Engaging the Heart to Enhance the Employee Experience
General Blogs January 21, 2014 By Ivan Cheung Staff
Last week I saw a musical that took my trip to Disney World to a whole new level, and I learned a lesson in taking my own employee experience to a whole new level. I saw "Finding Nemo - The Musical" at Disney World's Animal Kingdom theme park. Here's how it played to my heart:
- I loved the original movie, Finding Nemo
- I appreciate creative story telling. Disney's mastered the art of transforming an animated movie with no singing, into a stage act with huge puppets, live actors, and lots of singing.
- The musical reminded me of my heart-felt connection with Marlin (the wise, but overly cautious and protective fish) and Nemo (the naiive son of Marlin who is ready to take on life without boundaries). Sometimes in life, I am Marlin, and at times I am Nemo...and the interplay between the Marlin and Nemo is a microcosm of how life happens between family members, coworkers, and friends.
This got me thinking, we spend at least 40 hours a week working, and many of us enjoy our jobs already. But what if there are ways in which we can engage one another in the workplace that would take our own employee experience to a whole new level? Similar to how Finding Nemo Musical's heart connection enhanced my Disney World experience, your workplace experience will rise if there is a heart-felt connection within the company. Clarification: When I talk about "heart-felt connection", I am not referring to anything romantic between two people! I'm referring to those non-romantic things that add meaning and purpose to life. Imagine work being a place where you are not only working toward a common goal of serving your customers, but a place where you also share other passions, common interests, or causes with coworkers.
The best thing about this is that every person, regardless of role or title, can search for that heart-felt connection within your company.
- Start by examining your own interests and passions. It can be anything! Even getting tasks done can be a passion, but I bet you can find one more thing besides that. ;P
- Put feelers out there to your coworkers, to your bosses (even customers!) by engaging in small talk with the appropriate boundaries and timing. You don't want to be seen as unproductive or unprofessional. But you have to start somewhere
- Be prepared for failures and successes. All you need is one connection!
- Be open to share a heart-felt connection with someone you may not know very well and be open to exploring new interests or passions.
- Make it a habit to continue engaging the heart-felt connection with at least one other person one time per week. As humans, we can grow disinterested or tired, so it's essential that we help each other out through encourgement and reminders.
- Take it to the next level. If there are two of you who have a common connection, take action! Invite others to lunch discussions or after-work activities related to the connection.
For #1, I guarantee that you have a passion or interest. If you can't think of any, by all means, whether you're a Liferay Staff or Community Member, let's get in contact! (email me and we'll talk about it after work) I just want you to have a great employee experience at your company and finding that heart-felt connection is just one of many ways to do that.
What types of heart-felt connections has enhanced your employee experience?