January has always been an ideal time to reset, take stock and plan for the year ahead. For Dropbox Australia, we’ve spent the first month of 2020 designing enlightened ways of working for our team.

Inspired by our week of experimenting with new ways of working, we’ve decided to roll out permanent initiatives to help bring focus back to our work days and in turn, create the time and space for breakthrough thinking. 

Flow Zone
We believe that people do their best work when they are in a state of flow, so we’ve created a ‘Flow Zone’ in a quiet corner of the office. This area is a more traditional cubicle-style layout equipped with headsets to blockout noise and distractions. It’s a physical space for Dropboxers to focus and engage in deep work. 

Unplugged time off
The Unplugged Program is a global Dropbox initiative that encourages Dropboxers to unplug from work and truly unwind and recharge while on leave. Employees do this by scheduling an email pause during time off which will temporarily turn off access to incoming emails on mobile devices. 

To ensure teams are set up for success, the program includes a Best Practices Toolkit with out-of-office templates and coverage plans to ensure work continuity and more importantly guarantee peace of mind to truly unplug.

Rules of
engagement for email and chat
We recognise that tech-enabled work has created many benefits such as real time collaboration and flexible working but its also created an ‘always-on’ culture which can feel like a 24-hour work day. This initiative is about breaking out of the “always on” mindset, and creating clear expectations between email and chat senders and receivers. 

What If Wednesdays
Our week of experimental ‘work hacks’ encouraged the team to break up their routine, get out of autopilot and create an overall healthy mindset for innovation.

By extension, ‘What If Wednesdays’ is a day each week dedicated to taking control of our workday, innovating how we work as individuals and exploring the possibilities of our roles - this can include making the day meeting-free, breaking the 9-5, or trying the Pomodoro technique.

Focus Fridays 
This is a monthly ‘Hack Week’ style afternoon bringing teams together to solve a communal working challenge. One team can bring a problem or challenge that they’re trying to solve, and have team members from other functions and disciplines work with them on a solution - thereby coming up with new ways of solving it.  

Where to from here?
We’ve kicked off the new year and are back at work refreshed. These new initiatives have come out of employee feedback, and are already being used across the office. We’re excited to see the team embrace an enlightened way of working in 2020!

To find out more about our Enlightened Summer initiative, check out the Enlightened Summer toolkit here