Work Environment: How to Make It Productive

This week I was beginning my reading on Ed Catmull’s Creativity book. Good, but what does this have to do with the title of the article? Simple, soon on the first page I came across how things are done at Pixar. For those who do not know, the headquarters in San Francisco is named after his Steve Jobs building, and the place was all thought not of luxury or extravagance, but of its functionality, and primarily of the collaborative capacity of its employees.

Where everything is designed for the well being of employees, whether at their desks, dress mode, or even in their personal aspects. The place counts on sports court, swimming pools and amphitheater with capacity of six hundred seats. Where people are encouraged to talk, to know the other areas, to know the business of the company.

Soon I had the idea of ​​the article, for the simple phrase: the collaborative capacity of its employees.

I myself and several colleagues have already gone through situations where we were hired to do a job, and there we did another. In addition, we saw that we were not apprehensed properly to co-workers, or even other teams, and worse we did not know how the hierarchies, and the work processes worked. Absurd Yes.

We are in a completely digital era, but many companies still talk about collaboration, innovation, and do not know how to treat people. You do not have the minimum of emotional intelligence. They do not know how to direct and use talents. Often, employees just want to have their ideas heard, have a work plan, with beginning, middle, end (yes, an end, after all no task is eternal).

I believe that all leadership must learn to give a base of work, talk, listen, and even learn from the employee. You have to hire to work together, not to sue. (or at least if you just sue your employee, state your expectations). Know how to do follow-ups, avoid conflicts, set goals, remember that all employees pay bills, many have children, boyfriends, girlfriends, plan to purchase a home, car, trip to disney, or even visit parents at the end of the year .

Many employees just want to know who the “boss” knows how to manage the job, and how to charge such work.

Returning to the point of collaboration, I invite everyone to a mental exercise of the following scenario:

  • Four teams, each team has one manager, each team has 15 employees
  • Not everyone knows each other, and not everyone knows their real role and how to actually collaborate
  • I assume everyone is senior.

Situation: There is a problem in production.

  • Why call only one or two, or three of each team?
  • Why not summon everyone, so that everyone can be heard?
  • Why not rotate meeting members?
  • Why not use the case of a meeting, or a problem and elaborate a discussion session of what could have been differently proposed by other members?
  • Whoever thinks this is a fictional situation, it is not. This occurs in more “collaborative” environments than you might think.


  1. Applications for layoffs
  2. Money spent
  3. Lost time
  4. Frustration

How to solve ?

  1. Listen to employees better
  2. Know Your Personal Dreams
  3. What motivates each one
  4. Personal Goals
  5. Delegate, follow up, give feedback
  6. Know each employee’s follow-up cadence
  7. Encourage interaction, coffees, lunches, or even dinners.