Building Relationships at Work: Strategies for Connecting with Colleagues and Building a Supportive Network

Who can deny the importance of building good work relationships? Past is when you didn’t even know the person’s name in the next cubicle or office. The Post-Covid world has further highlighted the need to connect with other humans during work. Even the complexity of the tasks nowadays demands an exceptional network among colleagues. Knowing how to connect with your peers and building a professional, supportive network will give you countless competitive advantages.


Strategies For Connecting And Building A Supportive Network

Rather than going for hit-and-trial schemes, you can follow some fantastic basic strategies to build an excellent office team.

1.      Try Active Listening

You can connect with your peers and colleagues through excellent communication skills and trust. One of the best ways to achieve both is through active listening. Listening to your teammates’ words and responding creates a solid foundation. Furthermore, non-verbal cues and being receptive to your colleagues’ thoughts help build solid work relationships. For example, suppose your colleague is discussing some work-related issue with you. In that case, you should focus entirely on him rather than looking at your smartphone or laptop screen with half an ear on his conversation. 

2.      Know What You Want From Your Colleagues

Knowing your mind is vital to creating an effective supportive workplace network. Do you like to take a happy-hour break after completing work or during working mode? What do you expect your colleagues to provide regarding their skillset or expertise? Also, consider what you can give back to your peers or teammates. This requires understanding your strengths and weaknesses. You should know how to be a constructive part of an office network and when to ask for your colleagues’ help in a challenging working spot.

3.      Stick To Your Commitments

You can connect with your colleagues constructively by honoring your commitments. If you commit to doing a task on a specific deadline, finish it on time. It will make you a reliable and thoroughly valuable working team member. If you can’t fulfill your commitments, inform your office peers or employers immediately so they can finish your left task quickly.

4.      Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

Work, work, and work! It alone doesn’t help build a strong supportive network in a working environment. You should branch out as a peer by stepping out of your comfort zone, especially if you like to stay in the background, avoiding socializing. For instance, you can schedule a coffee with your colleagues to get to know each other. Even a virtual coffee cup can make much difference in building positive team connections. You can’t connect with your peers without giving up your shyness or hesitancy. Over time, mingling and socializing will come naturally to you.

5.      Avoid Complaining Unnecessarily

Ups and downs come in every workplace, challenging work or poor personalities of your colleagues. Avoid being a chronic complainer when things get complicated. Try to see the positive in every work-related situation instead of complaining constantly. Always look for ways to get along with even the most difficult peers by finding the good in them. Complaining to management about a teammate you dislike will surely get you on the unliked list, so it’s best to micro-manage yourself with patience and positivity.

6.      Set clear boundaries

Yes! You read it right. Workplace relationship boundaries! You should invest in them by balancing “a healthy work relationship” and “too much socializing.”Because at the end of the day, you’re still at work. You can only create a supportive network when you clearly communicate your need to focus on work instead of socializing with others. This will help you healthily connect with your office mates.

7.      Show Your Appreciation

You don’t need to go to great lengths to show appreciation to your peers or colleagues. How often do you feel let down by your peers when your work is not fully acknowledged? You should take the first step by complimenting your colleagues on their work or sending them thank-you notes. Your positive gestures won’t go unnoticed. Thus, you can connect positively with your co-workers and build a supportive network by being grateful and showing appreciation.

8.      Avoid Gossiping

Talking for the sake of constructive actions at the workplace is always welcome, but gossiping is not good. It will push your sincere peers away and divide the whole office peers into different groups, breaking their harmony and effectiveness as a team. Remember, office politics and gossip bring negative emotions to the office environment. You can’t build an excellent support team in this way. Avoid gossiping in the office to allow genuine relationships to blossom, ultimately uniting the workforce.

In Conclusion

A great workplace team requires positive energy and good peers. You should keep yourself open to connecting with other individuals, whether your peers or your employers. Negative attitudes and actions create a poor working environment and, ultimately, a divided workforce. Those who are always ready to tear each other apart rather than working together to achieve some grand goal. Follow positive work strategies to build an excellent support network.

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