Beyond income, what do you give your employees? Benefits packages, paid vacation time, a Christmas bonus, a personal office? Those things are well and good, but what do you provide that is intangible? Employees have emotional needs that should be met at work. For example, people must have outlets for social interaction in the professional realm. Most importantly, employees need a sense of community in the workplace.
Isolation Erodes Company Culture and Well Being of Employees
It’s not merely important that employees feel a sense of community at work; it’s vital. An organization lacking a healthy sense of connectedness is a breeding ground for lonely employees. If you think loneliness in the workplace is no big deal, think again; loneliness can seriously impact employee performance.
Researchers Sigal Barsade and Hakan Ozcelik conducted a study that analyzed the effects loneliness in the workplace had on employee performance. They found that “loneliness led to withdrawal from work, weaker productivity, motivation, and performance.”
In her article Why Work Loneliness Isn’t a Personal Problem, and What to Do About It, Janet Choi says, “The quality of your social connections impacts your physical and emotional well-being, and so impacts the physical and emotional well-being of the people who run a business.” She continues, “When you start feeling isolated at work, you also get demoralized and detached, perhaps even depressed.” Indeed, loneliness stemming from a lack of community at work can cause emotional problems. Clearly, corporate community is crucial for employees.
Do you know how many companies have successfully created a culture that fosters relationship and connectedness? Not nearly enough. In 2013, a survey was taken that included 12,115 employees of various, unrelated companies. Of the 12,115 people, only 35 percent felt a sense of community at their workplace. When you get right down to it, 100 percent of employees should feel connected to their workplace community. This is neither impractical nor unattainable.
Barriers to Corporate Community
Workplace isolation and loneliness isn’t the result of maniacal plans devised by horrible employers. No, this type of isolation is the direct result of the following scenarios.
Employees must work alone – It’s undeniable that some employees have to work alone, either in a building of people or at a remote location. Certain employees even work from the other side of the world.
Employees literally don’t speak the same language – Almost every midsize-to-large company has at least a few employees who do not speak the primary language of the organization. This can be a problem for an employer who wants to create an inclusive company culture that unifies employees.
Employees are busy – Let’s face it: many employees simply don’t have time to socialize at work. Some individuals are so busy that they work alongside their colleagues for years without developing real relationships with them.
While these scenarios can certainly be frustrating and preventive of a culture conducive to relationship, such a culture can be created in spite of these barriers. How? With the help of a social learning management system (LMS).
Create Corporate Community With a Social LMS
An LMS, or an eLearning system, is the perfect solution for a company wanting to give its employees a sense of community. The right learning management system will give ALL your employees access to the same training/work-related information located on one cloud-based system. With an LMS featuring mobile learning, employees can access work resources anywhere, at any time, from any device connected to the Internet. Features like realtime chat and web conferencing make it easy for employees—no matter their location—to connect with one another. Also, some LMSs offer language localization. This means your employees can access the LMS in their primary language. With this feature, no one gets left out.
Can you see how a social learning management system could unify your employees and provide them with the workplace community they desire?
You can create a sense of community for your employees in spite of barriers like language and location with an LMS like TOPYX. TOPYX is the perfect employee unifier. It offers language localization, mobile learning and other social features that keep employees connected and on the same page.
Don’t allow your organization’s culture to remain sterile and individualistic. Transform your company into one that facilitates relationship and connectedness by implementing an LMS.