Most of us know at least one co-worker who is always willing to help out with additional tasks or perform duties that are outside their role to help the workplace runs smoothly. The person who goes ‘above and beyond’ and voluntarily take on extra duties, is demonstrating organisational citizenship behaviour (OCB).
Why is OCB important?
While engaging in OCB might sound like more work (and stress) for you, research has found there are many positive benefits. Being in control of the actions we take, finding meaning in the work we do, and helping others makes us feel good about our work.
Engaging in OCB is associated with:
- Increased feelings of purpose and meaning at work
- A greater sense of control
- Positive impact on individual wellbeing
- Increased productivity, decreased turnover and decreased absenteeism
How to engage in OCB
Here are a few simple ways you can engage in organisational citizenship behaviour –and help yourself and others:
1. Volunteer to help a co-worker with their tasks when they are experiencing a high level of work after a period of absence
2. Pay attention to your surroundings and the needs of your colleagues –for example if someone is struggling to find the right information, point them in the right direction
3. When a colleagues goes the extra mile such as arriving at work early to complete a task –compliment them and let them know their work is noticed and appreciated
4. Set an example to your peers by role modelling positive behaviours –actions like arriving at work on time, and being punctual for meetings make a difference
5. Promote teamwork by communicating clearly about the workload and the priorities
6. Be transparent with what objectives need to be completed and provide guidance on how they can achieve those targets
7. If you notice a colleague struggling with a task, ask if you can help –sometimes people just need someone to bounce ideas with
8. Display good sportsmanship when things don’t go as planned
9. When work becomes stressful or frustrating, focus on the positives and what you CAN do, rather than complaining about what is WRONG, or things that you CAN’T control