How to improve relationships with colleagues?

It’s not cool: 10 steps to improve relationships at work.

No one wants to be a black sheep on the team. People – a social creature: we need and important communication, including at work, where we spend a significant amount of time. Tense relations at work can lead to a number of problems, such as constant stress, emotional fatigue, and as a result – to a forced change of job. Why can not develop communication with colleagues and how to fix the situation? Compiled a step by step guide that can help.

⏱ Time to read – 7 minutes

Step 1: Look for the problem in yourself

If you’ve changed companies several times or moved several times within the same workplace and have experienced communication problems everywhere, it’s time to finally think about what’s wrong with me, why can’t I find common ground with people?

“When you analyze the situation, there are likely to be explanations: either you are not friendly in life, or you do not know how to ask questions, or do not provide feedback, or you are such a critic that everyone is tired of you, or a bad professional – says business coach Elena Kokhnenko . – There can be many reasons, but as long as a person does not analyze what is going on, things will not change.

Step 2: Ask an HR specialist, a psychologist, or your colleagues for help

Often it is an employee of the company’s HR department who observes the situation from the outside, which can help solve the problem of tense relations in the team. If there is a psychologist in your organization, do not hesitate to go to him with this question – it is not a “trivial story”, it is important to solve it, your career and condition in general depends on it.

You can also talk directly to your colleagues. Surely there will be those among them who will help and advise what is wrong. You can ask everyone’s opinion individually or gather some kind of round table to talk informally: buy sweets for tea and invite your colleagues to the meeting.

Step 3: Work through the personality traits

Once you have identified your weaknesses in Step 2, you can then ask your most trusted friends and colleagues the following question: What are my top five personality traits? After analyzing their answers, you will be able to develop your strengths and emphasize them in building relationships in the team.

“What do you think should be more actively developed – strengths or weaknesses? The right solution is to work on your strengths”, – says Elena Kokhnenko.

Step 4: Build a relationship map

This method is recommended by Elena Filyanova, an HR manager. Choose three to five people who have the greatest impact on your effectiveness at work. Schedule a meeting with them to ask what they lack from you at work: feedback, a positive outlook, responsiveness, engagement, and so on.

We recommend holding such meetings at least once a year, even if the relations with the team have improved – such sessions help calibrate the settings of internal processes, recheck the accuracy of interrelations, update work algorithms, clarify misunderstandings on non-work issues. After such conversations, relationships between colleagues tend to get much better, because you do not have to like each other, but you can agree with each other on how not to let down and not to irritate.

“During the meetings a lot of interesting things are revealed, – shares the experience Elena Filyanova . – For example, one employee thought he was mistreated in the team because he was not invited to dinner with them. It turned out that he was not invited, as he was very busy, and colleagues were sure that he would refuse. People often have their own mistaken view of the situation. And if it is not clarified, it will only become more complicated, hence the mutual insults, misunderstandings and claims.

Step 5: Participate in the corporate life of the company

Each person has his own perception of the world. It dictates our actions, which we perform based on our vision of the situation.

“Companies always employ people with different values. For some people it is work, they care exclusively about their department, their performance, they will not go home until they have done everything that is planned,” cites the example of coach Maria Zhirkova. – Others have a family and home: they continue to solve personal problems during the working day, they may leave early because of them, or take a day off. There is often conflict between these types of employees. That’s why many companies develop their personnel service in such a way that the personal values of employees unite the team”.

For this purpose, there are corporate events, where people can communicate outside of the work situation, understand each other’s motives, and discern in those who were irritated by their discordant views something that can be close. Enough talk with a colleague in an informal setting, and you find out that he, for example, is raising a daughter, the same age as yours, or you both like to travel by bicycle – you can always find common ground.

Step 6: be tolerant and loyal to your colleagues, accept their picture of the world

At the moment of deciding any issue, everyone gives arguments based on their values, dictated by their personal perception of the world. The ability to mute your own subjective opinion and to be loyal to the position of others is an invaluable quality for negotiations.

Step 7: Respect your colleagues and don’t violate their boundaries

Ilgiz Valinurov, the director of Business Connection personnel agency corporation, notes that the most common reason for conflicts and misunderstanding is that people do not try to build relationships with others. If you start valuing your colleagues not only as professionals, but also respect them as individuals, they will surely appreciate it.

Step 8: Make a list of good deeds

Any result is made up of small actions. “Everything complicated is broken down into simple things,” explains Ilgiz Valinurov . – “If you need to improve your relationship with a colleague, write a list of 5-10 points – what needs to be done.

Let’s say you don’t have a good relationship with your financial director. Here’s an example of a simple checklist to improve the situation:

  • Say hello politely in the morning, and remember to say goodbye in the evening;
  • Make a small, unobligatory gift – the just-released issue of the financial magazine;
  • Ask the CFO for advice – everyone likes to be perceived as an expert.

Step 9: Work with your expectations

According to Denis Rodionov, entrepreneur and business coach, relationships often fail when people have certain expectations of how they should be treated, but these expectations are systematically frustrated to no avail.

It is important to understand that people do not have to love you: they do as they feel is right and proper. “This issue is directly related to the development of a person’s personality,” says Denis Rodionov. – In an often-repeated scenario, an undeveloped personality finds himself in conflict with those around him, who signal to him that it’s time to change.” The more personally developed person, the lower his expectations of others: It is easier to find common ground with different people, compromise, resolve conflicts.

Step 10. Explore Psychotypes

All of us are different. And our psychotypes can’t help but affect the way we communicate and work – this is important to consider.

“For example, the rational person plans everything,” says human resources specialist Liya Sergeeva . – And the irrational acts according to circumstances. There is a difference between logicians, who try to structure their activities, and ethicists, who, like me, do not plan anything. These psychotypes can cooperate as well as conflict. A manager should bet on more responsible people, and irrationals need to designate deadlines, and then his rational colleague can influence the other with these reference points.

Sometimes there are different kinds of leaders on the same team – emotional, forceful and intellectual. But it is possible to separate them: the forceful one will lead and lead, and the emotional one will inspire and infect. If you put two emotional leaders or two power leaders on the same team and on the same task, then they will have to share areas of responsibility, otherwise they will fight.

According to Liya Sergeeva, each person has clear dominants. A manager needs to understand the psycho-type and strengths and weaknesses of an employee, and which part of the business processes can be entrusted to him. For example, a tactician is capable of managing projects, but not people.

To learn the psychology of a typology, you can attend trainings or read books on psychotypes. But experience comes only with real practice. If there is no experience, it is better to manage simply based on your own intuition. “I have such colleagues from recruitment agencies who take money for typing, but do it very badly, in the end they give out wrong assessments and misdirect candidates,” Liya Sergeeva cites the example . – This is a very dangerous weapon. If you do not know how to do it, it is better to go and study.

Leadership expert Radislav Gandapas says that forgiveness or resentment is a child’s model of reaction. As adults we have to come to the understanding that one does the best one can do. And if your colleague is constantly in conflict, does not accept criticism, it means that his personal development is at a low level. Be offended by it is not worth it. But if you want to be respected by colleagues and build relationships with you, you need to develop not only as a pro, but also as a person.

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Psychology of the team: the rules of relations with colleagues

Relationships in the team have a huge impact on the efficiency of the work process – every competent manager knows this. For many, the work has long become a second home. That is why knowledge of the psychology of relations in the team plays an important role.

Each employee is unique, and has his own, sometimes complicated, character, preferences and wishes. So it is not surprising that there are often conflicts and quarrels within the team. How to avoid them and create an atmosphere of mutual understanding?

The social psychology of the team

The team at work is a social environment. It consists of many different people. They have different views on life, upbringing, goals for the future and abilities. However, they have to spend some time together and address common issues. Interaction in this case is a direct way to the success of the company.

A person learns to find common ground with the team from early childhood. First comes kindergarten, then school, then university and finally work. And each time you have to adapt to new people. However, this is not always easy to do. How often in adulthood, people quit their jobs because they did not get accustomed to the team. And such cases are not uncommon.

The relationship between colleagues can be demonstrated with a clear example. Let’s say a new employee came into the company – a young and beautiful girl. What will feel at this moment those who have been working here for a long time? Most likely, it will be interest and, at the same time, tension. The employee can be compared to a foreign body, which is in the stage of examination by the body (in this case, the team). She is being examined, studied, and evaluated.

People will react to the new person in different ways. Some will like the girl for her professional and personal qualities. Others will be irritated and nervous. And in the first and second case, you will have to put up with a new employee, as teamwork depends on the coherent operation of the relationship in the team as a whole and the company.

Psychology at work and relations in the team

Section of psychology, which studies the relationship in the team, is considered the most difficult. And this is not surprising, because there is always misunderstanding between colleagues. There are several reasons for this state of affairs:

  • doubts about the professional qualities of the other person;
  • and the management’s foul play;
  • gossip and snitching.

Such problems occur in each team without exception. They can not only get rid of easily, but also wrap in their favor. This requires a minimal knowledge of the psychology of communication and relations with colleagues.

Types of relationships at work

Relationships with colleagues at work can be different. They are built on three main schemes, each of which has its own characteristics, advantages and disadvantages.

Psychology of equal or friendly relations

This is the closest communication. People praise each other, but will make a remark if necessary. This type of relationship is not suitable for the manager and someone on the staff. And there are reasons for this.

The friendship of the head and one of the members of the team distinguishes the latter from the rest. He occupies, if I may say so, a privileged position, which is certainly not to the liking of the rest. This is a direct path to conflict.

The psychology of the relationship of the older to the younger (from the position of the older)

This kind of relationship at work is divided into two subtypes:

  1. The mentor is the apprentice. The first helps the second with advice, but does not supervise him in any way, much less participate in his work. An apprentice is unlikely to listen to advice if it comes directly from a supervisor who is poorly versed in work processes. A mentor, on the other hand, gives you the opportunity to improve and move in the right direction.
  2. The supervisor is the subordinate. The supervisor evaluates the work of the employees, controls it, and, if necessary, punishes or encourages it. Here we are not talking about a close relationship, because it will destroy discipline in the team.

Psychology of the attitude of the junior to the senior (from the position of the junior)

Like the previous type of relationship, this one is divided into subspecies:

  1. Subordinate – supervisor. The main task of the former is to treat responsibilities responsibly and follow the instructions of the latter. He also needs to respect the supervisor, no matter what he is like.
  2. Apprentice – mentor. The relationship in the team according to this type assumes that the first listens to the advice of the second. And not only listens to them, but thinks them over and tries to apply them in practice. If the student argues and refuses to listen to the work mentor, he is not ready to learn. In this case, all conversation is useless.

Each of the above relationship development schemes provides an opportunity to build a healthy atmosphere and communication in the team.

Rules of good tone

Relationships at work with colleagues should be built according to a few simple rules. The first concerns friendliness. One should not be rude or boorish because of a bad mood. To be polite and grateful is not so difficult. These qualities dispose people.

However, you need to be careful here, because the close relationships in the team and informal communication can play a cruel joke. For example, a young employee will seem to the women of the team as a rival. The men because of her too loose behavior will think she is too windy and lose all respect.

The second rule is a logical extension of the first. You should not tell your work colleagues personal information about yourself. Good motives and trust easily turn into gossip, speculation and envy. It is enough to tell the proverbial minimum.

The third rule is consonant with the expression “don’t run ahead of the locomotive. Of course, it is good if the ability to do the job quickly and with high quality. However, the team consists of different people. Someone is working faster, someone, on the contrary, spends more time on the task. You shouldn’t try to correct or retrain your colleagues. They may take it as a challenge.

And finally, the fourth rule. It calls not to ignore the rituals and traditions of the team. Lunches and celebrations together will only improve the relationship.

Day One: Fatal Success

Relationships in the team at work largely depend on the first impression of an employee. He will have to pass a kind of test, the results of which will be based on its further communication with colleagues.

So, on the first day of work, you need to follow a number of simple recommendations:

  1. Dress as discreetly as possible, even if in life the style of dress can hardly be called modest.
  2. Do not forget the rules of etiquette. A minimum of a greeting and a word of farewell.
  3. Do not flirt with the representatives of the male sex. This will only spoil relations with them and with women.
  4. Do not argue trying to prove yourself right.
  5. Not to tell too much about yourself.
  6. Ask your colleagues for help if necessary.

Perform the above tips is not difficult. Just relax and try to enjoy your work.

We are so different and yet we are together

Building healthy relationships at work is not easy. This is because each person is different. There are several types of employees:

  1. Angry or grumpy. Unfriendly people who are always unhappy about something and easily lose their temper. Every word or reaction of others is an opportunity for them to vent their negativity. They have no desire to talk about good things.
  2. Envious people. Favorite occupation of such members of the team – to spread gossip, both at work and outside. They discuss everything from the new lipstick to professional activities. Such people are just bored. In communicating with them, you should avoid too frank stories about yourself and family.
  3. Rigid colleagues. Do not like changes. Even if the new is several times better than the old, they will not change anything. Relationships with such employees should be built on strict adherence to the established rules and instructions.
  4. Counselors. Constantly teaching others, right and left handing out advice. They are harmless. The worst thing their behavior leads to – a fight at work. Communicating with colleagues of this type, you need to take the initiative and ask for advice first.
  5. Pedants. React to the slightest inaccuracies and details. Moderate their ardor is quite easy. It is enough to shift some of the responsibilities that require a lot of attention and scrupulousness.
  6. Artists. They like to be in the spotlight. Scandals at work for them are a way to boost their energy. A couple of compliments and attention will turn them from enemies into allies.

These are just a few types of employees. In fact, there are many more. And if you can’t find a way to build a relationship with them, you also need to look at yourself. Perhaps the problem lies in your character and actions.

What can provoke colleagues to conflict

According to books on psychology, healthy relationships in the team are sometimes at risk. There are many reasons for this:

  • Non-sociability, reluctance to make contact;
  • complaints and denunciation of colleagues;
  • bad moods, splashing out on others;
  • overconfidence in one’s own rightness and straightforwardness;
  • fear of overwork;
  • comparison of one’s former job with one’s present job;
  • excessive curiosity about coworkers;
  • loud conversations on the phone, an elevated tone in dealing with others, a strong perfume scent.

Another reason for possible conflict lies in workaholism. Sometimes the desire to perform quality work from the outside is perceived as a desire to curry favor with the leadership or to stand out from the crowd.

Relationships in the male team: setting priorities.

In men’s team, as well as in women’s, conflicts often occur. Prevent them in several ways:

  1. Always look flawless. The best clothes for work is a strict business suit.
  2. Superfluous attention from colleagues or even flirtatiousness is surprising and puts you in a bind. There is no need to be rude in response. It is better to keep silent or move the conversation to another topic.
  3. It is worth remembering that every member of the team – the same employee, like everyone else. Therefore, it is not nice to demand special treatment.
  4. Do not react to provocations too emotionally. It is important to remain calm even in cases where brought to emotion on purpose. Stamina is required here.

The most important thing is to show respect to all colleagues at work without exception. We can say that this is the key to a good relationship.

How to build a relationship after a conflict: tips from a psychologist

Knowledge of the psychology of relations in the team at work is not a guarantee of the complete absence of conflicts. What to do if it has occurred?

  1. Calm down, relax. Focus your thoughts on the good qualities of the provocateur or offender. This will help, if not to forget the situation, at least to return a good relationship.
  2. Look at the disputed situation from the outside. Through this you can control yourself, not allowing your opponent to upset the equilibrium and thus achieve what you want.

To disarm the person who plans to continue the conflict can be only with calmness and equilibrium. These qualities, together with a sober outlook, allow you to destroy all the intentions of the offender.

So, what are the relationships in the team? Usually difficult, because each person is formed as a personality. They all have their own views on life and what is happening around them. In the team there are advisers, provocateurs, envious, pedants and even artists. If you find an individual approach to each of them, the relationship will be harmonious and healthy.

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