12 Ways to Build Relationships at Work

by James on August 29, 2008

How are your work relationships? Not so good? Well truth be told, they could probably use some help. And better relationships at work make you more productive and, what’s even more important, help you be happier as well.

Think about us old geezers did before the internet, before email, before IM. We talked to each other, sometimes on the phone and quite frequently in person. Isn’t that amazing.

Do you think the growth of online social networks is because the technology is cool?  Nope. It’s because human nature pushes us to be part of a community. While the internet allows us to communicate and interact virtually, which is very efficient, we’re losing the opportunities for interpersonal, face-to-face communication, which is very dull.

Work Relationships Matter

Actually meeting a person, spending time with them, listening to what they say and watching how they say it, solidifies relationships in ways that, hopefully, technology will never duplicated.  This can be a huge help when the inevitable problems or issues arise and others need to be counted on to take care of things.

Hip Shot

If you are part of a team and/or have clients/vendors with whom you work, make the effort to create face-to-face interaction opportunities. Here are 12 suggestions:

  1. Don’t IM or call or email, walk to their desk.
  2. Schedule a meeting out of the office, in a park or a bar.
  3. Travel to the client’s office once a month.
  4. Schedule periodic, face-to-face team meetings or status meetings.
  5. Take a direct report or your boss to lunch.
  6. Schedule a meeting where the employees at your level get together.
  7. Celebrate staff birthdays with a monthly pizza party.
  8. Take the team to an art gallery or go to a baseball game.
  9. Invite another department to lead a discussion on what they do.
  10. Invite the folks in other departments to come see what you do.
  11. Share your work with other teams.
  12. Invite someone from another department for coffee.

What are some of yours?

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