Employees Dedication and the Art of Applying Familial Working Environment
13 June 2017 Emilia Natarina
It is advised that we should draw a clear line between personal and professional relationship at work for fear it might interfere with our judgment and decision-making. Knowing the difference between personal and professional relationships would help us remain strategic and negotiate our professional relationships in ways that are conducive to our ongoing success, as suggested by Marcia Sirota, a psychiatrist, in her article titled "The Real Difference Between Personal & Professional Relationships" published on 17 August 2014.
She suggested that in personal relationships, we value the quality of the connection with the other person. The closeness is an object in itself. We spend time with friends and family because it feels good to be with them. We care about each other, want the best for each-other and are there for each-other.
Sirota also viewed that we might genuinely like the other person in professional relationships, including giving a little TLC. However, the main purpose of this type of relationship is about helping the other person get ahead in their career. Strictly professional I suppose.
Further on, she added that our professional relationships are forged in service of our professional goals, whereas our personal relationships arise out of basic human need for love, connection, and belonging. So it is understandable if your colleagues opt to interact with you selectively and limit the type of subject being discussed when engaging in a conversation with you. While the advices of professional and personal relationships above might be true, I personally beg to differ.
I personally believe that it is possible to make friends at workplace. That I can connect with my colleagues based on our hobbies, life goals, interests, personal experiences, beliefs, and not just based on our job descriptions and roles at work. That it is ok to go for a drink or movie with your coworkers after work and spill a side of your personal life without fearing they will use the details against you some day. This view has stayed with me since day one of my corporate job. Luckily, I’m not alone.
Since 2016, Trendreader has awarded employees with 5 years of service term. The tradition continued until 2017 with a total of 13 employees, each receiving a trophy and a gold medal as token of appreciation. One question that popped to my head was, "what makes them stay for this long in one workplace?"
As Trendreader Digital Marketing team celebrated their dedications on Trendreader’s social media as well, we asked them that one particular question among others. The answers surprisingly had one common theme.
We first asked the employee with the longest service term from the 13 chosen, Nurlaelah, who joined Trendreader on 9 July 2009 (FIN & HRGA Team Leader) – "What makes you stay this long in Trendreader?" Her answer was, "familial working environment which has been nurtured since day one."
The two-day symposium had given me many priceless experiences, from gaining new knowledge to meeting new people. Above all, and to conclude the story, from many lessons learnt during the symposium, allow me to cite two most favorite quotes in the event:
Here are the rest of the 5 Years of Dedication employees’ replies to the same question:
•Muhammad Yudiantara (Production Supervisor)– "When our performance is acknowledged and familial working environment."
•Fiqri Al-Fiqar (Digital Marketing Traffic Controller) – "My coworkers. They’re like my second family."
•Rahman Hidayat (Production Supervisor) – "Familial working environment."
•Melisa Putri (Marketing Administration) – "Familial working environment. Not only do we work in Trendreader but we also form a good relationship."
•Ahmad Zarfi (Production Team) – "Our bond is more than just coworkers but more like family at work. And having a wise leader also helps."
•Nasrulloh (Sr. Media Analyst) – "Flexibility, good relationship among coworkers, and management care towards the employees’ well being."
•Panji Antar Wibowo (Production Team) – "I see my coworkers as my second family and Trendreader as a home."
•Ahmad Humaidi (Production Team) – "Togetherness and familial working environment."
•Irvan (GA Team) – "Fun coworkers."
•Lutfiato (Production Team) – "Good coordination and good relationship with the team."
•Iksanudin (Production Team) – "Familial working environment and good team mates."
•Abdurahman Sayuti (Production Team) – "Familial working environment and close location from home."
Besides pay raise and appraisal from the management, we unconsciously seek for comforts from our coworkers. Sure, each of us is driven by ambition and different goals but we long for meaningful conversation between lunch and coffee breaks. We long to laugh genuinely with the people we work with, being corrected in a friendly manner, and share more than just our skills and intelligence with them, our real-life experiences and dreams.
We get competitive. We aim for that career moves and the benefits but the way I see it, we play it fair. No backstabbing, no pitting against each other. We talk things out just what families do. This familial working environment is not solely created by the employees but rather initiated by the management. It is a mindset and culture that are invested into the mind of each employee since day one.
I do agree that we should still understand clearly the difference between professional and personal relationships. However, it all comes back to the working environment and culture being applied in one’s office, and the management style applied. We should never let our guards down but never be too afraid to connect with our coworkers. However, you are free to apply whichever method suits your interest, objectives, and personalities the best as long as you don’t forget to have fun at work with your team.