Working Relationships

With Valentine’s Day on the horizon, and with everyone concentrating on their loved ones, I thought it would be topical to assess relationships in the corporate world!

If you want to enjoy your job more, be more productive and more engaged, you need to manage your working relationships effectively.

Humans are naturally social and crave relationships and interactions. You may spend more hours with your colleagues than your loved ones so it is crucial you have good relationships! Furthermore you need to retain strong relationships with anyone you interact with on a business level; clients, service providers, networkers etc. to ensure you are constantly retaining and building a positive brand image.

Trust is critical for a positive working relationship; you need to be able to trust your team to deliver on time, your managers to guide you, your colleagues to support you and your providers to supply their services promptly and effectively. If all this is done successfully, you have the backbone for clients to trust you.

You need to have mutual respect for a relationship to be successful and positive. Share opinions with any colleague or business partner in a courteous manner, give constructive feedback and be understanding and sympathetic. You need to respect your colleagues in order to work well together, to achieve ongoing development, and for continued success. You need to respect your Managers in order to learn and be guided, and Managers need to respect and be open minded to all levels of the business – the newest recruit may have some great ideas that could really develop the business.

Strong and open communication is essential to build effective relationships, you need to be honest and take responsibility for mistakes; this will save time and nip any issues in the bud early. It is important to share knowledge, sources and materials with colleagues so everyone in the business is equally equipped and a consistently strong standard of service can be delivered. Avoid office gossip and keep confidential information guarded, make a conscious effort to congratulate, praise and offer help and advice – by doing this not only will you make your relationships stronger but, also more professional.

If you have a bad working relationship with a client or a customer, it is highly unlikely they will use your services again. A famous quote that I will never forget from Maya Angelou is; “people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”. This is important for working relationships, if you keep contact with a client after a sale, show an interest and continue to make them feel important, you will be at the forefront of their mind when they have a need. In addition to repeat business from existing clients, if you have a good relationship they will be more inclined to recommend you – driving more new sales to your business. On top of this, if something goes wrong with the product or service you have provided, it will be much easier to resolve without damaging your relationship.

If you have strong working relationships, not only will it have a positive effect on your emotion towards your job, but you will save time that could be wasted overcoming problems arisen from negative relationships and focus on new opportunities and initiatives. Your current success will only get stronger and continue to develop, ultimately driving the growth of the business!

Katrina Whitehead, Marketing and Operations Executive, Foundation Recruitment

Foundation Recruitment staff portraits

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