Tips for Relationship Building in Corporate America

Relationships in the workplace are crucial to framing your career path. One study found that 85% of why people get, retain, or advance in their job is because of people skills while only 15% has to do with their technical skills/job knowledge. Relationships can be the reason you have additional motivation to get up and go to work, or they can be the reason you want to avoid work and just lay in bed. Because of the massive impact they have on your life at work, it’s safe to say that it’s worth investing in your workplaces relationships if you want to experience a smoother career path. Here are some tips on how to make that happen.

Maintain authenticity

Be authentic in your interactions and take a genuine interest in people. It’s easy to walk around with a fake persona in today’s world but you’re not likely to last for long at a place where you can’t be your authentic self. What’s worse is that failing to be authentic can easily be sniffed out in your interactions and that’s not something you want.

Develop mutual respect through trust-building

Your authenticity can help you win over the trust of others in your professional network but don’t take advantage of that trust. Reinforce that you can be relied upon and win the respect of others through consistency in your actions and behaviours.

Learn to be vulnerable

While you don’t have to publicly announce the latest details of your life to everyone, you may find it easier to bond with others by getting personal. Humans are social beings and connecting on a personal level can go a long way in making sure relationships last and the workplace doesn’t seem robotic. You can even plan a fun event outside of work with your colleagues in an attempt to get to know them better.

Highlight shared values / goals

It’s easier to connect with someone when you can identify common values/goals that you share with them. You don’t have to seek out people who think like you, but it is important to identify those who share your values/goals to be able to create the foundation for long-lasting relationships. Discussions over meals, team activities, and even out-of-office activities can help you get an idea of who you share values/goals with.

Network

Networking can help to put you in touch with many professionals and open up career opportunities. There are numerous benefits that you can enjoy, including:

  • Having access to a variety of ideas
  • Being able to express your opinions
  • Expanding your network of support
  • Benefiting from career advancement
  • Experiencing a boost to your self-esteem

Brainstorm

Brainstorming is another great way to set aside some time to engage with ideas of different people and get stronger as a group at work. Take up a common issue at work and get everyone to pitch in with their ideas in a brainstorming session. Not only does it help to bring out more creativity, but it also creates a platform where people feel accepted and everyone is encouraged to express their ideas.

Learn to give

Don’t make calculated cost-benefit analyses before helping someone out at work – everything doesn’t have to be turned into a competition or office politics. Put the Machiavellian attitude to rest and learn to be a giver. Others are a lot more likely to help you out when you need it if you’ve put efforts into maintaining your relationship with them.

Numerous mistakes may hamper your relationships in the workplace, but making use of these tips can help you strive towards building lasting relationships in the corporate world.

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