Water-Cooler moments


Did you see Line of Duty last night? I did. I even tried to pause the TV at the right moment in an attempt to see the picture on the sheet of paper Steve gave to Ted. Was it H??

It was a big moment – probably THE moment of the series and in different times it would have been the first thing I talked about when I got to the office in the morning. Making coffee or checking the first emails of the day everyone (well most of us) would have been discussing OCGs and “bent coppers” or football results or who got the winner in the Grand National.

Except now in Covid times many of us don’t get that five minutes of gossip – those water cooler moments – because we are at home, working in kitchens, spare rooms and cubby holes.

And while we have all learned how to embrace video conferencing as our main way of staying in touch we really haven’t been in touch. Not on the human level. Not with the things that matter outside of the budget sheet. Those conversations and snippets of news that don’t fit into the 10.30 team briefing and that we wouldn’t bother to phone each other to share – whose kid scored the winner for the under 7s or who exactly IS H?

Which is a shame – because a business isn’t just the thing you all do and the money that is made. It’s a family and it’s the people and their lives that create that family and it’s feeling part of the success of that family that makes you want to work hard for each other.

All of which made me think that now more than ever we should be making the effort to keep in touch. While offices remain closed and as working at home becomes more normalised going forward I think businesses should take the time to reach out to all of their employees with the news and the stories for and from the staff. Of course there should be business news too but also who had a great idea for the business? What’s our next big launch? Who raised what for whom? The things that make our business a human endeavour. The water cooler moments we all miss.

When I started working in design, many years before we started Forty6 design, Michael and I worked in B2B publishing. And from day one it was drilled into us that an industry or company magazine was at its heart a community digest – the parish newsletter. Professionally written and beautifully designed of course but still the parish newsletter – the news and gossip that mattered to those people specifically.

We may not all be getting together in offices as much as we used to but as Covid restrictions start to loosen and businesses hopefully move out of survival and back into growth mode I think we need to reignite that feeling of the parish, the community. Of togetherness and of team because even if we are miles apart and working on our own its nice to be reminded that even from your spare bedroom you are part of something and your efforts are not going unnoticed.

At Forty6 design we can help with that for you. We may not be able to create the water cooler moments themselves – they are down to you and your unique team – but we can help you communicate them. From a simple, elegant newsletter you email out once a week to printed magazines delivered to desks (at home or in an office) we are experts in designing, editing and even writing them for you. So if like me you think it’s good to stay connected then please get in touch on here or visit forty6design.com. I promise we can help even if I can’t tell you who H is.

Or can I?

**Have you missed out on the office gossip? Were you the person who had the skinny on the rest of the team? Whats the best story you ever heard? Let us know on here – just remember to change the names to protect the (not so) innocent**

Related articles

Ready to elevate your brand?

Contact us now and let’s start the conversation