Whether you like it or not, you can select your friends but not your coworkers. Almost all jobs out there will require you to work with people with diverse personalities and different problem-solving approaches. Sure, your work life would be awesome if your colleagues were selfless, kind, and goal-oriented people who contribute to a great working environment.
In reality, however, there will always be co-workers who you don’t get along with. And since you’ll be spending more than eight hours a day with your workmates, cultivating a decent relationship with them is essential. Follow these tips on how to get along with people you work with.
Respect is paramount
Demonstrating respect for your colleagues is important whether they are your friends or not. To show absolute respect, do not get involved in things that appear offensive to your workmates. Being respectful of your colleague’s opinions is also the key to success in your work environment. Be careful of conversations about religion, politics, and other current events in the workplace. These are bound to happen, but they could offend certain coworkers. When such conversations ensue, try to show complete respect. Respect your colleagues’ opinions even if you are against them. Offending your workmates can lead to an extremely tense situation in the office.
Recognize different personalities
We all have different personalities, which is natural and unavoidable. Some of your coworkers will likely have personality traits that get on your nerves. On the same note, not everyone will like your personality, so at some point you will also get on someone else’s nerves. It is important to be aware of this fact. If by any chance you do something that aggravates your colleagues, try to adjust your behavior as soon as you can. Your workmates will appreciate it, and they will most likely reciprocate.
Communicate and spell out your grievances
At times, friction will arise in your office. That is inevitable, at least once in a while. When such tense moments occur, ensure that you are in a calm and clear headspace before uttering a word. Otherwise, you may end up escalating the situation into a real feud. When your supervisor or colleague makes a demand that you think is not reasonable, make sure you spell out your complaints. Take a deep breath, and then communicate the issue clearly so your point can be understood.
Practice healthy office etiquette
Every job demands good manners. You should practice good office etiquette and always be polite each time you are around your workmates. Remember, having good manners doesn’t cost you a penny. Before you make any phone call – whether personal or job-related phone call – make sure that you aren’t going to distract anyone who is working. Keep your voice as low as possible and keep your personal conversations private. Also, use acceptable etiquette when emailing your coworkers. Make use of such words as “please” and “thank you” when requesting something. Be careful not to appear demanding.
Steer clear of malicious gossip
Finally, always stay away from unnecessary gossip in your workplace. Participating in a juicy chit-chat is, without a doubt, tempting. But gossip can hurt people, make others uncomfortable, and spiral out of control. Therefore, strive to resist the urge to gossip about anything – especially about your fellow colleagues.