How To Build Greater Connection With Employees, Colleagues and Peers
Every person wants to feel they are worthy and as such, being loved is a core human need. When you feel loved by others, you’re have a warm interpersonal connection and strong emotional ties with them.
However, deep interpersonal connection at work is a complex dance – success depends on how much effort you put into it as well as how others interpret your behaviour.
Yet, encouraging close interpersonal connection at work is key to managing and leading people well. Close interpersonal connections builds strong workplace alliances – it opens the door for nurturing trust. Trust opens up greater possibilities to enroll and influence others when this is most needed.
Share Of Yourself And Invite Others To Do The Same
We build meaningful relationships by helping others understand who we are and by inviting them to do the same. Doing so builds rapport, personal warmth and an emotional space where others feel comfortable sharing feelings or even confiding.
Depending on how much you share, others will gain an understanding of how to go about connecting with and building long lasting relationships with you.
Managers and leaders gain tremendous relationship currency when they are able to connect with colleagues and others at this deep level. And, you may be unaware of how you want others to act towards you. Here are some questions to consider.
- How much do you want others to demonstrate warmth, care, friendliness, kindness, etc. towards you?
- How much and what do you want others to share with you.
Think about how you react when others want to build relationship with you and compare this to the answers to the earlier questions.
Giving Support and Asking for Help
Nurture connection and relationship by giving support and asking for help when you need it.
As a manager or leader, employees, colleagues and peers expect you to support and champion them. There are several ways in which you can do this. You can acknowledge their efforts, demonstrate appreciation through acts of kindness or gifts, take an interest in others’ lives or coach and mentor them.
Another and probably more effective way to determine how you can support others is to ask them. Ask your colleagues how the support you are offering meets their needs. Ask them, what their ideal support from you would look like for them?
Doing so will earn you more relationship currency and stronger interpersonal connection at work.
On the flip side, here are some questions for you to think about …
- What is the ideal support for you?
- How do you let others know what you need
Where Do You draw the line
When is interpersonal connection, support and encouragement too much and how do others know? Knowing the answer to this question is important as it will help you negotiate the eddies and narrow turns of interpersonal relationships at work.
All of us want to be affirmed. Yet, each of us have difference tolerance levels. For example, you may put a lot of effort into encouraging close personal connections with others. Yet, may have very little desire to get the same in return. The reverse may be true as well.
And, what we show to the world in some way is at some level a reflection of what we want.
Many managers and leaders have become reluctant to encourage stronger interpersonal connection at work. Some fear it would impact their ability to manage or lead with authority, others simply do not trust themselves to do this well enough.
Bottom Line: We all want to know that we are worthy as individuals. This need to be loved and how we show this to others manifest through openness, warmth, connection, support, affirmation, etc.
Knowing how well you do this is valuable management and leadership currency.