Companies these days are taking unconventional approach to impart values and culture into their people. We realized how one such approach was unknowingly building ours.
Colored Cow is a small company and we prefer to cook our own food. We buy groceries on a Sunday and stock our fridge for a week. It has become a part of our work culture now and there is a reason why we do it.
Every team needs to bond for an effective communication. We believe we can do it by cooking together. Each of us takes to a subtask involved in the process. It brings us together around kitchen and gets us talking. We learn more about each other through this. Also, when we have asked someone to pass the salt a couple of times, it becomes much easier to communicate work related tasks.
All of us know what our roles at Colored Cow are and we’re good at delivering that. So, we’d know all the ingredients to making a website or an app; we’d know its preparation time but none of us is a cook, none of us had ever cooked either. We figure out how to cook our meals from our collective knowledge. We adjust, (sometimes criticize in good humor), when the dish doesn’t work out.
Cooking refreshes. It works like a nap. So we have harmonized our workspace by syncing our naps.
By the virtue of our work and often out of sincere interest, we like to spend long hours working on our projects. Since several breaks reduce productivity, we spend one big break during the lunch hour. We know it’s a lot of man hours but it happens in one slot and everybody is in it together. It sets a cycle. Since we know that a certain amount of time will be spent for lunch, we work hard before and after that time. We learn to work around our constraints.
It is a great way to show that we’re working for and with a team. When we see someone put effort, we are compelled to join in, even if the task is as small as setting the table. We’re not only cooking for ourselves only, we’re doing it to the team too.
The idea is, the values learnt in those 90 minutes of cooking and eating diffuse into the work place.