Co-Worker Relationships That Work

No man is an island!  Unless you’re living in a cave, you’ll probably work with other people at some point in your life. In fact, workplace interactions can be interesting and enjoyable. Or they can be disappointing and frustrating. Your experience of them is entirely up to you.

Practicing particular behaviors and applying certain techniques in the workplace will help you manage work relationships successfully.

The following tips will help you discover the tenets of colleague relationships that work:

  1. Strive to love your work.  Every morning, take a conscious effort and decision to learn to love what you do. Whether you’re a customer service representative, IT technician, or a small business owner, learn to love your work. If you do these, perhaps your associates will notice you have a true passion for what you do.  Surely, they’ll develop great respect for you.
  2. Vow to be optimistic when discussing work situations with your colleagues. You’ve probably worked with a negative co-worker in the past.  And you’ve seen the impact of such attitudes. But don’t allow yourself to be pulled down into negativity.  Always keep your positivity high. If you’re consistently optimistic, your colleagues will follow suit.
  3. Set a motivating example for your co-workers. Show interest in work projects.  You may ask questions and demonstrate a strong work ethic.
  4. Be proactive in addressing any difficult issues with your associates. Work in conjunction with them to solve any troublesome situations early in their development.
  1. Step up to meet work challenges. Show confidence that your colleagues will do the same. It never hurts to have a “we’re all in this together” attitude at work.
  2. Negotiate work differences cheerfully and honestly. Speak from your genuine feelings and use tact in your communication. Those you work with will see your honesty and recognize your integrity.  They may even strive to interact with you the same way.
  1. Keep it “short and sweet.” If you’re succinct and clear in your questions and responses, your co-workers will appreciate your efficiency.
  2. Listen intently when someone is talking to you. A great tip is training yourself to be a good listener.  This is integral to effective relationships, whether at home or work. Avoid interrupting others at all costs. Recognizing your co-workers’ feelings is an important step to strengthening your relationships.
  1. Although you may be extremely motivated, allow other co-workers to shine, too. Give credit where credit is due. Compliment your colleagues openly within earshot of others. Always remind yourself that praising them doesn’t threaten your work persona in any way. In fact, positivity about others only enhances how people see you.
  2. Avoid joining in with co-workers who show negativity. It’s no good to anyone if you engage in negative comments or give credibility to such discussions. It is better to spend your precious time elsewhere! 
  1. Learn to let go of past hurts and struggles with your associates. No real accomplishments can be achieved through holding onto old baggage. Letting go will bring you great relief. Plus, your relationships with those individuals will be on the road to recovery when you decide to let go.
  2. Be supportive of others.  Show true interest and involvement in what they’re doing. Keep in mind that everyone thirsts for recognition. Being supportive shows you care about your co-workers and enhances your relationships.

As a reminder, having work relationships that actually work is within your reach. Apply the above strategies. These will help to establish and maintain positive relationships with your fellow workers. Developing effective co-worker relationships leads you down the path to true personal and professional growth.