Read Deborah Hoover's Latest Column for Smart Business Magazine

How positive work environments contribute to higher levels of innovation

December 2021

The organization I lead has a small team — just nine of us tackling multiple major initiatives each year. It is imperative that we act as a cohesive group, working collaboratively and supportively to address our shared goals. I have always believed that a positive work environment is a crucial element of any high-functioning team, and after the societal upheavals of the last few years, that view has become a fundamental tenet of how we operate.

To achieve these goals in the workplace, team members must be attuned to the emotions of others. Being genuinely empathic means paying attention so we can understand how others are feeling and reacting. In an era of never-ending Zoom calls, multitasking and abundant worries, maintaining a focus on being present can be challenging. It requires each of us to practice self-care, mind-calming exercises and restorative activities so we bring our best selves to our teams.

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