It’s a fact – we’re likely to spend more face-to-face time with our co-workers than we do with those closest to us. Think about it: a typical 40-hour working week can see us spend upto 2,000 hours together! This is definitely enough time to discover each others’ ins and outs – quickly learning personalities, quirks, and habits. Most importantly, this time spent together is a positive in discovering how we can become a better, and more respected co-worker.
Whilst every work environment is different, forming strong connections with those we spend the majority of our day-to-day with, is one key to success. Here’s our top tips in becoming a better co-worker – and creating a lasting relationship in the process:
1. Show appreciation
Compliments go a long way – especially when they are loaded with affirmations that are positive, and heartfelt. Creating memorable actions can be one way to cement a relationship. How? Take the time to be aware, and note things that a co-worker has done for you, or the teams benefit – and then show them some love, baby!
Just think: would you be more inclined to help out a co-worker that showed appreciation for something that you have done for them in the past?
2. Share your knowledge
One of the best ways to demonstrate being a better co-worker is to share your knowledge – be generous with what you know! Remember, knowledge is power... Through sharing, this sends our teams a signal that we are genuine in our actions. It also allows others to recognise us as a generous team player – all by being selfless in sharing our time, and skill. Being a resource for our peers could come from imparting knowledge from a conference you’ve just attended, or as simple as sharing topical podcasts and articles around the office.
As a wise soul once said: “Knowledge is power. Knowledge shared is power multiplied."
3. Be humble
Being humble doesn't mean you’re selling yourself short, or letting yourself go. Quite the opposite… it confirms that we are self-aware, showing confidence and strength in our emotions – which is a sure-fire sign of emotional intelligence. By allowing ourselves to be humble, we are giving ourselves space to recognise our own limitations and shortcomings – further opening up the floor to meaningful relationships with co-workers. How? For example, if you don’t know the answer, or don’t think there could be a better idea out there – pose the question to those around you. Why? This signals to your colleagues that you’re open to ideas, giving them a chance to feel involved.
4. Have quality conversations
Small talk is great, especially when we’re meeting someone for the first time – it’s a great way to start a conversation, but it has a time and place. Get to know your co-workers a little better, and show some interest in their life that happens outside of the office! Think of it like peeling back the onion… the more layers you peel off, the more of each others personalities are revealed. Whilst keeping it professional, take the conversation a little deeper, and follow-up! How can we do this? Ask about a co-workers plans for the weekend, and check back in next week – and YES you’d absolutely love to see pictures when asked.
5. Break up with office habits
We all got ‘em! Habits form a large part of our day – and sometimes, we might not even be aware how they’re affecting the team around us. Could it be something simple as checking your phone during a group meeting, eating at your desk, or being regularly late to the office? The list could go on. But… what are our habits? How do we know? Compiling a simple list can help us recognise these – consult a friend, and ask about their pet office peeves, or even a quick good search could suffice. Keeping this list in mind, allow yourself to notice how these might come up in your day – and reconsult the list by noting down your solution. By doing so, it’s a small way to enhance our office credibility, and allow others to relate to us – without annoying habits coming in the way.