Achieving More Together

1. Understanding and Empathy

Communication is a big part of this first step. As communications professionals, you’re likely aware that real communication begins the moment someone understands you, which means they’re listening. Especially at the outset, it’s key to put your own goals aside in order to really hear what others are saying.

Poor communication in the workplace can lead to a poor culture, significantly hindering workplace happiness. The same goes for your relationships at work. You want to create good feelings on both sides upon which you can construct a fruitful relationship.

Idea: Organize a breakout session in which your people can get to know one another, and use it to find a topic you can tackle together.

2. Respect The fastest way to gain respect from other departments is to treat them well and take steps towards aligning your mutual goals. Really listen to what HR has to say. Especially in these days of smartphones and instant messaging, time spent face-to-face holds enormous value. Sit down in person with somebody and leave your phone behind. This simple step is a great way of showing that you’re truly interested, enhancing respect while simultaneously serving to increase the attention given to the meeting.

Through active listening, we show that we’re genuinely interested in what the other person thinks, feels, or wants. But make sure you truly understand the message before responding in kind.

3. Trust and Honesty

In order to gain trust it’s essential to be open with your views and emotions. Give honest feedback and keep your promises, even when facing challenges. Feedback is especially important here because it will be the basis for future growth. Don’t tell someone you liked something if you really don’t; and remember, while some honest feedback might sting, in the long term it will create a foundation of trust.

In addition, ask for the things you need. As in any relationship, it would be great if we could read minds, but we can’t—not even the Mentalist. Instead, ask when you need something. And say something when processes annoy you.

4. Positive Intent and Appreciation

Focus on win-win outcomes and show appreciation for work well done. Give compliments and thanks regularly. Acknowledge achievements and show gratitude whenever gratitude is due. It’s the Golden Rule, right? Treat all others as you’d wish to be treated by them.

This next point is especially important if you want this relationship to be lasting: people will do you a favor once, but if you fail to show appreciation, they might not do it again. Put some effort into actively thanking the other person and doing your best to return the favor.

Staff base says Thank You Nick Wright, a communications, engagement, and change consultant, puts a practical spin on the kind of advice we’re offering here: “When we have a joint interest and when we understand and respect our individual strengths, our partnerships work extremely well. We achieve the best outcomes for business when we work hand in hand together from the outside

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