I’m old school, I still have blogs that I follow in my RSS Reader 😉
Today I came across this post from ACRLog by Zoë McLaughlin titled “Library Open Mic”. Zoë describes an innovative practice at her place of work. Library staff are encouraged to present 5 minute lightning talks about a topic of interest to them at monthly, (loosely) themed sessions. She has heard talks about topics as diverse as text mining, the Christmas tree economy in Michigan, and womens’ place in golf! But mostly she praises the initiative for its role in helping her to learn about her workplace’s culture, its capacity for sparking broader, meaningful discussions, and its success in making her feel more engaged and connected as someone relatively new to the organisation.
Bravo! I say. Brilliant!
What large organisation workplace doesn’t need a little bit of help encouraging staff to communicate and connect with one another? I applaud this activity, not just because of its playful approach to getting people talking, but also for the way it encourages informal interactions between people that don’t work together on daily tasks. This cross-team intra-organisational communication is vital for a healthy, dynamic workplace that inspires people to share ideas, work towards goals, and suggest improvements.
How does your workplace achieve intra-organisational communication? I meet regularly for coffee with colleagues who perform a similar role to me in different teams. But the “open mic” events that Zoë describes go well beyond that, encouraging connections between people from across the library at management-sanctioned, planned events. Do you do anything like that in your workplace?