Employees require occasional breaks from the monotonous activities of the day-to-day workplace from time to time. The best way to ensure a productive workplace is to encourage employee bonding and engagement at work.

The workplace of today has become smaller, technologically advanced, and less personal, which has made it hard to connect with colleagues. Most people spend their time in meetings, emails, and other forms of communication. Technology can enable office life to be more efficient, but the transition has sidelined our need for face-to-face interactions.  In this technology-dominated work environment where employee interactions happen primarily over the digital media, we need proactive measures to encourage employee bonding are required to ensure a happy and productive workplace.

What is Employee Bonding?

Essentially, employee bonding is the act of bringing people together. From bosses who wish to get to know their employees more to friends who wish to share meals together, employee bonding can be done for any reason.

The process of employee bonding involves establishing relationships with each other, forming friendships within the organization, and learning about the company culture. It is an important component of human resources management practice.

Employee bonding, for example, occurs through engagement activities like company events, birthday celebrations, team-building activities, and voluntary engagement, such as informal talks among colleagues over lunch.

Why is team bonding important?

A good rapport among employees leads to mutual understanding, care, and support which is highly beneficial for an organization. Employee bonding activities can reduce turnover rates and increase productivity at work.

Employees who feel connected to each other and work as a team will likely perform better than those who are forced into competition with colleagues. Hence corporate team building is important for an organization’s success.

The Best Ways to Encourage Employee Bonding at Work

Great teams are said to change the work. The foundation of a successful team is employee bonding. Consequently, what can employers do to foster employee bonding?

As a first step, create a culture that encourages bonding. Building a positive culture through team-building activities makes employees feel like they belong to the organization. The second factor is communication. Ensure that your company communicates regularly about what it is doing so that the employees understand the impact of their work on the company. The third step is to create opportunities for people to collaborate, such as any employee bonding activity from exploring an idea together to taking turns managing the cafeteria line at lunchtime. Ensure that there is a space or freedom for people to discuss sensitive or personal matters without repercussions. Find ways to motivate people beyond the workplace which can in turn increase team bonding in the workplace.

Work time can be made more social by ensuring there is a friendly component to it. Make it mandatory for the team to take daily breaks, such as lunch or coffee, and set the time for them. Employees will feel more connected to their co-workers when they feel like they’re not working alone.

How Managers Can Take employee Bonding To the Next Level

It is common for managers to spend a lot of time with their employees. Hence, a great working environment depends on good relationships between managers and their employees. To take employee bonding to the next level, managers can follow these simple tips:

  1. Provide your employees with opportunities to socialize and bond outside of work hours.
  2. Make your employees feel comfortable by connecting them with other employees who share common interests.
  3. Sharing personal stories from time to time is a good way to be open about your own life. This helps people feel more at ease with you.
  4. Make sure your words are clear when you talk to your employees, as incorrect wording can lead to workplace tension.
  5. Encourage teamwork by holding regular team-building events.

The Right Leadership Approach To Employee Bonding

The right leadership style is vital to teamwork. The leader should understand his or her team members and encourage them to bond with each other. 

Employee motivation must always be at the top of leaders’ minds. Building strong bonds among team members will allow them to get the most from them. Leadership can motivate employees to develop strong bonds by creating a culture of respect and trust, providing feedback on a continuous basis, and holding team-building events. It is crucial to design events based on the needs of their employees that also reflect the company’s values and culture.

The Best Ways to Increase Team Bonding in the Virtual Workplace

Bonding within a virtual office is especially important since it is hard to build relationships when people do not meet on a daily basis. Creating an engaging virtual workplace requires building a culture of communication and collaboration between employees.

You can use the following strategies to increase team bonding in the virtual workplace:

  • Video chat among team members
  • Organize virtual events and monthly “virtual meetings” where everyone gets together
  • Each week, have  specific virtual hours where employees can ask questions or get help from other members
  • Create an online workspace that looks like your office so employees can interact with each other

The Way Forward

You can encourage your team members and co-workers to bond by first doing it on your own and then talking to them afterward.

Creating a bond and sharing interests with someone is the first step. You can meet up on weekends or after work for coffee or play a game together. When you share these common interests, you will be more likely to bond. After you share your bond, be sure to encourage your team members and co-workers as well as come up with ideas for bonding together as well!