Intuitively, most would recognise the need for helping each other within an organisation (and life in general). Research confirms that a “Giver Culture”, a culture where team members help, share, offer mentoring, and make connections leads to highest effectiveness. In comparing top-ranked helpers with a “random non-helpers” Amabile and others found that it was the higher level of trust and accessibility for helpers, rather than competence that made the difference.
What this research also found is that helpfulness must be nurtured as it does not arise automatically. In line with the evolution of trust in individuals where one cannot be certain that any resources they provide to another person will be reciprocated later, help requires a similar commitment for uncertain returns. At the moment of providing help “it might seem like more trouble than it’s worth”.
Creating a culture of “mutual help” is tricky as it can only be inspired, not forced.
And, did you offer any help today?