11 Nov

November Blog: The Importance of Work Relationships

The Importance of Work Relationships

The workplace has become an intertwined mecca of complicated relationships. It is no longer possible to be successful without eliciting the help or assistance from countless others in an effort to get our jobs done well. All that being said, many of us don’t put a lot of energy or effort into building those relationships. We get caught up in our own world. We all know to have strong family and friend relationships requires an investment of time and energy to maintain them. What we fail to recognize is we have to also nurture our business relationships if we want to have a solid network long term. I am not suggesting that you will like everyone that you work with or that you have to go out to lunch daily or for drinks with your fellow workers every week. However, what I am saying is that you are in a relationship when you are at work and like any other relationship it requires investment of time and energy. So how can you maximize your relationships at work?  There are some simple things you can do to help develop and maintain them:

  1. Recognize your peers. Nothing builds loyalty more than recognizing a peer’s work. It takes nothing away from you to compliment someone else.
  2. If you are working with remote employees who you depend on daily, schedule time on your calendar for 15 minutes a week to just talk about anything to get to know them better on a personal level.
  3. Remember people’s work anniversary and birthdays. I am not talking about balloons or gifts just acknowledgement. This may seem fluffy but those are two days out of the year that people want to be remembered.
  4. Be consistent.  People need to know they can trust and depend on you. Do what you say you will do and when you can’t deliver tell them why.
  5. Ask for help.  Asking others for help shows humility and also conveys to the other person that you respect and value their opinion.
  6. Go out of your way to help when you don’t have to.  Being the one that shows a willingness to pitch in particularly when someone else is in dire need goes a very long way.
  7. Get away from your desk. Get involved in social activities outside of work to get to know other people outside of your immediate area.
  8. Be present. Give people your full attention when they come to you.
  9. Ask for a do over.  If you aren’t happy with an interaction that you have had with someone acknowledge it as quickly as possible and ask them for a do over to make it right.
  10. Be authentic. Trying to be something that you aren’t is a turn off. Accept yourself for your strengths as well as your weaknesses.