According to online talent development company Everwise, more companies are launching workplace reading programs and book clubs for their cultural and development value. Reading improves mental sharpness, broadens vocabulary and fosters greater empathy, so companies will benefit from their employees reading for pleasure.
Everwise said in a post that companies interested in starting their own reading initiative should introduce it to employees as something that has personal and professional value. The company offered some tips to get a reading program started, including:
Get leadership involved. As with most things related to enhancing and transforming workplace culture, having senior leader buy-in will help the initiative take off as employees see leaders dedicate some of their own time to the program.
Talk about it. The workplace reading program won’t be a hit if employees aren’t involved in making it so. Meaning, learning leaders should ask employees for their input about what they want to see happen in the book club. Ask employees what books interest them and what they’d like to learn. Discuss logistics, as it’s important to ensure the conversation focuses on how the reading program can provide the most value to employees.
Don’t make it required reading. There was enough of this in people’s school days not to mention more than enough job-related reading as well. Instead of forcing employees to participate, which changes the tenor of the program, start the program with volunteers. It’s better if volunteers invite their peers to join.
Bravetta Hassell is a Chief Learning Officer associate editor. Comment below, or email email@example.com.