Coffee and conversations: the new office paradigm

- June 27, 2018 2 MIN READ

A recent study of C-Suite executives has discovered the power of coffee in building workplace relationships.

The research conducted by Nespresso found 92 per cent of managers believe having a coffee with a colleague helps facilitate better conversations; while a coffee machine in the office is fast replacing the water cooler as the place for chat and catch ups.

Sally-Anne Blanshard, Career and Business Coach, suggests the results reflect a change in management styles and the way people socialise in the workplace.

“In today’s office environments, it is all levels of people needing connection, especially teams that are cross-functional e.g. Finance and IT or Marketing and Sales,” she tells Kochie’s Business Builders

“More and more businesses now adopt the ‘work remotely’ option as floor space tenancy is maximised and cost of floor space reduced. What comes with this is the positive and modern move of flexibility for employees working from home. Yet also for some, the loneliness of not being around their teams,” says Blanshard.

Blanshard suggests in a world where technology is king and face to face encounters are becoming increasingly limited it’s essential to make time for conversation between workmates.

The results of the study suggest Blanchard is not alone in this assumption. For millennials, coffee and catchups are essential to workplace connection and motivation. 75 per cent of millennial managers say they would provide quality coffee over any other office environment change to help facilitate better conversations. While 87 per cent of upper management and C-suites in Australia believe that having a quality coffee with an employee, will assist them when it comes to having a difficult conversation.

“Connectivity is key and in this ever-increasing world of digital video and conferencing solutions and good old-fashioned emails and messenger, there is definitely value in the retro one-to-one meeting with your manager or colleague,” says Blanshard.

“The ability to catch up in person – have the chance to build rapport – ask after one another on a personal level before moving into the ‘business’ side of the conversation is vital. A coffee in the office, such as Nespresso Professional, provides a good opportunity for this. It provides the opportunity to brainstorm in an impromptu manner following free-flowing conversations.  Ideas and creativity can be nurtured over coffee and next steps or plans built on napkins,” she enthuses.


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