Millennials · Personal Growth

12 Ways To Build Healthy Workplace Relationships

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It’s so important to build healthy workplace relationships. Whether you work for an employer or you are an employer, it’s a major deal. In fact, building relationships can be considered a major part of success for one’s career.

When building workplace relationships, you’re not only contributing to harnessing a positive work environment, but this has the potential to increase productivity and overall job satisfaction as well.  Even if you’re someone who dislikes your job, if you have a good work environment and if you have good relationships, you’re going to enjoy it.

It’s as simple as that. 

Having good relationships with your team helps in fostering long-term professional relationships, improves your reputation, but it can also help with networking. In this article, you’ll learn all about the importance of workplace relationships and some helpful tips for creating some yourself.

What Are Work Relationships?

Great work relationships have to be genuine

Simply put, these are interactions that you have amongst your colleagues. Building positive work relationships can help you out with guidance and encouragement through your role and it can really help with your career.

Do you have to be friends with your colleagues?

Not necessarily. While it’s always great making friends with coworkers, it’s not something that needs to be required. But you should maintain a friendly yet professional relationship with your colleagues.

Elements Of A Good Work Relationship?

It’s very helpful to understand some of the elements of what makes a good work-related relationship. Some of the elements will include

  • Acceptance
  • Understanding
  • Good communication
  • Trust
  • Positivity
  • Transparency

While there are other important elements that contribute to making a good work relationship, these are some of the key defining ones. And try to avoid being judgmental as well. Overall, you’re going to want to be friendly. Your aim doesn’t need to be making your team into your friends, that’s only an added benefit. The goal is to create and foster positive relationships.

Tips To Build Workplace Relationships

If you’re wanting to begin building solid and strong work relationships but don’t know where to begin, then these tips are going to help you out!  It’s just important to keep in mind that you should come off as genuine, non-pushy,

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Show Interest In Others’ Work

Whether this is just a casual conversation or a team meeting, you should try to ask questions. This is going to allow others to know that you’re listening and well engaged in what they’re saying. People enjoy being listened to, they know you respect them. But it’s also flattering to show your engagement through questions. 

Coworkers sharing a break together

Plus, whenever you’re asking questions, you’re showing others that you’re interested in the work they do, you’re demonstrating how much you care.  This may seem small but a little can go a long way.

Know Your Strengths & Weaknesses

One of the very first things you should do before you begin focusing on developing new workplaces relationships would include understanding yourself. Understanding yourself is going to help you massively in relationship building!

How so?

Getting to know yourself and figuring out where some of your weaknesses lie will help. These can be improved on.  When you’re developing relationships with others you’re going to have to be actively effective at communication, actively listening, conflict resolution, and so much more. These all will assist you in initiating workplace relationships. 

So, what are the positives you can bring to the new workplace? What are some weaknesses that could be improved on? Getting to know yourself more will help improve your social skills, it helps with improving your empathy, it helps with self-awareness and self-regulation too.

Offer Assistance

A great way to boost relationships with your colleagues would be by taking off some of the burdens that they’re facing. Do you see them struggling with a project or task? Why not ask if they need some help? 

Trust is a major part when it comes to building relationships, by offering your help, you’re breaking down walls that will help them out in trusting you. Always try to demonstrate this quality. It shows that you’re compassionate, and this is a major boost for building relationships.

Contribute To A Positive Work Environment

See if you can get active in the office and look into ways to help or chip in. Maybe you can ask leadership or management about taking on more work.

Look into attending meets and make suggestions such as bringing in employee recognition software, or even ask if you could plan events outside of work such as a happy hour. Showing that you care and showing that you’re contributing can speak volumes.

Don’t Overwork Yourself

Work as hard as you want with your job, but when it comes to fostering relationships, it’s best to try to not work too hard on this. Why? You don’t want to come off as a try-hard to too desperate.

A line of sprinkled donuts

That’s going to make you seem very ungenuine, fake, and even less trusting.  So avoid trying to be pushy at this. Just be patient and take your time with developing relationships. 

You can try to do small things here and there such as bringing food to work for your coworkers (something small such as doughnuts for breakfast), a Christmas or birthday card, while these are a couple of ideas small gestures can go a long way.

Make Time For Developing Relationships

Taking time out to build relationships can increase your knowledge by so much.  Sometimes the daily expectations of work can make it difficult to even say hello to someone. But it’s so important to try and squeeze in some time somewhere.

Even just taking out 10 minutes each day can make a massive difference in your relationship-building and communication skills. This can be during your 15-minute break, lunch break, the first or last 10 minutes of the workday, or whenever you have some additional time. Just try to take some time out of your schedule for this.

Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help

Trust is a two-way street. You can’t just expect others to trust you and you do not trust them. Having independence and self-reliability is great but sometimes it’s better to just ask for some assistance.

By asking for help you’re going to have the chance to get to know a coworker much better. Plus, if you’re already offered assistance to coworkers in the past, you’re very likely to receive assistance as well. It’s just something that you can totally embrace. Let your coworkers know that you trust them by letting them bring their expertise to the field.

Don’t Take Things Personally

If someone is in the office, no matter if your team members, manager, boss, whoever, and they’re in a bad mood, try to not let this affect you. The same can be said for criticism as well, it’s something that you shouldn’t let get to you.

Coworkers hanging out near a tulip field outside of work

If you’re receiving feedback, and it’s negative, it’s best to think with a logical and professional perspective on it. It can be a bit difficult to not want to get emotional or defensive. It’s something that can be incredibly difficult. But not everything in the workplace should be taken personally, to begin with.

Always Keep Your Commitments

This also includes doing what you say you’re going to do.  Real-life is not like The Sims video game. It takes a lot of time and a lot of hard work to develop relationships, and it’s going to take a lot longer to build trust. Trust is something that is hard to gain and can easily be lost. 

If you tell your coworker that you’re going to do something, you better do it.

Always keep to your commitments as this speaks volumes about the type of person you are. You need to let your team know that you’re reliable. But it’s also very important to be realistic with yourself too. If someone at work has major expectations of you, be direct if your schedule is just far too busy.

Always Be Kind

Kindness can go a long way, and it’s something that’s going to drastically make people’s day better as well.  Showing your kindness is one of the best ways you can build a connection with anybody.

Build Your Team Up

Building healthy workplace relationships is a must for an awesome career.

This can include recognizing their roles at work and how important their role is to the team, but this can include compliments here and there. Just be sincere and let them know that you see the amazing work that they’re doing.

Always Give Your Full Attention

If a coworker is talking to you, you should give them your full attention. This is going to be a major sign of respect. It’s true that we live in an age of continuous distractions. The main culprit of all the distractions is our phones, right? 

No matter how brief the conversation is with your teammate, always give them that moment of your full undivided attention. It makes them feel important and it shows that you respect what they have to say. 

This is just the beginning of building healthy workplace relationships. Remember to be genuine to work co-workers. That definitely goes further in the long run. Let us know any more workplace friendship tips you have in the comments below!

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