How close are you getting to your staff? Can you sense their mood?
The video embedded below shows Evernote CEO, Phil Libin, working as a barista in the coffee shop in Evernote’s reception. Every employee is expected to take a turn at the machine and does on average an hour a week. This includes the senior management team, nobody is excused.
In the video Libin talks about how it is an opportunity for him to “say hi to people that I that I’d maybe not normally interact with during the day. It’s also fun that it’s in the lobby because I get to see people coming and going and I can tell what sort of a mood they are in. I can tell if people are leaving happy or not. I can see what partners we are meeting with. It’s a fun way to keep an eye on the pulse of the company.”

Of course most organisations cannot afford to have their own coffee shop staffed by employees and you probably wouldn’t want to seem “too much silicon valley start-up” as Libin says, somewhat tongue in cheek, but it does raise an interesting point about not becoming too remote from your staff and taking every opportunity to interact.
So whilst becoming your company’s own star barista might not be appropriate but ask yourself what opportunities you do have to interact with your staff?

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