Summer Skill Series: Relationship Building
What is Relationship Building?
From the commercialism of romantic tropes to the necessity of cohesiveness between work colleagues, our relationships and the quality thereof have often been a nuanced subject. But at its core, building relationships is how we enhance experiences in our personal and professional lives. It’s how we develop meaningful and productive bonds with each other.
Why is it Important?
In today’s world of hybrid offices and digital nomads, it can be difficult to remember how to navigate the intricacies of human interaction. We mustn’t forget that we are social creatures. We not only thrive on connection but are also buoyed by it in our darkest moments. Quality relationships pave the way to the threshold of opportunity.
How to Practice Relationship Building:
- Be authentic. Don’t hide from others. Genuine openness and vulnerability encourage the same from those around us, inviting the exploration of more meaningful interactions instead of fake smiles and inconsequential small talk, as discussed in this podcast with leadership consultant Simon Sinek.
- Be engaging. Make eye contact with others. Ask about their day and try to get to know them. If meeting with remote colleagues, occasionally invite everyone to turn on cameras so that they become more than a static image. Focus on the real people beneath the texts and images on our screens.
- Be memorable. Spark conversations with people we want to know better. As author Susan Cain poses in this video from Insider Business, sometimes connecting with others requires a shift in our mindset. We can become more than a transaction to others by choosing to engage with those we see in seemingly mundane activities, such as the clerk at the grocery store or the barista at the corner coffee shop.
By building better connections to one another, we add more meaning to not only ourselves, but to others as well.
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