Monday, April 23, 2012

A Day Out

My employer had me over to visit recently for meetings and during one of the days I was there, we had a "day out" for our department. About 25 of us packed into a bus and drove to a small English town to visit the Gainsborough Museum and a print shop. We spent a half day doing etching and printing the results on paper and a half day in the museum. I have to say that it was rather enjoyable, and it was definitely a bit of a bonding time for me with people that I see once a year (or less).

I have to admit. I wasn't thrilled with the idea, and grumbled a touch. The museum wasn't terribly interesting to me and I didn't want to spend the time there when I could have been coming home a day early, but I did see the value in there. I got to know a few people better, and I think the bonding that occurred in the common experience will help some of us to work a little better in the future.

It reminded me of other events at places I've worked. One 20 person department had a monthly event of some sort for a few hours (lunch, a baseball game, a movie, etc.). Another had a large cookout 3-4 times a year for hundreds of employees.

Perhaps a waste of money, but none of the events was extravagant and all provided employees with the chance to let loose a little and get to know each other. I have to say that the places that did have some out of work bonding were the places I most enjoyed working. It's something I might recommend to small businesses, and something I'd do if I get another business going.

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