How To Build Community In The Workplace

5 mins

When your employees feel like they're part of a community, they're happier, healthier, and m...

When your employees feel like they're part of a community, they're happier, healthier, and more engaged.

Now, as we adapt to a new, hybrid world of work, community in the workplace is crucial. If you've been wondering how to create a sense of community in your workplace lately, then check out the following ideas.

Organizations with a healthy workplace culture know that investing time and effort in nurturing the community pays off. As we discussed in last week's blog, feeling part of a community in the workplace increases belonging, helps people feel connected to their work, increases engagement, fights employees' likelihood of staying lonely, and can even improve health. And it's critical to the bottom line of any business.

There are many examples of community in the workplace that create and maintain meaningful connections between employees. It is important to be authentic and aware and to offer a variety of ways to get in touch because not all employees can get involved in the same way. For example, parents and carers can be unintentionally excluded when activities take place after the workday. Community-building activities must be accessible to both in-office and remote workers.

And if you're not sure what your employees want, just ask! Conduct some focus groups or send out a short survey to get employees' opinions on what's important to them. Also, an event alone does not create a community. All levels of leadership must participate and be visible in the activities and events you create. A large number of events without executive involvement can do more harm than good, as employees will wonder if it's okay to attend the event. You will wonder why senior management does not participate in the cultural community aspects of the company, creating an unwanted gap between employees.

Form a Volunteer Work Team

Choose a local charity, a cause important to your company's goal, or even a passionate project that an employee is involved in. Ensure there is sufficient communication prior to the event and provide t-shirts for attendees. Check out the many online volunteer opportunities.

Make the "5 Minute Catch-Up Rule" Official

It can be tempting to skip straight to the point but to foster a sense of community, we need to take at least a few minutes to realize that we're human before we're workers. Ask others how they are doing or what they did over the weekend, chat about your dogs, share hobbies, or do anything else that encourages them to engage in purposeful interactions with others.

Note that there are areas for relationships in the actual workspace

The demands of employees on the aesthetics of the workplace are evolving. Microsoft predicts that businesses will need a combination of spaces for collaboration, meetings, and focus, as well as areas that encourage casual socializing. Individuals are looking for places that foster a sense of community that working from home doesn't have. If not, they will withdraw. This is worth considering if your company values ​​personal work.

Organize fun after-work activities

A happy hour, a moonlight hike, or a shared lunch in the park are all examples of events that can be scheduled after work hours to allow employees to get to know each other better. If your business is open on weekends, consider planning activities there as well, as the supervisors can then be more flexible.

Create mentoring or peer coaching initiatives

Mentoring naturally creates a different type of bond between workers and is associated with higher job satisfaction and acceptance within the organization. Mentoring also provides much-needed support for groups that are under-represented in leadership positions, such as B. Women and people of color, thereby promoting a more diverse and inclusive community.

Pay close attention to the onboarding process

Conduct targeted, bonding events to officially welcome new employees to the neighborhood. During the first week, arrange to meet different team members for lunch or coffee, or send a personal letter from a senior executive welcoming them to the company. The aim is to give new employees the impression that they are part of a supportive team.

Provide regular recognition

People feel they have achieved something when they receive formal or informal praise, which is also a powerful motivator for employees. Recognition from peers to peers and from boss to boss can both have a positive impact on community spirit. Employee appreciation can be done in a variety of ways, from official channels to simple handwritten notes. It is crucial that it becomes an integral part of the corporate culture.

Building a Community in the Virtual Workplace

If you’ve got a virtual office with a team of remote workers, it’s still possible to build a community and create a positive working environment. Some of the best ways to do this include:

  • Regular virtual team-building experiences
  • Weekly team meetings
  • In-person social events if the team is local
  • Celebrate business wins and employees’ achievements, just as you would in an office
  • Create collaborative projects to encourage colleagues to work together

Although it can be slightly more difficult, building a strong remote team is possible, it simply takes a little more planning, organization, and online platforms to make it work. 

Our sense of belonging and purpose in life are derived from communities. Belonging to a community has benefits for everyone and more and more companies are discovering how bringing people together contributes to success. A workplace community improves our overall quality of life rather than just allowing us to clock in and go through the motions. Additionally, there are many beneficial side effects for businesses, such as increased engagement, inspiration, productivity, and retention.

But starting can be intimidating. It will take time to create a supportive work environment. Use these best practice concepts as a foundation by starting small. This makes the procedure more manageable and increases your chances of long-term success.

And the time and work spent on it were well worth it. You have an advantage over the competition if your workplace has a strong community. Additionally, a strong employer brand will help mitigate the potentially disastrous effects of the Great Resignation.

If you need to seek help or advice regarding mental health or if you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available. Call or text 988 or chat at You can also reach Crisis Text Line by texting MHA to 741741. You can also call 1-800-985-5990 or text “TalkWithUs” to 66746 at the SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline. Trained crisis workers will listen to you and direct you to the resources you need.