A Little Kindness (in the Workplace) Goes a Long Way
There is undoubtedly a plethora of workplace horror stories, recounted repeatedly, about situations in which supervisors or colleagues made remarks or gestures that disparaged, embarrassed, or even humiliated other co-workers or made them feel unappreciated. In many of these cases, the offending party (i.e. bully) would justify their actions by stating that the job had to get done and they could not worry about hurting someone’s feelings.
In situations as described above, it is quite likely that the jobs did get done, albeit with a considerable amount of reluctance, and even some contempt, and little in the way of any enthusiasm or commitment. And just to add insult to injury, so to speak, these stories usually end with some comments to the effect that the offending party took all the credit without expressing any appreciation or recognition for those who actually did the work.
Working in an office environment can indeed cause high levels of stress, short-tempered outbursts, and a tunnel vision-like focus on the work; there are deadlines to meet, sales targets to achieve, messages to send or retrieve, and a multitude of other priorities that can consume the workday. Yes, the job must get done, but that is still no excuse for the lack of kindness that seems to be more prevalent in the workplace today.
Perhaps this lack of compassion in the office is the result of an increased dependence on technology, a decline in social graces, concerns over job security, or a pervasive mindset of competitiveness instead of collaboration; whatever the root cause, it is not particularly healthy for the individual employees or a company as a whole. There is still a significant amount of truth to the age-old expression that a little kindness (in the workplace) can go a long way, though it may need to be revisited and rejuvenated in some circumstances.
In most cases, integrating kindness back into the office does not require a monumental attitude adjustment; just a concerted effort on the part of management and co-workers to emphasize the positive and to recognize people for what they do and contribute rather than underscoring the negative, being overly critical, or simply ignoring them altogether.
Consequently, here are some ways that co-workers and/or companies can reintroduce or revive kindness in the workplace if it seems to be lacking or perhaps has a lower priority, as recommended by the staffing specialists from Winters Technical Staffing in Toronto:
- Engage in face-to-face interactions instead of communicating via e-mail
- Make an effort to connect with/get to know colleagues across the company
- Use the phrase ‘thank you’ on a liberal basis in private and in group settings
- Consider the impact of any communication – will it be the same as its intent?
- Offer ideas, knowledge, or assistance to co-workers struggling with a deadline
- Organize and/or participate in team-building activities to facilitate togetherness
- Ask for, and listen to, input and suggestions on company plans and/or direction
- Applaud people for their accomplishments and encourage others to do the same
- Recognize the strengths of others and ask them to share their knowledge or skill
- Avoid internal competitions that can incite dislike or animosity among co-workers
- Allow others the opportunity to lead a project or meeting and support their efforts
Many people might spend almost as much time at work as they do at home; because the former often provides many comforts in the latter, it is easy to see how some individuals could get caught up in their jobs at the expense, i.e.: the neglect, of their co-workers. However, the concerted effort to integrate kindness into the office can/will create a more pleasant work environment and less stressful lifestyle overall.
Recruiting Specialists Can Help with Integrating Kindness into the Workplace
Companies looking to create and integrate a culture of kindness and compassion in their workplace should include such traits as part of their recruiting and hiring practices; that is, focus on finding individuals who have the right cultural fit for their work environment.
This can be accomplished with the support of the recruitment professionals from Winters Technical Staffing in Toronto. These experienced staffing specialists can collaborate with employers to ensure that an emphasis on cultural fit is incorporated into the interviewing process and that all responses are assessed appropriately as part of any decision-making and candidate selection.
To learn more about the scope of recruiting and interviewing services provided by the consultants at Winters Technical Staffing, go to services.
Contact Winters Today
For expert advice and guidance on integrating kindness and compassion into the office or workplace, call the recruitment professionals from Winters Technical Staffing today at 416-495-7422 or contact us to schedule a no-obligation consultation with one of our staffing specialists.