Decoding the hum at the workplace

Posted on 20-Jul-2014 by K S Kumar

Have you ever walked into an office and, without speaking with anyone, got a positive feeling or equally a feeling that something was not alright? Is it the pace with which people walk around? Is it the way people interact? Is it the smiles or lack of them? Is it the little sounds of laughter or the deep silence? 

Most professionals with a reasonable sense of intuition can get a feel of the work environment and team dynamics by just walking around or watching people interact. A couple of meetings generally tend to confirm the intuition. Managers play a key role in generating the positive hum at the workplace and leveraging the positive energy for workplace productivity.

Sumantra Ghosal spoke about this and described it as The Smell of the Workplace.  Watch his 8.14 min speech delivered at the World Economic forum on the YouTube channel at or directly at this link

Do comment with your thoughts on what creates or dulls the hum at the workplace!



  • Comments (1)
  • Alok Singh

    Prof Sen is bang on the money and the Video explains your point in greater detail Kumar.Leadership is all about creating the right context and its 'context' that creates the hum.Aside to what you describe as the hum which discerning professionals can notice intuitively, I feel, the right 'smell of the workplace' is often noticed when you scratch the surface a little.World has moved since prof. Sen spoke and I believe all- companies, employees and management are better in pretending today as they all know what 'good' looks like..

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