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July 3, 2024 4 mins

Try this smart ice breaker that helps you work better as a team

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Speaker 1 (00:03):
Welcome to Before Breakfast, a production of iHeartRadio. Good Morning.
This is Laura, Welcome to the Before Breakfast podcast. Today's
tip is that when you are working with a new team,
one of the best icebreakers you can use is for

(00:23):
everyone to share a tip about how they like to
work with people. If you have any particular quirks or preferences,
this is a great time to let people know them.
And this is a much more useful icebreaker exercise than
most of the other ones people come up with. Today's tip,
like others we've heard in recent weeks, comes from Laura

(00:46):
May Martin, author of the new book Up Time. She
was also recently a guest on my other podcast, Best
of Both Worlds. Martin notes that we all develop ways
that we like working. It is often helpful if other
people know about these. For instance, maybe you prefer to
be asked complicated questions in person rather than by email,

(01:12):
or maybe you prefer texting to email and phone calls.
Maybe you have an organization system where it is really
helpful to get meeting agendas at least a day in advance.
Things get thrown off if you don't have it by then.
Whatever it is, it is helpful for colleagues or clients
to know these things, and you probably want to know

(01:32):
their quirks too. Sharing a tip for working with you
normalizes being explicit about how you like to interact and work.
There are some office cultures where it is common for
employees to have a personal user manual describing the way
they work in their norms and preferences and procedures. But
even for an office culture where having personal user manuals

(01:55):
is not the norm, and trust me, it is not
the norm in most offices, I do need to know
how best to work with each other. Not everyone works
the same way. Being aware of this can make a
team a lot more efficient. As for making the one
tip for working with me concept and icebreaker, well, I

(02:16):
am sure we have all been in meetings where the
proposed icebreaker didn't quite hit the mark. Which fruit would
you prefer to be? People share fun facts that aren't
particularly fun and might not be factual either. Do you
really need to know that your colleague once met Will

(02:36):
Ferrell on the beach A tip for working with your
colleague is going to be far far more useful. So
if you are a manager and want to help your
team work together more happily and efficiently. Or if you
are an individual contributor and happen to get the opportunity
to lead an icebreaker, consider asking people to share a

(02:59):
tip for working with them. If you do, you will
make people more aware of the variety of work habits
and preferences in your midst and you can become a
stronger team in the meantime. This is Laura. Thanks for listening,
and here's to making the most of our time. Thanks

(03:27):
for listening to Before Breakfast. If you've got questions, ideas,
or feedback, you can reach me at Laura at Laura
vandercam dot com. Before Breakfast is a production of iHeartMedia.
For more podcasts from iHeartMedia, please visit the iHeartRadio app,

(03:49):
Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen to your favorite shows.

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Laura Vanderkam

Laura Vanderkam

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