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The benefits isolation can have on your work

Group communication

In a 2015 study, researchers found that more communication in a group results in the team members quickly converging on a consensus without really exploring alternatives.

In less well-connected groups, team members suffered a bit with information gathering but were less likely to reach a consensus too quickly. Each member built on their own theories, which resulted in a greater diversity of ideas.

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The benefits isolation can have on your work

The benefits isolation can have on your work

https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20200513-the-benefits-isolation-can-have-on-your-work

bbc.com

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Key Ideas

Less communication might be beneficial

So many people across the world are now working remotely. They may be concerned about the loss of regular facetime with their team.

But the latest psychological literature suggests that constant collaboration can reduce 'collective intelligence.' Less communication might actually be more beneficial to a team's joint problem-solving ability.

Group communication

In a 2015 study, researchers found that more communication in a group results in the team members quickly converging on a consensus without really exploring alternatives.

In less well-connected groups, team members suffered a bit with information gathering but were less likely to reach a consensus too quickly. Each member built on their own theories, which resulted in a greater diversity of ideas.

Alone time

Researchers tested how the rhythm of our communication can influence our problem-solving. The participants were divided into three groups.

  • Groups with continuous interaction had a good average performance, but the team members tended to conform to mediocre solutions.
  • People working independently didn't have the opportunity to benefit from other's solutions.
  • The intermittent communication group was the best of both worlds. They could build on the diversity of the ideas that were created independently.

Short, intense communication

Research showed that teams working with short "bursts" of communication, followed by longer periods of silence, performed better than less intense conversations extended over a long time.

Short but intense communication helps to maintain momentum and motivation and create feelings of enthusiasm.

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Psychological safety in team building
Team members need to feel comfortable speaking up to create the communication dynamics necessary for success.

It all comes down to trust, which is one of the characteristics teambuilding...

For an effective teambuilding:
  • Think outside the box when defining the format that works best for all team-members;
  • Avoid activities where people are singled out and might feel embarrassed. These create the opposite of the trust-building effect needed to build strong teams.
  • Effective teambuilding allows teams to tackle an achievable challenge together. Working through a challenge together increases oxytocin and group cohesiveness.
The Pressure Of Time

Most leaders have familiar approaches to managing time: setting goals, planning, delegating, tracking commitments, and creating to-do lists. While these approaches do help in self-organization, the...

Sustainable Productivity

Instead of increasing the number of productive hours, we can focus on getting the right things done in a timely way. We also need to restore and balance ourselves, our colleagues, family and environment, instead of a neurotic or pathological focus on deadlines.

Find out what's truly important to us and use the finite resource of time wisely.

Phantom Workload

Phantom workload looks like real work but results in massive unproductivity and even conflict in an organization. The pressure to meet unrealistic expectations causes a vicious cycle of further workload.

Leaders need to take a hard look at what is being avoided or not addressed. Facing difficult tasks that were 'swept under the carpet' earlier strengthens them further to make hard decisions and face difficult people and situations.

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Excessive sitting

Sitting for an extended period is linked with obesity, type 2 diabetes, and an increased risk of death from heart disease and cancer.

Excessive sitting may also slow metabolism, whi...

Just 30 minutes of activity...
... on 5 days each week (going to the gym, cycling to work, or going for a lunchtime walk) could prevent 1 in 12 deaths globally.

Injecting physical activity into your working day could reduce some of the health risks that are elevated by being sedentary.

Cycle or walk to work
  • Cycling to work has been linked with a reduced risk of death from all causes, and a lower cancer risk.
  • Both cycling and walking to work have also been associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • People who walk or cycle to work have a lower body mass index (BMI) and body fat percentage in midlife than those who commute by car.
  • Those who actively commute to work also benefit from improved well-being and report feeling more able to concentrate and under less strain.

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Social Loafing

It describes the fact that we tend to make fewer contributions when we are in a group versus when we work alone (or are solely charged with the responsibility). 

When a nu...

What Causes Social Loafing
  • Social loafing is influenced by the quality of the relationships between co-workers: where there is group cohesiveness, social loafing isn't really that strong.
  • Social loafing is also influences by the size of the group: bigger groups dictate less individual effort. So if you're in a big company, you tend to believe that surely there must be someone else that will solve a specific problem.
Get Rid Of Social Loafing

Reducing social loafing tendency and increasing contributions among your team comes down to trust. So find people you trust and then give them the ability to make decisions.

And sometimes it's important to give people the option to not take action if that’s what they think is the right course.

Reducing Stress

Many styles of meditation can help reduce stress.

  • In an eight-week study, a meditation style called "mindfulness meditation" reduced the inflammation response caused by stres...
Controlling Anxiety

Less stress leads to less anxiety.

Regular meditation helps reduce anxiety and anxiety-related mental health issues like social anxiety, phobias and obsessive-compulsive behaviors.

Promoting Emotional Health

Some types of meditation can improve depression and help you maintain these benefits.

  • Two studies of mindfulness meditation found decreased depression in over 4,600 adults.
  • One study found that participants experienced a long-term decrease in depression.

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Remote-first Mindset

Accept that you have to put in place remote work systems, even if more than half of your employees ultimately revert to office-based work.

  • If done right, a remote-first infrastructu...
Build a socially-connected culture

Intentionally design for the same interactions that would otherwise happen if people were in the office.

  • Culture is what naturally happens when a group of people gets together for any period.
  • A great culture happens with intentional design and influence. It's the reason you should make your company's mission, vision, values, operating principles, standards, and agreements visible. 
  • Culture is experienced through emotions, including how your employees feel about the company, you, other leaders, and peers. That feeling is developed through human interaction at the water cooler, kitchen, or hallway conversations.
Your leadership presence

Your people need to feel your presence as a leader as they will have fewer opportunities to see you face to face when they work remotely.

  • Regularly show up in a variety of forms that can include weekly video meetings, periodic company-wide emails, or presence in public channels.
  • Err on the side of more communication rather than less.

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