Every office has that crucial team member who carries positivity and embraces creativity, such as sharing music and crafting gifts for colleagues. Kat Vellos, the creator of weshouldgettogether.com, is exactly that person in Covve’s workshop on cultivating authenticity in a remote work environment. She believes in the value of sharing creative passions with colleagues and workplace connections. They represent a deeper personal connection.
Receiving a gift from a colleague that was crafted by them, personally, would feel much more intimate and meaningful. For some, a hand-crafted Christmas stocking may be more appreciated than a bottle of wine in the office’s Christmas gift exchange. Getting to know your colleagues helps in finding ways to connect beyond the usual office and off-site interactions, and will encourage feelings of safety, creativity, and intimacy.
Kat highlights that we can discover these elements about our colleagues by empowering our questions with intention. “The thing to remember with the way that we use questions with intention and with purpose is to acknowledge that they are a doorway to connection.” She has also developed a kit titled Better Conversations to help people better navigate asking and answering questions in the workspace that allow for deeper connections.
She recognizes the significance of identifying individuals with whom we have a high frequency of connection and conversation, as we would know more about them allowing us to forge meaningful relationships. Kat also suggests to forge connections with people who share an identity with you or share your work in your industry but do not work in the same company with you.
You may meet such a person in a conference or a workshop, which can lead to nurturing a strong colleagueship as there is space between you and them, allowing for a favorable frequency of interactions.
These relationships often hold more depth and strength, especially when there are shared roles, skills, or team memberships involved. By acknowledging these connections, we can prioritize and invest our energy in fostering and nurturing proximal relationships.
One powerful approach Kat suggests is to really dig deep in shared passions and interests. These commonalities provide a strong foundation for maintaining connections over long distances. For example, creating playlists or curating music together with friends who share a love for a particular genre or artist can serve as a shared passion and a medium for ongoing connection.
Our world of instant connectivity can sometimes remove authenticity when reaching out to someone. Getting a birthday card from someone in the mail would be much more surprising and personal than a message on the team’s communication channel or on social media. Kat supports using “snail mail” as a means of nurturing intimacy and fostering connections over time.
While conversations may be less frequent, gifting creative and thoughtful items to friends and colleagues through mail allows for a unique and tangible way to share creativity and maintain a sense of connection. By designing and sharing creative things with each other, individuals can express their creativity, surprise one another, and strengthen their bond through these tangible acts of kindness.
Dive into Kat’s insights further by watching the full workshop here.
Interact with thought leaders and industry experts like Kat Vellos at Covve’s upcoming workshop.
Written on 11 Oct 2023.