Employees spend significant amounts of time at work and with their coworkers. While some employees may naturally connect with those around them, for others and in some workplaces, making these connections can be a lot more challenging. If employees feel connected to those around them, they’ll be much more likely to continue working for your company and want to stick around. Providing them with a place they feel they belong and with genuine connections leads to a much more positive office environment.

Plan social events

One of the easiest ways to get employees to connect with each other is to plan social events, during the workday or after. You can have coffee and donuts one morning and invite all employees to a common area to spend time chatting and getting to know each other. Plan social hours or group activities after work that employees can come to and meet more people. Encourage employees to attend these events by offering food or some other incentive. The more opportunities people have to get to know each other, the better.

Create affinity groups

Affinity groups can be a fantastic asset for any company. You have the opportunity to connect employees with similar interests and backgrounds and make your company a more inclusive place. Affinity groups can be for any topic or interest and often help people who might feel like they don’t connect with most people in the office finally feel that they have something in common with their coworkers. Letting employees find commonalities and bond over them is great for fostering connections.

Mix up teams

Finding ways for different teams to work together can have huge benefits for helping employees connect with each other. Whether you formally switch teams or simply have various team members work on certain projects together, it gives them an opportunity to get to know more people. You want to build strong teams, but allowing employees to work with new people every so often helps them meet different people while also encouraging creativity and sharing ideas.

Have office-wide meetings

Office-wide meetings can be fantastic resources for connecting employees. Make them fun and interesting; only have meetings if they’re actually necessary. During these large meetings, make it a point to introduce new employees. Have them say a few facts about themselves so other employees can actually see who they are and learn something about them. You can also use these meetings to highlight specific departments at the company and introduce them as well.