I like to believe that everyone enjoys being a part of a team. Not just existing in a team, but being in a team, participating in important decisions and having your opinion count. That’s kind of what it’s like to work at ABS.
While I’ve only been here at ABS for a little over a year, starting off as an intern and then being offered a full-time position when I graduated from college, I’ve never felt more important to a group of people than I do here. You know that feeling you get when someone you look up to and respect actually listens to your idea? What if they like it? That’s probably one of the best feelings you can have while working at a company. You feel important and that you actually matter, as opposed to just being provided obligatory praise from management.
Some of the best ideas you can ever offer are the ones that come up sporadically, though they still need to be preened and thought over for a while to be the best they can be. Once upon a time (not too long ago), I suggested to my supervisors if I could lead some team-building event during our occasional company lunches. Previously, this time was used for the usual chit-chat between coworkers who were comfortable with each other. While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, the hope behind these lunches was to provide a space & time where employees from different departments could come together and converse. Unfortunately, those within the same department tended to chat within their own groups and not converse much with others and those who were shy would keep to themselves. With this new idea, it would help people interact with everyone in a fun, non-intimidating environment. Since this idea has been put into action, employees at ABS have competed against each other in trivia games, paper airplane competitions (yes, really), a road-trip map game, etc. Not all games are competitive, so we’ve also done some activities like origami folding (this was a struggle for everyone), coffee paintings, telestrations, and so much more. My hope for these events is to let everyone have some fun, not necessarily to win.
After some time of leading team-building events, coworkers will come up to me and ask what’s happening for our next team-building event or will even suggest something they think would be fun to try with others (I’m always open to suggestions). It’s great to see that my coworkers are interacting with everyone, whether it’s casual or work-related, without being uncomfortable between each other. Even better that people from different departments feel comfortable enough to offer suggestions and consider the opinions of others, which plays a large role in the growth of the company and making communication within the company easier to manage.
I can’t take all of the credit though, as it was upper management at ABS that allowed me to foster this idea and execute it within the company. Charles Saller, our CEO, has always made sure that employees are well cared for and everyone feels important. This is evident throughout the company history with things like low turn-over rates and the long tenure of employees. So… thank you ABS for letting me feel important. I hope I get to grow with the company and help make everyone who comes through our company doors feel welcome. 😊