What this looks like:
Demonstrates empathy, respect and genuine concern for others
Understands relationships are long-term investments and not short-lived gestures for immediate gain
Easily gains trust and support from people at all levels across the organization
Is team-oriented and can quickly find common ground to solve problems together
Find the point of connection. A point of connection is a commonality that you have with someone else to help you get to know them personally e.g., you both play soccer, you both have a newborn daughter, you both grew up and have family back in Staten Island
Try this: Use these questions from Tiny Pulse or The Muse to ask your colleagues questions to help identify shared interests or experiences you may have. In future conversations, recall the discussion and ask for updates e.g., Have you played soccer lately? How’s your daughter doing/Is she crawling yet? When’s the next time you’re going back home to visit?
Provide a heads up. Information that gives you an upper hand is helpful. When we’re the last to know, we feel slighted, but when we’re given it early, we appreciate the sender.
Try this: Proactively give share useful information (where appropriate) to people who would benefit from the heads up. Providing this information establishes trust and the recipient will feel that you have their best interest in mind. e.g., I just got out of a meeting about the new project. I didn’t see anyone from your team there. I thought you may want to know about it because it may potentially affect your world.
Give a genuine compliment. Many times we think positively about someone, but that thought never reaches their ears. People feel inclined to a person when they receive unsolicited compliments from them. Also, everyone gets a morale boost from a compliment, even if they feel awkward receiving them.
Try this: The next time you are thinking something positive about a colleague, let him/her know e.g., you’re really good at excel, I like your shoes, you’re so organized, you’re really good at what you do, etc.
Agree on something. People naturally like other people who agree with them and are on their side. There are simple words you can use more often to explicitly show you support their viewpoints and gets the other person to like you more.
Try this: The next time you’re in conversation where you agree with the person’s ideas, explicitly say words to show it e.g., you’re right, that makes a lot of sense, I agree with you
Resources to Learn More
The Fast Company: The Five Biggest Mistakes You’re Making with Work Relationships by Ken Blanchard and Scott Blanchard
Glassdoor: 8 Ways to Cultivate Better Work Relationships in 2018 by Amy Elisa Jackson
FYI For Your Improvement by Michael Lombardo & Robert Eichinger - Chapter 4: Boss Relationships
FYI For Your Improvement by Michael Lombardo & Robert Eichinger - Chapter 42: Peer Relationships,
FYI For Your Improvement by Michael Lombardo & Robert Eichinger - Chapter 64: Understanding Others
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
Kellogg Insight: Our Most Popular Advice on Improving Relationships with Colleagues by Jessica Love (16m 16s)
People and Projects Podcast: How to Improve Relationships in the Workplace by Andy Kaufman and guest Todd Davis
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