Intentional Relationship Building in the Workplace

Posted by Trakstar • June 20, 2023 • 6 min read

As the world becomes increasingly globalized, international relationships in the workplace are becoming more critical than ever, not only for people as employees but as humans. After all, people spend more time with their colleagues than with friends!

Building strong connections with colleagues enhances collaboration and innovation and fosters a deeper understanding and appreciation within the workplace. Building workplace relationships is difficult, especially within a remote or hybrid workplace.

However, healthy and strong relationships are the backbone of a great organization.

Whether you’re working with colleagues across oceans, across cubicles, or simply looking to strengthen an already healthy relationship between coworkers, read on for guidance on building meaningful relationships that can benefit you and your company.

The Benefits of Healthy Workplace Relationships

Positive workplace relationships can be highly beneficial for both individuals and the company. One of the primary advantages is gaining exposure to diverse perspectives, ideas, and approaches from colleagues with different cultural backgrounds. Understanding each other and using emotional intelligence to communicate can make your day-to-day work much more manageable. It can also lead to increased employee engagement, job satisfaction, trust, and retention rates.

Good work relationships also allow individuals to expand their professional networks beyond their immediate teams or departments, building a truly inclusive workplace where everyone feels like their coworkers respect and trust them. This can lead to new opportunities for collaboration, skill-building, and career advancement within your company! Retention and communication are at the top of the list for what more HR professionals worry about within their organizations today, and having those professional relationships really helps.

Moreover, building strong relationships promote better communication and understanding across teams that may have previously struggled due to language barriers or cultural differences, particularly in larger organizations where building workplace relationships tends to suffer. It can also foster greater empathy towards others’ experiences outside of one’s culture, making the world a better place.

Having diverse colleagues helps companies remain competitive in today’s global business environment by providing unique insights into specific markets or regions. Investing in international relationship-building is crucial for creating a thriving and inclusive workplace culture that benefits everyone involved. A better relationship between different departments or sectors will only fix some of your problems, but a good working relationship can move mountains.

Relationship Building in the Workplace

Building relationships in the workplace requires effort, patience, and an open mind for both HR leaders and employees. A good relationship may be enough in some workplaces, but others may require more strength. First, you have to define what a healthy workplace relationship looks like for your organization. Only then can you focus on building relationship plans. 

Here are some tips to help you develop strong connections with your colleagues:

  1. Educate yourself on your coworkers. If you have a new employee signed on, it’s time to form a new work relationship! Try to learn about who they are as a human.
  2. Be respectful: Respect differences by avoiding stereotypes or making assumptions based on someone’s background. Instead, ask questions and listen actively. Even if you don’t understand, try to build a positive relationship with everyone.
  3. Communicate clearly: Language barriers, emotional intelligence, and professionalism can be significant obstacles when building relationships with colleagues. Speak slowly and clearly when communicating with non-native speakers of your language. Think about what you are saying when you say it to help build a professional relationship.
  4. Celebrate diversity: Organize events that celebrate different cultures in the workplace, such as potlucks or cultural fairs. This will not only help to build a professional and personal relationship between coworkers, but it will also encourage people to get outside of their comfort zones.
  5. Build rapport outside of work: Schedule team-building activities outside of work hours, but outside of work. You shouldn’t expect a worker to do something outside of work hours, but they may be interested in attending a team-building activity.

By implementing these practices into your daily routine at work, you will foster stronger relationships with colleagues from all backgrounds that will enrich both your professional and personal lives! Remember that a solid relationship is built on trust, effective communication, and mutual respect.

Tips for Maintaining Healthy Relationships in the Workplace

Maintaining a good work relationship between employees is crucial for achieving success and growth in today’s competitive world. However, it can be challenging to nurture these relationships when you are not interacting daily or when there is much work to do. 

Here are some tips to help Human Resources leaders nurture and maintain strong relationships:

  • Communication is key. Talk to your coworkers in the elevator, the break room, or when walking down the hall. Keep in touch regularly via email, video calls, or instant messaging apps. Make sure to listen carefully and show interest in what people have to say during jobs. A healthy work relationship can happen anywhere, including in a remote or hybrid environment.
  • Demonstrate flexibility by being open-minded about different viewpoints and be willing to adapt your approach accordingly. Leaders should always hear out everyone who has a perspective, even if the idea isn’t possible.
  • Make an effort to understand the language spoken by your international colleagues or partners, as it will enhance communication and build trust. Pick up a few words and pleasantries to help them feel better about fumbling words if English is their second language.
  • Prioritize face-to-face meetings whenever possible since they provide invaluable opportunities for building rapport that cannot be replaced over digital channels. Team building, on-site, and just seeing someone in real life help people grow as colleagues.

Maintaining strong workplace relationships requires consistent effort, but the benefits can lead to tremendous success both professionally and personally. A positive workplace relationship can help reengage an employee, prevent someone from burnout, and even get the best out of them. The pressure is on human resource leaders, but this should be an initiative for all employees.

relationship building in the workplace

Need Help Building Positive Workplace Relationships?

Building relationships in the workplace is crucial for success. It enhances creativity and innovation and promotes mutual understanding and respect among colleagues with different perspectives, communication skills, and outlooks on your work.

To build strong relationships, it’s essential to cultivate an open mind, be curious about other employees, and show genuine interest in your colleagues’ backgrounds, skills, and weaknesses.

Investing time and effort into cultivating international relationships can lead to better collaboration, increased productivity, and, ultimately more significant success for everyone involved.

It can all start by ensuring people are aligned in their goals, efforts, and strategies. Using a talent management system ensures employees are working together instead of working at the same time. Click here to schedule a demo.

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