by Gabriel Gonzalez //
There are many ways to show appreciation in the workplace, and one of the most meaningful is through making time for people. This can be as small as taking the time to address a 5-minute hallway question, or as involved as working with someone on a project or committee. As staff, with our competing priorities, it is hard to make time to connect with our peers and leadership, though these connections are useful to build relationships with the individuals you work with on a daily basis. A recent experience here at Berkeley Law showed me an example of appreciation, leadership and team building through the effort of making time, being humble and following-through.
This story starts with a new hire at Berkeley Law and ends at a Taco Bell on Durant Ave. One of the individuals in the IT group here, Montie, wanted to invite a new employee out for a casual lunch. Montie finds him in the hallway and casually mentions they should go to lunch sometime.
Several weeks go by and not much progress has been made on the lunch front. Now, it could be forgiven if a casual lunch appointment made in passing was forgotten, but this is not one of those cases. In fact, it was the new employee, who in running into Montie in the hall, reminded him of scheduling lunch with him. This seemingly small interaction was quite meaningful, in that the new employee was actually interested in going to lunch with Montie and worked to follow-up, which shows mindfulness and care.
Being a genuine leader is a noticeable trait that has an impact even beyond the original intention. In the end, Montie, followed-up and found a time, with some creative calendaring, for a lunch. Originally Montie and the new hire were going to head to Top Dog but since Montie hadn’t been to Taco Bell in ages and wanted a Baja Blast, they went to Taco Bell. Their conversation was candid – baseball, Dodgers, Lakers, going so far as discussing the new employee’s thoughts on his hiring, and even expressing, to Montie’s surprise, that he was not so sure he was going to get the job at Berkeley Law.
Some appreciation takeaways
- Making time and sharing time shows appreciation
- Be humble, be open
- Be mindful about connecting with individuals, even for lunch
- The Baja Blast is back at Taco Bell
This new employee is the new dean of the Law School, Erwin Chemerinsky. This isn’t the first time that Montie has reached out nor is it the only time the Dean has made time to meet with staff, but it is a great example that shows appreciation and connecting can be practiced by people at every level in the organization. It makes an impact and it’s memorable. Take a minute and reach out to a colleague right now!
Do you have a story of making time for someone? Share it in the comments below…