Having trouble getting along with some of your coworkers? Don’t feel bad. Most people at some time in their career run across a peer (or several) that they just can’t seem to work with. If you’re in this situation, there is plenty you can do to build rapport with less-than-pleasant coworkers.
Build Better Relationships with Your Coworkers: 4 Tips
1) Avoid gossip in the workplace — Gossiping is never a good idea, especially in the workplace. If there is a specific peer you dislike, the worst thing you can do is discuss him or her with another coworker. This is both unprofessional and doesn’t promote goodwill. Save the venting for when you get home.
2) Kill them with kindness — Being nice consistently, even when someone is unkind to you, is sometimes the most powerful thing you can do to build better workplace relationships. If this doesn’t work after a period of time, you may need to confront the individual you have an issue with.
3) Stand up for yourself — Some people only better their treatment of you when confronted. “Sometimes the only way to get someone to back off is to show her what she’s doing. You’ve probably been told before not to sink to anyone’s level, but once in a while a bully needs a good kick in the shins. If you try this approach, explain why you did it. For example, ‘I shot down your idea in the meeting because that’s how you always speak to me. If you don’t like how that feels, maybe you shouldn’t do it to others,’ wrote a contributor to Monster.com. If this is ineffective, report the individual’s offensive behavior to a supervisor (but only as a last resort).
4) Check your manners — One of the best ways to build good workplace relationships is by ensuring your manners are good. It can be easy to let manners go out the window when you get used to your work environment. Polish your workplace etiquette by…
- Keeping phone calls quiet as to not distract others.
- Practicing good hygiene.
- Not hitting “reply all” to a group email if only one person needs to see your response (your coworkers will love you for this).
Building good relationships at work takes patience and practice, but it is worth the effort. If you’re struggling to get along with certain coworkers, remember to:
- Never gossip at work
- Be kind to difficult peers
- Confront difficult people when necessary
- Practice good manners
In what way(s) can you build better relationships with your coworkers starting today?