I don’t know whether it is me or whether it is just people, but my teams tend to obsess about food. Particularly cake. Food entwines itself in the team culture. And that is why I think it is worth a blog post.
There is something about sharing food that pulls people together. And “treats” seems to magnify this effect.
My teams always seem to have something “in the usual place”. There are any number of excuses for providing food but here are the most common my teams come up with:
Birthday: People like to celebrate their birthdays with a little something. The best, in my opinion, was when Pedro brought in a big box of Pastel de nata – Portuguese custard tarts – for his birthday.
Holiday: People always bring something to eat from their holidays. Whether chocolate, halva, boiled sweets or ham – it has to be authentic for the holiday destination.
Rugelach after the dentist: Rugelach is a Jewish pastry a bit like a croissant and very common in North London where I live. As it happens there is a Jewish bakery right across from my Dentist. So in an ironic teeth hygiene twist I have a habit of buying a bag full of rugelach every time I have my teeth checked and then take them into work.
Break the build: My current team have a “cake register” to track who has broken the build and hence owes the team cake. Not surprisingly there is considerable excitement when the monitor goes red … and a chorus of “Cake!”
Families reach out: Shola’s mum, Jake’s wife, and my wife have all sent home made cake into the work. The team always appreciated this particularly as it has the personal touch.