connect us or not

Inclusive Meaningful Meetings.

Many employees feel left behind and isolated because they never are part of the meetings that take place in the workplace. As a result, they will start grumbling how they are not important and this will eventually show in their output. A disgruntled staff is one who becomes disengaged and they affect the productivity of not only themselves but also those of the whole team.

In a workplace, the output of one person is an input for the next level employee and vice versa. When the productivity of someone in that chain is not good, then the whole chain upwards and downwards is affected.
To ensure that everyone not only feels, but are part of the meetings, involve them to increase their self worth and esteem and in so doing, you are creating a powerful connector.
Note that these meetings need to be effective if you are to ensure that they are a wonderful avenue of connecting amongst the staff.

Collective Decision Making.
Staff need to be part and parcel of the major decisions that usually affect them. They are better off providing the solutions to the challenges that they are going through and in fact, they will be able to ensure that they adapt to the change process faster than if they were not involved from the inception of the decision.

This is about ownership of the outcomes from the decisions that are made and hence the need for their involvement. Staff yearn to be part of the decisions that affect them and why not let them be part for you to have a meaningful connection.

Collective eating / meals Time and Place.
Eating a meal as a team is one of the best connectors at the workplace. In most offices, workplaces or organisations, this is something that is lacking. These offices, workplaces or organisations might have kitchens in which tea or mealsare prepared, though without a common place and time for eating as a team.

As a result, everyone picks their tea or good and go sit and eat from their tables. Others, will have these brought for them instead. Whereas if the team had a common eating area, then they could be used by the team members to get to know one another.

As a Manager or Leader of you need to be intentional in ensuring that you have a space that your team uses for eating and a definite time set aside. This will help them to get to know one another better in creating a bond that will be able to spur performance because members have become friends. As a Leader or Manager, you will have staff getting freer with you and hence they will share with you what they might be struggling with in their work or even get ideas that can be useful in improving productivity.

Celebrations or Sorrows.
A team that is involved in the celebrations or sorrows of each other, stays, grows and moves together. This team will be supportive as well when it comes to work. They will be able to ensure that their team mates don't fail, but succeed such that they celebrate together.

For this to be meaningful,you don't need to have a few people participating, but the whole team. The whole team shows that there is unity, than when a few do take place.

Fun games have a lot of benefits for the individuals as well as for the team. These games should be enjoyable by everyone if it is to be of value.

Games create team bonding, relaxing, team work, getting it know others personally and up close, seeing the potential in others, seeking for support, knowing the likes and dislikes of someone, etc.This is a sure way of connecting with the team members. What games do you think that the team can play or be involved in?

In most workplaces, the top Managers are usually assigned or given motor vehicles to ease their movements in executing their duties.

Whereas this is good for them, it can be a disconnect or connector in how it is used. If the the person takes it as a personal property that they can't give lifts to all the others without any strings attached and allow others use for office work, then it will be a separator.

Give lifts to your team members who might not have their own vehicles and surely, you will easily connect with them and build a healthy work environment.

There is nothing that can bring about faster connecting than when having a good time merry making, eating, drinking, listening and dancing to music.

Most people are wired to having fun and this is one avenue that can do so. In such a setup, there is more getting to know one another in an informal set-up where the titles and formalities are usually left in the offices πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚. More fun parties are sure connectors for the workplace.

Language used.This is a very important issue at the workplaces. Others who don't understand a language that the others are speaking might think that they are backbiting them, worse off if they are cracking jokes and laughing. Therefore, not speaking the same language that everyone understands will be a disconnect,and this means that everyone has to use the official medium of communication.

As a Manager, you need to be concerned in ensuring that you have numerous opportunities for staff to connect with one another than disconnecting. This has to be an intentional practice if you will have a workplace which is conducive for the staff to sustain high performance.

Please do not forget to share with others whom you think this can be of value for them as well as getting back with your feedback on the article.

Ayiga Patrick Obita;

The Manager Resource Centre, you one stop centre for simple, practical and timely solutions toyour management challenges or problems. Contact us for your specialised management solutionon 0776521701 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Note that the book "CONVERSATIONS OF MANAGERS" is with us now. It's a book that will enhanceyour management journey as your golden reference manual to ease your daily decision makingthrough the experiences from other Managers. The book is for you a Manager or an aspiring one tohelp you overcome the obstacles you face or might encounter.

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By Ayiga Patrick Obita; 19th November 2018

Any company, organisation or institution is started by an idea from one person. This idea is or was later shared with the others for it to become a reality. This therefore means that you, the Principle (owner / founder) will have to get others on board as employees (agents) in ensuring that that idea that you had bears fruits.

Imagine, as you slept, you had the idea that you have to get to your office very early in the morning. Therefore, as you set out in the morning, you ignite your car and the battery is low, hence the car cannot start. You are momentarily stuck. You then decide to get to one of your neighbours if they have not yet left to come to your rescue by jump starting your car. Or you might wait on the roadside and stop any person driving past to come and help you out. 

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By Ayiga Patrick Obita; 16th November 2018

We have known why standards matter, after which, developed standards that work for everyone and it is being implemented. If you have done these stages well, then you should be smiling inwardly due to the satisfaction you are realising. However, to not only smile inwardly, but laugh outwardly for the rest to see what the standards you have developed is causing, you have to review and monitor the standards.

Reviewing should be a periodic exercise that is done by the people that the standards govern. These are the ones that have their work and actions checked by the standards in order to perform. However, it is also another story to be told that once a standard has been developed, very few if any do go back and intentionally review the performance.

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By Ayiga Patrick Obita; 5th November 2018

If you have been following my posts of recent, you should know that this is the third article I am writing concerning standards. After you have known why standards matter and how to develop standards that work for everyone, then you are left with the actual work of ensuring that these standards are now implemented.

This is because if they are not implemented, then there is nothing tangible to say about the standards than it being a document. As a Manager or Leader, it is your task to ensure that the standards are implemented and everyone is following. This gives you a situation of how is it going to be done.

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 By Ayiga Patrick Obita; 29th October 2018

This is a follow up article from the first that was written spelling out the importance of standards in the article "Why I hate standards? Do you too?" Thus, if we now know that standards are important in our work and life, then the next thing is then how do we come up with one that works for everyone?

Oftentimes, standards are made which are in place to serve the interests of a few people instead of the rest of the team and as such they have instead led to a retrogression than progress. Some of these people think that these shall never affect them, yet they are very wrong. Just like the saying that, "Power is so powerful that it is powerless". This means that there will be a time that you will have no power and authority and that the standards you set will come back to haunt you. Is that what you want to have even long when you are out of your powerful position? I don't think so.

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By Ayiga Patrick Obita; 25th October 2018

In this world, everything and whatever is done has got standards, either formally set or not. Others are written or unwritten, spoken or unspoken, seen or unseen, felt or unfelt, etc. I don't know which side you fall or have observed in your career or life.

A story is told of a new staff who after joining, was perturbed why the office would be on air conditioner at all the time instead of having the windows opened for fresh air. There was no standard written that was showing that no windows were to be opened though silently, that was the standard. So, this new staff one day opens the windows and the next thing he received was a terminated letter for having violated the office standard.

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By Ayiga Patrick Obita; Thursday 11th October 2018

Most times, new beginnings come with a lot of excitement, especially if it is about something good. Imagine a birth of a child (ooohhhh, 11th October happens to be my birthday and I woke up to see many wishes from my social media pages, thank you all and that is sweet of you all.). The reverse is true for a bad thing.

This birthday got me thinking, when does new beginnings happen? Is it an everyday event? Or it is a onetime event that takes long to come by? Every year, we are reminded of the day we are born either through ourselves or for those that forget, like myself, by others.

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