Good Work Relationships Are Key To Your Success

cartoon-businessman-with-right-mark.jpgI’ve been in the workforce for some time now and believe me when I tell you that we all have a different way of working and it’s likely that you’ve had strained relationships with your colleagues.  However this doesn’t mean that we are bad employees, it’s simply a fact that we couldn’t get along with every single person in the previous companies we use to work for. We all have to rely on each other to finish reports, close a deal, and there will certainly be cross wires and disagreements.

When arguments start, many try to disengage- to avoid the person in the office or limit contact to them. That’s all right if your colleague plays a marginal role to your daily routines at work. But if it happens to be your manager or someone in your finance department, ignoring them is a losing strategy. Check out our 4 steps to help you mend a professional relationship that’s gone off track.

Step 1
Recognize that making an effort is worthwhile
Resolving tension will actually aid your own productivity at work. A core view of efficiency is closing open loops. Eliminating unresolved matters that nag at your mind. Just as you can’t rest easy until you respond to that scheduling request, you’ll have a much harder time focusing professionally if you’re constantly in the midst of conflict with your coworkers.

Step 2
Recognize your own faults

It’s easy to diminish your coworker. But you’re almost certainly contributing to the dynamic in some way, as well. Sometimes we tend to focus so much on the negative things we start behaving in ways that could make matters worse. If you think your colleague is too quiet, you may be filling up the airtime in meetings, which encourages them to become even quieter. To get anywhere, you have to understand your role in the situation.

Step 3
Time to press reset

If you independently decide you’re going to rescue your relationship with your colleague, you’re prone to be disappointed.  It has to come from both sides. The minute they fail to respond to a positive approach or yet again demonstrate an irritating behavior, you may end up with the sense that your effort was wasted. Instead, try to make them a partner in your effort. You may want to find a “reason” for the conversation such as the start of a new project which gives you the opportunity to mention the subject.

Step 4
Finally, you need to change the dynamic

Even the best of intentions - including an agreement with your colleague to turn over a new page, can quickly fall apart if you go back to your old ways. In the outcome of a conflict, you should find a tool or method to record what you guys disagreed on, we suggest writing down the transcript. So you can begin to see patterns where you were pushing and he was pulling. Sooner or later, it’s likely that you’ll be able to grasp the big picture of how you’re communicating to each other and areas where you can try something different.

Work relationships can't move forward when they stay stuck in the past. Don't dwell on what happened before or mention the problem again when attempting to repair a professional relationship. Be patient because it takes time. Staying focused on the future and understanding the dynamics of the relationship and making changes to what’s not working. This can lead to positive results in the workplace.

If you are in the market for a new job, let us start a professional relationship today!