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Campus & Community

Five to Thrive 9/30/2019

Your Weekly Tips for Workplace Success

By Maryland Today Staff

yellow thrive art

Illustration by Creative Strategies

Illustration by Creative Strategies

UMD’s Thriving Workplace Initiative 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:

  • Tackle the most important (or most dreaded) task first. Not only are you sharpest in the morning, getting the most pressing assignment out of the way first will make everything else seem easy.
  • Need a good idea? Go for quantity before quality first. Have the team brainstorm a ridiculous number of ideas, then step away from the list for a day or two. Research suggests that during this “incubation period” the subconscious continues to work. When the ideas are revisited, better ones are likely to emerge.  
  • Reduce or even turn off the notifications on your phone.  While more than two-thirds of smartphone owners never change their notification settings, the barrage of requests and reminders to pick up the device can be a serious distraction.
  • Stay calm under pressure by simply focusing on the next step. Even if the next step is to ask for help, doing that will prevent stress from overwhelming you.
  • Don’t make your lack of planning someone else’s emergency. For projects that require help from others, provide colleagues ample time, the right information and a clear picture of scope and deadlines. Not only will it result in a better product, it might inspire repeat collaborations.  

Want more tips? Visit the Thriving Workplace Resource Library or sign up for Food for Thought Friday, which delivers strategies to your inbox each week. Send an email to with the subject listserv to subscribe.

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