Relationships are essential, both in and out of work.

Now more than ever the world is feeling the need for and the power of relationships.

Understanding the relationships in your world of work is an important step towards being an effective worker. Each relationship that you have, has key aspects and benefits to be aware of. Being able to navigate the many types of workplace relationships that exist, will help to facilitate your professional goals.

Why focus strategically on your relationships?

It’s good to have people in your corner for many reasons, but here are some specific ones: 

  • To Learn about work and the path that people have taken to get to where they are, personally and professionally. This can help you gather more data and information to build your plans.
  • To Connect to your team and place of work. This can help you feel more aligned with your work’s mission and assist when you’re working on collaborative projects or trying to get buy-in for new ideas. 
  • To Advance and identify new opportunities or gain new skills. This is an avenue to source opportunities or find promotions within your career. 
  • To Give Back to your organization and your coworkers. We connect to help each other reach our goals. 

Identifying Types of Relationships –

Take inventory of the people that are in your workplace, academic spaces, and peer environment. After you’ve assessed your social network, think about how you can leverage these relationships to further your goals. 

Start by asking youself:

  • What is my personal brand and how does it connect with others?
  • Who do I click with or get along with easily?
  • Who do I need to connect with in order to make your work and their work easier?

Once you’ve identified the types of relationships in your professional network, you can create a plan to develop them. Apply your social skills to develop your relationships in the workplace. This is a great article that breaks down the skills that you can focus on to build and strengthen your relationships. 

strengthening your professional relationships is just getting to know people.

Think about connecting with people at the human level without a motive, as Nita Baum highlights at a previous CCE dinner event. 

If the approach is led with humanity,  then you can shift or build onto the relationship when you have a networking need in the future. 

Remember, Relationship Building Happens Everywhere.

Building your network doesn’t have to be an extra step or a chore; it is something that is happening all the time. 

By being mindful of your process when you build relationships, you can ensure that you’re taking thoughtful, intentional steps to develop your professional network.