Can Your Office Survive The Zombie Apocalypse?

You’re sitting at your desk, enjoying a morning cup of joe. As you peruse your inbox, one subject line catches your eye: New Company-wide Policy On Zombies. Upon opening the email, you read:

Dear Staff,

Given the fact that over half of the accounting department has been infected by a highly contagious zombie virus, HR has attached the office protocol of what to do should there be a zombie apocalypse. We ask that all employees review this document and provide an electronic signature by the end of the day acknowledging that you have read and understand all parts of the procedure.

The HR department also recommends that you review your employee benefits package so you are aware of the company medical leave policy, as well as services available, should you or a loved one be bitten by a flesh-eating zombie.

Alright, maybe your office isn’t quite that prepared to deal with a zombie apocalypse. But you have to admit you’ve wondered about how you and your co-workers would fare if the walking dead did overrun the earth.

Recently, CareerBuilder and EMSI ranked American cities on their ability to survive a zombie apocalypse based on criteria like food supplies and defense capabilities. But what if you’re at the office when zombies attack?

Here are three workplace factors that will affect your company’s ability to survive the threat of a hoard of brain-hungry zombies:

1. Communication style

In a 2015 Interact survey, 57 percent of employees reported that their superiors have trouble giving clear directions and 51 percent said their boss has flat out refused to talk to them. This is a big enough issue on a normal work day, but even more problematic when there are zombies involved. If there are communication problems between employees and office leadership, chances are there won’t be an open or productive dialogue about defense tactics.

Also, remember to consider how your office recognizes achievements. A 2014 Tinypulse survey found that only 21 percent of employees feel valued at work and only 44 percent give peer-to-peer recognition. Being able to talk about each other’s accomplishments increases camaraderie and morale. After all, how bad would you feel if you defended your team against an insurgence of zombies with a three-hole punch and nobody appreciated your efforts?

2. Teamwork abilities

Having a diverse range of backgrounds and skill sets increases a team’s chances of success. 2014 research from McKinsey & Company found that gender-diverse companies were 15 percent more likely to be high performing, and racially- and ethnically-diverse companies were 35 percent more likely to outperform other teams.

The theory is that our background and life experiences influence how we think and what skills we develop. By having a diverse team, there are more strengths and ideas at members’ disposal to solve problems.

Of course, your company also has to encourage you and your co-workers to work well as a team. The 2015 Job Satisfaction and Engagement survey by SHRM found that only 26 percent of employees were satisfied with teamwork within their department and just 22 percent were happy about interdepartmental teamwork.

So if you look around your office and see a lot of similar people working independently, even impending zombie doom might not be enough to bring you together.

3. Employee perks

Perks go a long way in regards to attracting and retaining quality employees, but they can also save your life.

A well stocked break room can provide you and your co-workers with nutrition, and nice, big ergonomic chairs can help you barricade the doors. An in-house daycare or bring-your-pet-to-work policy will give you peace of mind about your children’s and pet’s safety. Not to mention an awesome health insurance policy will ensure you’ll have access to the zombie virus cure once it’s developed.

If worse comes to worse and your company lacks all other zombie fighting abilities, you can at least take advantage of the generous PTO policy and hunker down in your bunker until the zombies are defeated.

What other work environment factors could play a part in your office’s ability to survive the zombie apocalypse? Share in the comments below!

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