How to Build Good Work Relationships
As you’ll know from your oldest friends, building close connections with people can take time. But there are also steps you can take today to get on better with your colleagues.
- Identify Your Relationship Needs
Do you know what you need from others? And do you know what they need from you? Understanding these needs can be instrumental in building better relationships.
- Develop Your People Skills
Good relationships start with good people skills. Take our quiz How Good Are Your People Skills? to test how well you collaborate, communicate, and deal with conflict. The quiz will also point you toward useful tools to improve any weak areas.
- Focus on Your EI
Emotional intelligence EI) is your ability to recognize your own emotions, and better understand what they’re telling you. By developing your EI, you’ll become more adept at identifying and handling the emotions and needs of others.
- Practice Mindful Listening
People respond better to those who truly listen to what they have to say. By practicing mindful listening you’ll talk less and understand more. And you’ll quickly become known as trustworthy.
- Schedule Time to Build Relationships
If possible, you could ask a colleague out for a quick cup of coffee. Or give a “one-minute kindness” by commenting on a co-worker’s LinkedIn post you enjoyed reading. These little interactions take time but lay the groundwork for strong relationships.
- Manage Your Boundaries
Make time, but not too much! Sometimes, a work relationship can impair productivity, especially when a friend or colleague begins to monopolize your time. It’s important to set your boundaries and manage how much time you devote to social interactions at work.
- Appreciate Others
Everyone, from your boss to the intern, wants to feel that their work is appreciated. So, genuinely compliment the people around you when they do something well. Praise and recognition will open the door to great work relationships.
- Be Positive
Focus on being positive. Positivity is contagious and people gravitate to those that make them feel good.
- Avoid Gossiping
Office politics and gossip can ruin workplace relationships. If you’re experiencing conflict with someone in your group, talk to them directly about the problem. Gossiping with other colleagues will only exacerbate the situation, accelerating mistrust and animosity.