Maintaining our wellbeing during this time of change is vital so we are better positioned to deal with the daily work and personal demands we have. This mini-series will discuss two main challenges we may face when working remotely along with how to overcome them.
Today we will be looking at Social connectedness and the import role it has in maintaining our wellbeing.
A big part of working in an office is the social connection with our team and wider members of the university. Each day is filled with meetings, coffee break chats, and team socialising both formal and informal. It is challenging to keep up this level of interaction and sense of belonging when working remotely. But it is possible to find new ways of maintaining this level of connectedness within your own team.
The social support we receive from work colleagues is very important for helping us deal with our daily work demands. In fact, research shows that it’s likely more effective at lessening the normal stress felt from work than social support from friends and family. Both forms of social support are important, but keeping up daily, meaningful interactions with colleagues will greatly help you to: look at work demands accurately; delegate and share work that you may have otherwise done alone; and share day-to-day successes and challenges.
What makes you feel connected to others at work?
Think about a normal work situation, what examples have you got that really emphasise the connection you feel with significant/important work colleagues?
What are some things to help maintain this whilst working remotely?
Ideas to increase and sustain our social connection:
- Informal video calls with colleagues e.g. with 30 minute “stand up” catch up with your team, or 1-2-1 with a colleague.
- Use Teams for informal messaging throughout the day.
Update your calendar with your availability, you might like to signal when it’s ok to call you for a catch-up/chat.
Use one-drive and the sharing capability to simultaneously work on documents together with colleagues.
Using teams to ask different colleagues for help, and kickstarting daily collaboration
Set up a WhatsApp group
Join Yammer groups
Set up your own social group virtually, book club, running club (where you can share photos of your run’s and progress) etc…
Can you think of any other ideas? Comment below.
See if you can try out some of the ideas above, get in touch with me on teams if you want to chat about this topic further.
Look out for the second part of this mini-series, “Rest and Recovery”, which will be coming next week.
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