I was disappointed to see on BBC Breakfast that many more colleagues are failing to make cups of tea for colleagues. Read the article. Whether they don’t feel they have time to make tea for colleagues or in fact they feel it is ‘beneath them’ to be asked to make a round of teas for the team, they are missing an opportunity.
It is a good opportunity to have a few moments break from your work. Rest your eyes; stretch your legs and arms – and refresh your mind! It is also an ideal opportunity to connect with your team and bond!
I had an assistant 4 years ago. She had an excellent degree, but she didn’t know how to make a cup of tea, didn’t want to learn to make a cup of tea, but was happy for me to make one for her. It took four months before she made me a cup of tea and was then sold on the idea of the benefits. When she moved to her new job, she fully appreciated the “tea run”; she got to speak to people that she wouldn’t have had the chance to meet otherwise. She was able to raise her profile easily within the large organisation, and to network with people straight away.
I know there are team members, who aren’t really team players. They only make tea (or coffee) for themselves. They wait for everyone else to be out when they make tea, or they make an awful tea so everyone refuses to drink it. There is also a shift in attitude to tea making. Some people think it is beneath them to be asked to do this task. Everyone to their own, but actually it is a great opportunity to start networking with people you wouldn’t normally speak to – particularly as a junior member of staff. That’s the reality!
Also, if there are serious deadlines, and we all have them, it is great to re-group and have a 5 minute break for a ‘cuppa’ to re-energise and regroup: check everyone’s on task and TALK!!!
So when you slink off to the coffee making machine on your own, think about what you’re missing: if you offer to make a tea/coffee for a colleague you might find out about another opportunity in the company or even raise your profile!
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