One of the hardest elements of building a business is also one of the most essential to its success. Employees who not only like each other but trust each other are key to building the elusive ideal office culture. You might have in mind corny presentations and mandatory small-talk, but one effective way to jumpstart team bonding could be as simple as switching on a console.
Researchers at Brigham Young University have just shared a study looking at how people who don't know each other are best incentivized into working together. One of the best shortcuts? Video games. Study participants who played games like Halo 4 or Rock Band together for 45 minutes, after not knowing each other beforehand, showed a 20 percent increase in task productivity as a group.
We think of career progression in terms of the individual, but work life depends a lot on how you fit in with your team. The right group can lead to personal growth, while collaboration can provoke higher-quality productivity. It seems natural that we'd look to video games as a means of improving office culture too: Our ideal office of the future is much more tech-integrated, and there's plenty of research showing that gamification can vastly improve things as boring as the onboarding process.
If you're a business owner or manager and all this sounds a little ~millennial to you, take this into consideration: Employees in a happy work environment are 10 percent more productive overall. Get going on the office culture of your dreams — it will pay off at every rung in the ladder.