Office meetings are often portrayed as boring and a waste of time, but anyone who facilitates them knows they are anything but that.
American fashion designer, Eileen Fisher, starts off each of her meetings with what We!™ calls “connection before content.” This means that a small bond should be formed between a group before the focus turns to work and production. This way, the group becomes more motivated and each individual better understands their role within the group. In Fisher’s case, each member pairs up and asks each other one question. The person who asks the question sits and listens to the other person’s response for two minutes, while the other person shares for two minutes. Then, the roles reverse.
The purpose of this activity may seem obvious, but it helps in several different ways.
1.) Create Conversations that Matter
Regardless of the question is asked, an opportunity for genuine interaction presents itself. We!™ focuses on conversations that matter because they teach people important information about each other. This helps to establish more humanity and a willingness to see each other’s perspectives when working towards a common goal.
2.) Connect Differently
Often times, connection in the workplace is trivial, only regarding what a person is doing or could be doing. By communicating about something personal, bonds are formed between employees that create a more positive atmosphere.
3.) Positive Work Space
Starting with a meaningful connection between employees and encouraging a more positive environment helps to foster a workplace that is worth showing up to.
Fostering this environment creates more efficient employees. By focusing on connection before content, meetings can become something that employees look forward to rather than dread.