Office Chores: Many Hands Make Light Work

Like any office, there are plenty of chores that need to get done at Radish. They may not be the most exciting things to do during the workday but hey, still need to happen. After all, a smelly trash can isn't fun for anybody.

A while back, we decided that it would be a fantastic exercise in team spirit if some of these office chores became shared responsibilities between everyone. The Radishes, of course, agreed and I jumped at the chance to organize the effort.

The Chores that Keep Radish Rolling

Before I just started ordering people to do this or that, I first narrowed down what I could see were the main things that had to be done regularly to keep the office looking gorgeous.

The regular crew of Brooklyn Radishes is actually kind of small. A lot of our team members work remotely, so the number of people in our office is always in flux. However, a mighty team of five are around regularly enough that it makes sense for them to take part in the chore rotation. So, I came up with a list of five chores which, on their own, aren’t too stressful to have to be responsible for one week at a time:

  • Cleaning the tables and countertops throughout the office
  • Taking out the trash and recycling
  • Emptying the dishwasher in the morning and running it in the evening
  • Watering the plants
  • Taking out the compost

Octopi, Earthworms, + Raccoons … Oh My!

Chris came up with some awesome code names for each chore. For example, whoever is watering the plants is that week's 'Bumblebee.'

radish lab chores bumblebee

Rather than calling them 'the Plate Jockey', if a person is responsible for cleaning the dishes we instead call them that week’s ‘Octopus.’

radish lab chores octopus

You may remember that that we take our compost over to our neighbors at Sure We Can. Instead of being stuck with ‘compost duty,’ everyone gets to be the ‘Earthworm’ every couple of weeks.

radish lab chores earthworm

The ‘Raccoon’ gets to sort our recycling and haul it downstairs (along with the trash) every week, or whenever it gets full.

radish lab chores raccoon

Finally, the ‘Duck’ of the week is responsible for keeping the office’s surfaces clean and tidy. This turned out to be a pretty easy chore, because the Radishes are all great at cleaning up after themselves.

radish lab chores duck

We also honor all of the Radishes who aren’t Brooklynites - meaning they’re only in the office a few days a week or are only here when they’re in town visiting - as our ‘Eagle Eyes.’ The Eagle Eyes are around to just help where they can, and look for any messes, spills, or general untidiness that the other Radishes might have missed.

I held a training session with the rest of the team so we could go over the details together. Everyone came with lots of ideas for how we streamline certain tasks and how particular responsibilities could be combined or split up. For example, should cleaning the microwave be the Duck's job or the Octopus's? Should the trash go out every day or just when it gets full? How can we make sure the Bumblebee doesn't over- or under-water the plants?

As a group, we talked through these questions and worked out the best way to manage each of the chores. I got us a fancy little chalkboard, printed off some cartoony animal icons, and made nametags for everyone so people could see who had what chores each week. The place has been sparkling ever since!

The Spiffiest Office in Town

We’ve been keeping a clean house as a team for the last few months, and there’s no sign of us stopping yet! The office has never looked better, and it’s all thanks to the Brooklyn crew’s hard work and dedication.

I’m grateful to work with a team that was so eager to pitch in and keep our office looking awesome. We’re lucky to spend our days in such a beautiful space overlooking one of the most vibrant parts of Brooklyn. This experiment has shown just how much we all appreciate it.