We spend so much time at work, so it’s only logical that we should be on good terms with our coworkers. A working relationship isn’t as intimate as a romantic one, but it still has a major impact on our lives.
Let’s be honest, when you get a new job, you first try and figure out who your coworkers are. The moment you walk through that office door, you start getting to know the people you work with.
As a social creature, you need to have a positive working environment in order to complete your tasks successfully. You need to know that you can trust your team members and that they’ll have your back when you need it the most.
The number of people who leave their jobs because of a toxic working environment is constantly growing. This makes total sense, though, as we’re not able to work in conditions where we don’t feel respected and appreciated. In those moments, arriving at the office feels like the death penalty.
If you’re starting a new job or starting to feel like you and your colleagues don’t get along the way you used to, then you’re probably wondering if there’s something you can do to improve your relationship. There must be something to make it easier to spend all that time together.
How to build a good working relationship?
Good working relationships will make you more productive and increase that sense of belonging in a certain team. We all want to feel like a part of the community, and it’s the same when we’re at work. You want to know that your coworkers consider you one of theirs and that they will protect you when needed.
So, here’s what you can do to improve the relationships you have with other people you work with. From your team members to managers and your boss, you want to have a good and stable relationship with all of them. And here’s how you can achieve it.
1. Effective communication
The same with every type of relationship, communication will always be the key. Even though we’re talking about professional relationships right now, it’s equally important to communicate what you feel.
If you don’t feel comfortable doing something, say it out loud. If you believe that you have a great idea that could improve the project, don’t be afraid to speak. Whenever you have something to say, you should say it in front of your team or responsible members of it.
Your good communication skills will prove to others that you’re a trustworthy person and that they can rely on you. It will show them that you’re not going to go behind their back. Whenever you have an issue, you’re going to try and solve it by communicating.
And if you stumble upon a misunderstanding with a coworker, have a face-to-face chat with them. If you work remotely, then at least send them a direct message and try to solve the disagreement that way.
In your whole professional career, you’ll come across different people with completely different personalities. Some of them will become your best friends even outside of work, while others will keep pushing your buttons till the day you resign.
But what matters the most is that, no matter what, you should have healthy communication with them. Even when you feel like they’ve crossed your boundaries, let them know that in a calm and collected manner.
Trust me, effective communication will be your saving grace.
2. Avoid gossiping
While we’re on the topic of communication, let’s get this out of the way: Avoid gossiping at all costs.
Even if you find yourself surrounded by gossipers, make sure not to interfere, and if possible, try to change the subject. You may think that you’re sharing an opinion with like-minded people, but in reality, the coworker you’re talking about will sooner or later find out about the things you said. And that’s only going to make the situation worse.
That’s why it’s best to stay quiet, even when you’re facing disagreements with a certain person. Keep your relationship professional and steer clear of talking behind anyone’s back. It’s unhealthy and will only create unnecessary drama.
3. Provide support to your team members
We all want to feel appreciated at work. We want to know that we’re doing a great job and that our coworkers notice all the effort we put in. And you know the saying: Be the change you wish to see in the world!
You know how great it feels when someone compliments you on the task you finished. So, why wouldn’t you start doing the same for others?
Be there for your team members and don’t forget to provide them with words of encouragement. We all need support, especially when we’ve been working on a task for a while.
At one point, you may lose your grip and start to worry if you’re headed in the right direction. And that’s when you need your coworker’s encouragement the most.
Make sure your new team member knows he’s doing an amazing job. Let your manager know that you appreciate all of his help. Ensure your coworkers know how great it is to work with them.
Be there for your colleagues, and you’ll see a huge change in the quality of your working relationships.
4. Show your team they can trust you
When working in teams, we need to be reassured that we can fully trust our team members. We need to know that we can rely on them whenever we need help or advice.
So, it’s important to build trust and prove to your coworkers you’ll never betray them. Even when things get hard, and you all start stressing out about the upcoming deadline, you still need to know that you’re there for each other.
Sometimes, just knowing we can count on someone takes off half of the load.
5. Deliver your work on time
You can’t build a good working relationship with your coworkers if you constantly fail to prove to them that they can rely on you. If you’re late with each task you’re assigned and if someone else constantly needs to finish your job, your team members won’t feel like you’re pulling your weight.
So, one of the most important things you can do for your team is to deliver your work on time. This will prove to others that you’re committed and consistent. And these two things will be the foundation of a solid work relationship.
Each relationship comes with its responsibilities. Think about it: When romantically involved with someone, you’re expected to respect the person you love. In a friendship, you should be there for your friend in both good and bad, so they know they can always rely on you.
In a working relationship, you need to prove to the rest of your team that you’re a valuable asset and that you’ll never fail to finish your tasks on time. If you achieve this, your coworkers will definitely appreciate your efforts.
6. Stay positive even if you’re stressing out
Each job can get stressful. Working with different types of people, keeping up with tasks, and making sure you don’t make any serious mistakes – it can get the best of us. That’s why it’s so important to keep up your spirits. This will affect not only you but also your working relationships with other coworkers.
So, make sure to stay positive even when nothing seems to be working the way you expected it to. Your good mood will affect your colleagues and they will follow your lead.
Think about it this way. If you had to choose, would you rather follow the lead of a grumpy guy who always seems to have something negative to talk about, or the guy with a contagious laugh who always seems to find the best in each situation? I think the choice is obvious.
Why is it so important to improve your working relationships?
Firstly, a good relationship with your team members directly impacts the quality of your work. We all do better in situations where we’re surrounded by those we trust, and our job is no exception. When you know that your coworkers respect you and that you can communicate with them without problems, you’ll be more committed to the tasks.
Even when you run into an issue, you will be able to resolve it way faster. You know that you can trust each other and that you have each other’s back in any situation.
And what matters the most is that you all work together to reach your final goal and successfully complete tasks. Team members who quarrel all the time and who don’t know how to communicate effectively, spend way more time trying to handle conflicts.
In the meantime, teams with good working relationships are focused on professional development. They don’t sabotage each other but rather learn from their coworkers. By acting this way, they take themselves on a guaranteed road to growth and progress.