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Ways to Develop Your Work Relationships

Baskar Sundaram

We all have our favourite people and our not-so-favourite people in our lives. Some people you enjoy spending time with while certain others seem to drain your time and energy and leave you exhausted. So how can you get along and build chemistry and rapport with everyone you see, especially at work? You can start by identifying each person’s personality and characteristics and work your way with that. Given below are some ways by which you can work along with different people by embracing differences and fostering understanding:

Kim Christfort and Suzanne Vickberg in their book Business Chemistry identify four personality types in the workplace. They are:

Pioneers

Usually, an endlessly enthusiastic and creative visionary who has huge dreams about the future of the company. Pioneers find it difficult to pay attention to details and follow a structured plan. But they have never ending ideas but the implementation is often left to others

Always listen to a Pioneer and never say the word ‘no’. Pioneers are extroverts and optimistic. If they suggest impossible ideas ask them to expamd on the idea and often when talking they would realise the futility of the idea. 

If you are a Pioneer then focus on achieving your ideas. Make a plan and break it down to achievable parts and focus on achieving each part. Do not leave your ideas and plans to be implemented by others as it might never happen. Take action and work towards achieving them.

Guardians 

They are ones who stick to the rules and do not take any risks. They are often thought of a hindrance to progress, but they are highly reliable. They believe in the notion of rules and structure and execute all plans by following rules and mitigating risks.

Guardians trive on details, clarity and planning. So when you are working with this work personality, make sure you inform them ahead on time, explain details and what is expected of them. Provide them with the structure they need to carry out tasks.

If you a Guardian, you cannot avoid stress-inducing situations like spontaneous meetings. Change your mindset and attempt to think differently. A racing heart should be thought of as excitement and so on. 

Drivers 

Drivers are goal-oriented, focused indviduals who only care about completing tasks. They are often difficult to work with, bossy and lack social skills or empathy. Though they get the job done and complete tasks in a proper manner, they are the least favourite people to work with.

Drivers are goal-oriented so give them the targets they should achieve. They crave competition so tell them they will be measured against their past performance or external competition. Explain things to them which you might take for granted.

If you are Driver, learn to be kind. When composing an email or just seeing a colleague start by saying “how was your day?” and so on. 

Integrators

They often value relationships and people the most. They are often thought of as a peacemaker because they seek collaboration and consensus. As a leader people might find them unappealing because they take time making decisions and often wait around for agreement from all parties.

Integrators crave to work in a close-knit team and working alone in a nightmare for them. So make them a part of a team. Be friendly to them and encourage the ways by which they support others. Integrators are motivated by socialising with others.

If you are an Integrator, then try to help yourself often. You might be busy all day helping others but your boss might not see it that way. When it comes to performance evaluation, explain how you helping others helped the company.

Always remember that empathy and understanding are the key values needed to build any work relationship.

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