#AskZajno: Good habits to improve your teamwork
#AskZajno is a place for you to ask us the most burning questions of the day — whether about life, design, or what does/doesn’t constitute a legitimate pancake topping.
Shi PingPing, editor of Chinese design website uisdc.com, asks via email:
“What good habits have helped you improve your teamwork?”
Big thanks to PingPing for a great question to get this column rolling!
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: here at Zajno, everything starts and ends with openness to new ideas. But — “be more specific!” we hear you cry. So, here are a few of the key ingredients we’ve found for manifesting creativity, productivity, and positive attitude…
Greet Each New Day
It doesn’t matter how much you love your job — sometimes, a sense of deja vu can kick in. That’s why we start each morning with a whole-company meeting at which we draw each other’s attention to the developments of the past 24 hours, and share our plans and goals for the coming day. This helps us feel a sense of oneness as a team, and reminds us that we’re always moving forward. Plus it keeps our coffee-making game on point.
Pay It Forward
Like any busy design studio, we’re always running at full tilt to keep up with ourselves. But despite this, we all know how important it is to be ready to down tools and help out a colleague in need, even if the task doesn’t fall within the scope of our usual work. Isn’t this annoying, when you’ve got a gazillion other things to be getting done? Well, not really — because we each know that our teammates would do the same for us. And besides — it often only takes a few minutes to jointly solve a problem that one person could have puzzled over for hours.
A Sharing Ecology
The big thing that unites us as a team is our curiosity — but no matter how hard we may wish otherwise, we only have 24 hours in each day to put that curiosity to play. Or at least, that’s what we thought until we realised that by creating tools to pool our inspiration, we could broaden the scope of our discovery exponentially. The first step was creating Weekly Music Playlists, just as a simple way to put all our best tunes in one place. From there, we moved on to the Zajno Grid, which brings together inspiration that touches all our senses, from bold websites and badass beats to brilliant writing and design across the board.
Chill Time After Work Time
Some of us were buddies before we became teammates, while for others, the process worked the opposite way around. But what’s universal is that our relationships run much deeper than just work: we hang together, and pretty often, on a Friday night, we jam together too. (Pro tip: having electric guitars and drums in the office kinda helps with that.)
Fresh Scenery = Fresh Ideas
We’re proud of how inspiring we’ve made our workspace, but even so, sometimes you need something totally new. So every now and then, one of our team will get a little glint in their eye, we’ll fire up SkyScanner and AirBnB, and before you know it, we’ll find our eyes gazing out over a totally new landscape — and our minds filling up with that special breed of inspiration that only travel can bring. Thanks to the amazing tools now at our fingertips, all this happens without our projects missing a beat.
(last but not the least,) A Sound Mind in a Sound Body
Don’t mean to go all Boy Scouts on you, but sometimes, the old ones totally nail it: the brain can’t keep pumping if the body’s been too long slumping. So on top of all the different active stuff we get up to as a team, we’ve also hired a masseur — the perfect inducement to periodically step away from our screens and into a space of total, blissful relaxation and replenishment. After all, you can’t love the world around you until you show some love to yourself.
We hope you’ll keep in touch and let us know if our tips came in handy!
Irene Bilenko is a PR and content manager at Zajno.
She thinks, not unreasonably, that she’s got it all figured out, and she tries to help the world come to terms with this fact using [social networks].
We’re ready for our next question, so if you’ve had your hand up all this time, tweet using #AskZajno, or email us with that as the subject, also telling us who you are, where you are, and what you do. (Heads up — we’ll share that information if we publish your question, unless you say not to.)