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Your living room and bedroom are your sanctuaries. But we all have to share our yards with the neighbors. The yard is the image we created and chose to share with the world.

Luckily, taking care of the yard can be a great way to get to know your neighbors better. You’re bound to run into your neighbors occasionally when you’re out mowing the lawn or trimming the hedges. Instead of just giving them a wave and moving on, take a moment to stop and chat. Ask them about their day or their weekend plans. You may be surprised at how much you have in common.

While retreating can be easier, parts of our lives are still forward-facing. We interact with customers and coworkers each day. Our stakeholders are what drive innovation.

How can we apply this to the workplace?

In many ways, the workplace is like our yards. We share common spaces with our coworkers and want to ensure that those spaces are well-kept and presentable. But just like with our neighbors, we often don’t take the time to get to know our coworkers as well as we should.

Leaders are different than bosses. Bosses hide in their offices and think that if they’re doing their job, everyone else should be too. But that’s not always the case. Your employees are people too, with their own lives and problems. If you take the time to get to know them, you may find that you have more in common than you thought. You may even be able to help them with their problems.

When you’re out and about in the workplace, stop for just one minute – no matter where or what task has called your attention–to chat with each person about their experiences this week; ask questions if needed! You might be surprised at how much closer you become due to taking the time to get to know your coworkers on an individual level. You’ll find that it makes working together more enjoyable and helps create new avenues where problems can quickly resolved because everyone involved knows precisely who is looking into things from different angles.