Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Keeping it Catalyst at the Office

Bumper-to-bumper traffic on I-95 and Metrorail delays are no surprise to anyone traveling to work Monday through Friday. Catalyst staff confront these and a host of travel factors when heading into downtown Miami during the work week. Even with the best intentions of being on time, each one of us is bound to experience that moment when easing into the office a few minutes after the “estimated time of arrival” is coupled with a hope that no one notices our tardiness.

Not to worry. Rather than harsh reprimands for late arrivals, the Catalyst Miami family has started a unique tradition. 
Walk into a meeting late and you may be asked to lead the team in the chicken dance, speak in a British accent or perform an impromptu tap routine in front of everyone in the office.

Sneaking in without notice isn’t an option thanks to this tradition, which was introduced by Chief of Civic Engagement Gretchen Beesing. What started as an idea during a team meeting turned into a longstanding practice in which the entire meeting group votes on something funny a latecomer has to do.
These quirky requests lightly admonish people for being tardy and fit the culture of the organization, where ice-breakers, team-building exercises and get-to-know you activities are common.

Gretchen found that people were less likely to be tardy when they had to face some sort of embarrassment if they did. Staff have reacted favorably to this tradition mentioning all the fun it's been watching their colleagues perform an impromptu dance or speak in various accentsThe takeaway is that it's possible to have a little office fun while reiterating the importance of punctuality in the work place.
After all, better late than never, but never late is always better.

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