A year to do things differently

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People often make resolutions in the New Year, but in the present economic climate of change and uncertainty, is it really worth making things harder for yourself? After the dramatic workplace shift over the last few years, this year should be all about finding balance and reinstating more time spent – and by that I mean in real life – with people. That’s one resolution we can make that will be beneficial for all.

Social medias

It’s strange that meeting people in person, either socially or professionally, became such a big deal. With all the social distancing, remote working and ‘not mixing’, the accent during the pandemic was on the solitary. But we’re not a solitary species, we’re social animals, and it doesn’t matter if it’s in work or out and about in our leisure time, we all benefit from meeting up with people in person. In this way, we shouldn’t forget the importance of the human touch and interaction.

When it comes to work, our working relationships are often forged by our interactions and personalities. We tend to gravitate to people we like, to personalities which are like ours, and this often brings the best out of both parties. You don’t have to socialise outside of work, but it helps if you mix and collaborate well within the working environment. The phrase ‘team player’ is overused these days, to the point that it’s all but obsolete. To work within a team, you’re expected to be a team player. But it actually means much more than that in person.

Interaction and creativity

If you’re a personable, confident individual, you may find it easy to communicate your ideas and have people understand them. If you’re more socially awkward and unsure of yourself, you can still be just as good at your job, but have more difficulty getting your viewpoint across. The ideal – and this works much better in person than over the internet in an email or via Zoom – is the interaction in-person working gives you. It’s much easier to articulate ideas and discussions in person. Other factors, such as tone of voice and body language come into play, which can help people relate to others much more.

So many companies have adopted a hybrid working model, or even a ‘work from home only’ model, that some of that interaction is being lost along the way. This shouldn’t be the case, especially if you work in an industry where creativity and knowledge-sharing are part of your working day. One client has said to me that this year it is his resolution to meet me in person. This may sound absurd, but given the events and changes of the last two years, is entirely believable too.

We should take these lessons on board and make sure that if possible ’in person’ is the de facto way to meet up and communicate. Let’s make 2023 a year to do things differently.