Our goal for work shouldn’t be to please everyone. We can’t. However, since we might work with a number of people on common goals, it matters that we get along to do so. If you’re feeling out of synch with coworkers, take a step back to understand more about your day-to-day working dynamics and how you contribute, or possibly detract from, your common goals and just getting along with people. Like it or not, being liked at work often equates to respect, being able to network, getting things done and getting fair credit for the work you do.
Ask questions of the team and listen to results. Don’t ask a question in order to provide the answer – a more common speech pattern than we realize. Don’t interrupt, people notice and it irks them. Don’t just listen long enough to supply your own answer. Listen, consider, ask additional questions.
Give Credit & Thank People
This simple act can be contagious, just as contagious as a work environment where everyone is trying to showcase their own work to get ahead. When to thank people? Morning meetings, highlight what is going well and how issues were smoothed out by the intervention and assistance from a coworker. Thank someone for going an extra step, thank them for training you or handling something that isn’t your best talent. Surprise people with credit and gratitude. Giving credit to make others feel appreciated and everyone likes knowing their efforts are worthwhile. When that happens, it creates an ongoing desire to help out more.
Don’t Just Say Yes
Be honest about what you can accomplish and why. As women, we’re often trained to please everyone and saying yes falls into that trap. We don’t need to say yes, we need to follow through. Overpromising can lead to your co-workers having to fill in at the last minute to make deadlines or to make the team look better when a failure is imminent. Don’t put people in a position to have to cover for you just because you wanted to be nice and say yes. Saying no is a powerful tool. Learn to use it and explain why, such as time and resource constraints that might make it impossible.
When You Must Say No, See If There Is Another Option
Sometimes another resource can be found to help with tasks. Sometimes something might have a deadline that isn’t realistic or required. Bring in a project manager to better understand what’s absolutely necessary for a specific deadline.
Work Is Never All About Work
Coffee breaks, elevator rides, waiting for meetings to start, all of these tiny interactions are filled with small talk. Take an interest in co-workers lives and remember it. When someone is going through a family illness or heading on vacation, remembering to ask about what is going on in their life is important. It’s not all about work, it’s about building relationships and these thirty second to two minute conversations matter.
Destress Yourself and Others
Sometimes work can be stressful and there’s no way around it. Noticing your coworkers stress level is important. If things are too heavy and start to seem overwhelming, try and break the pattern. Be realistic, but remind a coworker that it’s a tough patch
Don’t Gossip, Just Don’t
Organizational changes are one thing, however we all know the difference between professional discussions about work versus harping on a person for personal habits, dress, or even how they choose to do their job. Gossip is a type of bullying. It attempts to hurt people by getting others to share negative opinions about another’s reputation. Just don’t. It makes you look untrustworthy, distracted and disinterested in your work. A person will figure out if you’re gossiping viciously about one person, you’ll do it about others as well. No one likes a bully and no one trusts a gossip.
Built People Up, Don’t Tear Down
Related to no gossip. Think about your coworkers and how you’d like to be recognized for your work. This single act is contagious in work environments and help build and define the type of setting in which you work. So, you choose – a positive, grateful environment, or one where everyone takes credit, self promotes and back stabs. You’re part of a chain, don’t be the weak link, be an example.