As some of you may or may not know I started life as a mums and daughter relationship coach. One of the things that I recognised is that women were not able to get the support of other females due to the time pressured days. Gone are the days where a company shut for lunch and the whole organisation chilled and socialised together. My mum worked in a factory and was a smoker. During the summer holidays we would go to the factory with her. There was a park near by and we would join all the women at lunch time. I remember all the women collecting together and chatting/gossiping during lunch which was at a set time and the whole factory closed at the same time. There was a local baker and we would be sent to get cakes for everyone. Gone are those days of regular coffee breaks or even cigarette breaks where large groups of co workers meet.
I really believe that no matter how technical the world gets or how small the internet makes it, we only really get that true sense of connection and worth from the face to face relationships that develop off-line.
So how scary is it that for most companies the only place where staff meet and know instantly they have something in common is the cold smoking shed. The rest of the time is staggered lunches or many part-time shifts. (not that I agree with smoking my mum died of lung cancer) but it seems to be the only thing that is left that automatically lets another human being know at work that they have something in common other than work.) I was talking to my brother-in-law and he was saying that he started smoking again because in his new company it seemed acceptable for someone to have a cigarette break but if he just went for a coffee that was wasting time. (He does not work in the UK)
I have a conversation with my own children about chat they were having with friends by text or facebook. I asked what needs to happen for you guys to pick the phone up and talk face to face. The initial response was fear. It had become to easy to ping a written answer, rather than have that meaningful albeit challenging face to face chat. I have to confess I know many people in business who ping an email rather than face the person and ask would you like to buy from me. It seems to be the way to avoid rejection. But it avoids all the other stuff, human connection, sense of being understood, allowing ourselves to be a little more open means that trust is developed. If we always have our guard up how can anyone build relationships.
Are we losing the ability as a society to connect face to face?
Where does it come from that humans having a brief break and behaving like human beings is not good for business?
What is happening for you right now in business, do you have regular breaks and chats with people in the same situation as you either co-workers or other self-employed people?
If not what would you like to have happen?
Thank you for Listening