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Building Workplace Relationships

Updated: Aug 22, 2022

Doesn’t that sound impossible during this unprecedented period?

What Can You Do To Build Workplace Relationships?

In his book, ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’, Stephen Covey introduces the concept of the circle of concern versus the circle of influence. The circle of concern are the things that we fret over, perseverate about, and yet cannot actually control. Whereas the circle of influence are the things that we can actually control. When we are REactive, our focus tends to be on the outer circle, resulting in the middle circle shrinking. But when we are PROactive, we tend to focus on what we can influence, resulting in the middle circle expanding.

“The Whole is Greater Than the Sum of its Parts”

In 2021, organisations need to be focused on expanding their middle circle by ‘controlling the controllables’. One worthwhile factor that leaders can focus on during this unique time, is strengthening the interpersonal relaionships amongst employees and teams. With the average person spending more time working than any other activity, it is important that they feel supported by their co-workers and leaders.

We Are All Different

Understanding that we are all different is vital in strengthening the interpersonal relationships. Whilst we may not align with some individual’s values or ‘click’ with their characteristics, being able to appreciate others is what leads to effective, productive and cohesive teams.

Learning about how other’s personalities, priorities and behavioural styles differ from ours, allows us to adapt to the styles of others, improving workplace collaboration. For example, imagine that you are someone that enjoys maintaining harmony within the work environment. Due to your more accepting personality, you may perceive someone who is blunt to be intimidating or rude. However, understanding that their bluntness is motivated by the fact that they prioritise results will help you to better understand that ‘intimidation’ is not their intention.

A Tool to Help Build Workplace Relationships

The DiSC tool is one way in which organisations can strengthen relationships amongst employees and team members. All DiSC users receive personalised insights that deepen their understanding of self and others, making workplace interactions more enjoyable and effective.

For example, employees high on “I” (influence) typically enjoy socializing, so asking “I” co-workers about their weekend before a meeting could help strengthen that relationship. However, employees high on “C” (compliance) respond best to being detail-oriented and discussing relevant issues, while also tending to be more private, so being well-prepared for a meeting would be a better approach in that case.

To Conclude

The workplace is riddled with uncertainty. By focusing on what we can control, we are placing ourselves in better stead for organisational success. Creating strong interpersonal relationships within a workplace will boost collaboration and productivity, but most importantly, it is a factor that we can control.

DiSC provides insight into both ourselves and our co-workers, allowing us to understand questions such as…

· What should I expect when working on a project with my co-worker?

· How do I get buy-in with a co-worker?

· What causes my co-worker to become stressed at work?

· When is it appropriate to engage in discussion with my co-worker?

· What are the similarities between my co-worker and I?

· Can my co-worker handle the pressure?

To learn more about the DiSC tool and how it can assist in managaing workplace relationships visit Building an Effective team - Workshop page

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