Improving Your Relationship with Your Team
By Megan Morrow
Published July 30, 2019
As Labor Day approaches, you may be looking forward to a long weekend, family time or a brief getaway. You might even start dreaming about the weekend days in advance. While a long weekend is often welcome, it is still important to focus on what is happening at the office, particularly the relationship you have with your team – managers and direct reports alike.
If your team relationships could be enhanced, consider the following tips for building stronger connections:
- Ask questions and listen to the answers. We are all busy, so sometimes it is easy to rush, to talk without waiting for a response and to check messages while halfway paying attention to someone else on your team. Efficiency should not talk the place of respect and camaraderie. When you ask questions and show genuine interests, you can build stronger connections, even friendships, and learn more about the people you work with and their strengths. If you struggle with this, schedule 20 minutes on your calendar each day to reach out to someone new, take a coffee break with a colleague or spend some extra time at the water cooler.
- Encourage positive relationships among team members. Managers who sow discord or create constant competition can burn team members out. Those who inspire positive team dynamics, however, can create a win-win in the workforce. Employees who have a “best friend” at the office are far more likely to be engaged in their work, according to Gallup. Further, when teams get along it is simply more fun to spend time and work together.
- Create a team mission statement. This can be short and sweet, but an effective reminder of how your group contributes to your company’s overall mission. Encourage participation and buy-in from everyone when crafting this. You can also regularly develop and update team goals and reminders about roles and expectations so everyone is on the same page working to support the big picture.
- Take charge of difficult relationships. You simply cannot be close friends with every colleague, manager or direct report. However, many people are guilty of ignoring (or gossiping about) challenging relationships in hopes that it will get better or that person will move on; rather, take more time to get to know this person and understand his or her perspective. Do not be afraid to involve Human Resources if necessary.
- Show appreciation. Say thank you and share recognition when it is due. Applaud team members in front of others. A full 94 percent of employees surveyed noted that they appreciated being recognized at the office.
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The material presented here is for information purposes only and is not to be considered an offer to buy or sell any security. This report was prepared from sources believed to be reliable but it is not guaranteed as to accuracy and it is not a complete summary of statement of all available data. Information and opinions are current up to the date of publication and are subject to change without notice. The purchase and sale of securities should be conducted on an individual basis considering the risk tolerance and investment objective of each investor and with the advice and counsel of a professional advisor. The opinions expressed by Ms. Morrow are strictly her own and do not necessarily reflect those of Herbert J. Sims & Co., Inc. or their affiliates. This is not a solicitation to buy or an offer to sell any particular investment. All investment involves risk and may result in a loss of principal. Investors should carefully consider their own circumstances before making any investment decision.