Blog: Brewing a Strong Culture: GAINS’ Coffee Roulette Enhances Employee Engagement

By Brendan Whalen – GAINS Community Manager

coffee roulette employee engagement

Every month, GAINS employees can opt-in to be randomly paired with another employee and get together over coffee to discuss… well, whatever they want! It’s called Coffee Roulette, and every month, members of the #GAINSgang are matched up and get together and learn more about their global colleagues over a cup of coffee.

Company Culture and Employee Engagement is More Important Than Ever

With so many of our employees working remotely outside our Chicago headquarters, Coffee Roulette allows us to connect on a more personal level in a casual setting, contributing to the collaborative culture we have here at GAINS. Creating meaningful connections helps build trust, engagement, compassion, and new friendships across the company.

“What’s best about Coffee Roulette is being able to connect with colleagues, especially those that are remote, on a personal level,” says GAINS People & Talent Manager Ashley Rutter, one of the original creators of the group. “It’s a welcome break each month to learn more about the individuals you’re working with regularly and meet those in roles that you may rarely interact with or have the opportunity to meet otherwise.”

“I love working from home, but the opportunity to get to know the people outside my team is something I miss; the only person I run into at the watercooler is my wife, and she already knows my weekend plans,” joked Marketing Manager Joe Davis. “This way, I meet coworkers in other states and sometimes other countries. It has been a lot of fun!”

Employee Resource Groups are Important

Coffee Roulette improves job satisfaction and helps remind people that companies are made up of individuals. It’s one of the ways that GAINS makes every individual feel valued and that their contributions are essential to our success. Not only does Coffee Roulette unofficially “reward” folks with a free coffee from the coffee shop of their choice every month, but it also allows employees to destress and disconnect from work for a moment. (One of the unofficial rules of Coffee Roulette is to not talk about work.) Programs like Coffee Roulette encourage people to take a break and build a community at work to improve the overall professional and personal well-being of our workplace.

A Focus on Personal Wellness

The pandemic made many people realize just how vital physical and mental self-care is, and employees engaging in a program like Coffee Roulette encourages and normalizes taking a break and being kind to themselves. Moreover, programs like Coffee Roulette create a better employee experience, leading to greater employee satisfaction, retention, and overall productivity and performance. A company is nothing without its people, and to accomplish its goals, it’s pivotal that companies create these kinds of engagement opportunities for their workforce.

Employee engagement groups can have an impact on organizational success. Creating these opportunities helps increase morale, purpose, sense of belonging, well-being, and productivity by improving job satisfaction.

“The Last Drop”

The GAINS Coffee Roulette program has been a shining example of an effective employee engagement initiative, fostering personal connections and improving overall job satisfaction for several years. Employees across every team, including remote staff, cultivate trust, friendship, and collaboration across the company, including our president, Dave Shrager. Apart from offering a respite from daily work tasks, the program helps remind employees that they are valued, contributing to increased morale, a sense of belonging, and overall productivity. And who doesn’t enjoy a cup of great coffee and some conversation?

In a world where remote work is becoming increasingly commonplace, programs like Coffee Roulette are crucial in building a company culture that prioritizes employee wellness and fosters a sense of community. GAINS’ unique initiative is a powerful tool for employee retention and satisfaction, underlining the significance of personal connections in the corporate world.

Looking for a new opportunity? Consider one of our many open positions (we’re growing!), it’s a fantastic global team who loves helping customers and drinking coffee!