Have you ever baked or cooked for your co-workers? According to an article titled "Who Dares Bake Cookies for the Office?" that appeared on the Harvard Business Review blog, more than a few people have made a conscious decision not to share home cooked food with their office mates.
Some cited a fear of being stigmatized for less-than-tasty dishes but a number of women, including or maybe, especially those with 20 or more years of professional experience, reasoned that they were concerned about being stereotyped as "motherly or nurturing." On a more positive note, there seemed to be less resistance to share foods among younger workers.
Potlucks A-Plenty at TIC Gums
People who feel stigma attached to bringing in home cooked food for their co-workers must never have worked at TIC Gums. There's little that unites our employees like a potluck lunch and, with the NFL season in full swing, you can be sure the Purple Friday celebrations have already begun.
While these potlucks used to be reserved for special occasions like baby showers, we've now expanded our inspiration for shared meals. We've held going away events for those moving on to other opportunities. Celebrated the arrival of our team of summer interns or wished them well at a the end of the summer. And, of course, enjoyed lots of football-related or holiday-inspired meals. As the company has grown, some potlucks are organized at multiple locations.
Maybe we are more willing to cook for each other because we spend every day serving customers in the food industry. Or maybe it's because many of our employees are food scientists. Regardless, you will find employees of all levels and experience joining in the smorgasboard.
In fact, at the potluck celebrating the start of the football season, a relatively new employee who was anxious about sharing her football-shaped dessert was rewarded for her efforts by having her dish described as "Gooey chocolaty goodness" and its consumption declared a "Life changing experience." Quite a welcome to the team!