UMD’s Thriving Workplace Initiative (TWI) is making the University of Maryland a great place to work by providing tools and support to foster engaged, inclusive and empowered faculty and staff across campus.

Each Monday, its Five to Thrive list offers five strategies crowdsourced from research, experts and our own UMD community to help your workplace thrive.

Want to build a Thriving Workplace? Here are this week’s tips:

  • In the age of Zoom and Webex, remote meetings can help connect teams operating at a distance. If you have regular virtual meetings, consider adopting a “camera required” policy at least once a month, where people are required to turn on their computer cameras. Seeing people—even virtually—makes them feel connected. Let them know in advance so they’re not caught in their pajamas!
  • Ask, “what’s something you’d like to try?” Instead of waiting for an employee to tell you they want a challenge, go sleuthing.
  • Make time to “check in” with yourself. Take one hour a week to write down what’s working, what’s not, and what you can do—big or small—to inch toward your goals.
  • “If you can name it, you can tame it.” The next time you’re feeling tired, angry or overwhelmed, take a minute to recognize that emotion. By describing how you’re feeling in words, you can better manage it with a thoughtful response.
  • Plan your apologies strategically. If it’s a real-time slip-up, acknowledge it immediately. If your screw-up affected someone specifically, take the time to apologize in person. If you messed up in front of your whole team, address it at the next meeting.

Last week's Five to Thrive suggested "pausing" your inbox to increase productivity. This is not a standard feature of Gmail; it is an extension for Chrome offered by Boomerang. Because privacy features vary on extensions, be sure to read any policy thoroughly or consult with DIT before adding an extension to your UMD Gmail account.