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Workplace Interaction

Author: Wesley Aleshire
Let’s explore the importance of workplace communications by highlighting how to create positive relationships in your workplace.

Let’s start with interactions with your co-workers. We’re talking about communication; obviously some of which will be non-verbal, such as a smile, a nod, or other small gestures like that. But we’re also talking about direct, good old fashioned, work banter, chatter, and water cooler talk!

First and foremost, talking with your co-workers. This could be the language you use around them or toward them. How can we harness the power of speaking with someone to improve workplace communication, create positive relationships, and show self-confidence? How about this for starters?

Good Morning!

Yes. Good Morning. The simplest, most basic form of a greeting you could offer to a co-worker could also be one of the most powerful, sparking positive emotions that starts the day off on the right foot.

Go ahead, give it a shot with someone close by. If you’re reading this in the afternoon or evening use that greeting instead.
During the summer of 2016 I decided to focus all my attention on my professional speaking career and my growing passion for online content development. Although I’ve spent the last 20 years with a focus on leadership, curriculum development and public speaking, I have a new-found passion for digital content development I realized that there was another need that fit closely in line with my primary area of expertise. The need for content development, not only my content development but the development needs of others. This was why I founded PMLDR and started offering content development as a consulting service.

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Did you smile while greeting them? If you smiled, you just helped usher in the second strategy for building and strengthening workplace relationships. Smile.

It’s not something we always feel like doing, but it’s beneficial in one way or another and will always pair well with that “Good Morning” greeting. You see, your smile makes you appear more approachable (even when through clenched teeth), and as a result, your co-workers might begin to feel more comfortable around you.

Another tactic which plays well into the morning greeting and smile technique, is the use of a person’s name. It seems like common knowledge but when we hear our own name in a positive tone, it spreads good feelings. Think about the last time someone approached you with a bit of anger or distaste in their voice and called you out specifically by name… then think about how you felt.
   
Maybe a little intimidated. You might’ve felt like lashing out yourself even.

If you want to have a little fun while reading this article, turn to the person on either side of you. Smile at them, and say, “Good Morning” but use their name. Don’t know them? Congratulations, you’re about to make a new friend!

On the topic of new friends, whoever said you couldn’t be friends with your co-workers. In fact, many say being helpful and friendly with those you work with, makes for a more productive workplace! Be a friend. Especially to the person you just met.

With friendship comes different traits as well. One of which is being cordial. The two don’t necessarily need one another to work, I suppose you could and should be cordial to everyone you interact with, especially in a workplace setting. But when you’ve become friends, that interaction is more genuine and in turn, more productive.
Something else to consider in your daily workplace interactions, and this is a big one, is to give praise often. No one likes to only hear about what they’ve done wrong. Don’t go into the break room and sarcastically congratulate “Doug” on blowing the big deal. Instead, talk to Doug about what you thought made his proposal great! It’ll go a long way with him, and when others see this, they’ll be more inclined to follow suit. There’s always going to be a time to be critical, but let your praise come more frequently.
 
Besides, you don’t know what Doug might be going through at home, and that’s why empathy is an excellent tool when it comes to relationship building in the workplace. Put yourself in Doug’s shoes. Maybe home life isn’t great at the moment and it’s spilling over into his career.
 
By the way, this is purely hypothetical. So, if you know someone with the name “Doug”, this isn’t him… or is it?
 
Let “Doug”, or this co-worker know that you’re there for them. Better yet, be there for them without them needing to ask.
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