It’s important to demonstrate respect to others. It’s a critical part of building strong relationships with them. If you don’t demonstrate respect for the people you work with, they won’t respect you. This will lead to many different problems that have the potential to lower morale and productivity. A lack of respectful treatment can increase turnover and lead to conflict at work.
How does respect look at work? There are many ways you can show others your regard. One of the most important things you can do is to be polite and kind. Say please and thank you. It’s surprising how often people forget these small courtesies at work. Learn other people’s names and how to pronounce them properly. If you don’t bother to learn people’s names, they’ll notice immediately and take it personally. When you’re polite, you don’t interrupt others or do anything to embarrass them. Sometimes, it’s tempting to criticize others publicly when you’re irritated, but control this impulse. People resent it and they’re likely to do the same thing to you in the future.
Next, you can show respect by the way that you work. First of all, share the credit for projects you work on with others. You didn’t accomplish it all by yourself. Let managers know how others made a contribution to the work. It’s also critical that you’re reliable when it comes to work. Team members depend on you to fulfill your commitments. If you don’t, you not only make their lives more difficult, you show that you have little respect for them.
As difficult as it is to be honest in uncomfortable situations, it’s important when it comes to building trustful relationships. People remember lies. They also notice when you don’t share pertinent information. A lack of honesty will quickly erode mutually respectful relationships. Honesty is important when it comes to conflict. If you don’t speak openly with others, you can’t resolve conflicts. They’ll fester and lead to even bigger disagreements in the future.
You need to show that you respect people’s boundaries. Casual conversations are an important part of building relationships, but there is a time and a place for everything. Don’t interrupt people while they’re at work. Respect their time and allow them to concentrate.
There are some other strategies you can use to build trust at work.
- Be conscious of your body language and voice. The people you’re speaking with will notice how you speak to them. It’s a good idea to ask for feedback from trusted colleagues on how you interact with others. They can tell you if you seem harsh, abrasive, disrespectful or unkind.
- Avoid making jokes about or poking fun at colleagues even when they’re not around. It’s easy to fall into the habit of doing this when other employees doing the same, but word spreads fast people often repeat jokes to others. It can seriously harm your workplace relationships if you don’t demonstrate respect to coworkers whether they are present or not.
- Be a good team player. Participate in meetings. Share ideas and help others brainstorm. Do your best to support others whether it be through collaboration, sharing workloads or helping them find resources.
- Resist the temptation to criticize and complain, even when things are difficult. Instead, focus more on demonstrating a positive attitude at all times. When you need to give someone feedback, do it in the most constructive way possible. Don’t criticize the person’s personality or demean them. Stick to the task at hand and give feedback based on performance and offer resources for improvement.
- Use common courtesies as often as possible. Give compliments, say thank you, don’t interrupt others while they’re speaking and keep your promises. If you offer to follow up on an item or return a call or email, do it.
Gestures like these can help build respect between you and your coworkers, managers and employees. In order to respect you, people need to know that they can depend on you to keep your word. They also need confidence that you won’t undermine them behind their backs. The efforts you make to treat others respectfully will pay off. First of all, others are much more likely to respect you. They will trust you enough to do their best when they work with you.