How To Put The ‘Fun’ Into Work Environments

So you have, or you are implemented Agile in some form, Scrum, Kanban, SAFe…  These are both exciting and scary times.  You’ve convinced your boss that this is a better way to create software, to create and deliver business value earlier, quicker and to build an amazing team.  You have told your boss you can take him or her to management utopia!  Well now it’s time to deliver…

So, why is it then that some many companies that I see have made this massive paradigm shift in thinking, expect their team members to do the same… even though they are still in a work environment that was, to be quite frank, devised in the late 1800’s.

Agile + Fun = Management Utopia
(Massive results, happy staff and happy bosses!)

Let me introduce you to one amazing company.  To be more specific, let me introduce you to Vishen Lakhiani, the thought leading founder.

I am a huge fan of how Vishen runs his teams.  I wish I could help every company become like this.

He is building one of the best teams on this planet.  He practices what we img-workplace[1]love… Agile.  He strives to apply this to every corner of his enterprise.  His focus is on people.  if he get great people, then he will create great products and he will have a great company.

This is a long winded way of me saying…

“If you want your team to think differently, then give them a different environment to think in.”

Check out this for a meeting room…

Mindvalley - The perfect workplaceI was at a meeting in ANZ’s new Tech emporium and wow, what a change to traditional banking workplaces.

For those of you who have not read my ‘Who am I’ section, I’ve spent a lot of time transforming how banks (and other large corporates) run projects and how they treat and value their staff.

My mantra of “Manage Tasks & Inspire People” has got me into a few ‘high-friction’ discussions in some of these traditional corporations!

Their new tech center is nothing short of amazing.  It has been designed from the ground up with people, happiness, innovation and productivity in mind. Collaboration tools are everywhere.  Areas to think, to innovate, to plan, to write, to code, to build… you name it, this building has it.

And a lot of companies are following suit.  During a contract at NAB as a senior project manager I saw their version of this type of workplace.  I would go from building to building and see the difference in the people, the productivity, the innovation, the energy and the happiness.

Now you don’t have to go and build a new building from the ground up!  … of course I am not saying that!

What I am saying is you need to rethink your current working environment.  Create open spaces, spaces to think, to contemplate, to collaborate, to innovate, quiet spaces, noisy spaces, chill out spaces and coding spaces.

Not only will your teams productivity rise, so will their happiness and so will your staff retention rate.  People want to contribute, they want to feel valued.  Combine this with the trust that comes with self-managed teams and you are on a winning streak.

Checkout the first image in this post… Im sure you caught it earlier… he has a room called “The Hall Of Awesomeness”  Seriously… who wouldn’t want to go and work there?!!  This room is specifically designed to make people and their ideas “Awesome”

What can you, a trip to Ikea, and a screwdriver come up with?  Ask your team, after all, its now a group decision.

Enjoy, and I hope to see your ‘Hall of Awesomeness”!

Steve Signature


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