4 Tips on How to Demonstrate Respect to Co-Workers
Author Name: TrainingABC
Posted: 05-30-2018 03:28 AM
Synopsis: Respect is quite possibly the most important part of communication in the workplace. Without it, there will be conflict, low morale, losses in productivity, stress, depression, work absences and illness. This article lists several tips about how to show respect in the workplace
In a professional environment, conflicts are inevitable. Besides disagreements over our actual work, we may not like all of our colleagues.
In fact, some of our colleagues may be people that we would never speak with outside our office.
That said, regardless of our feelings, we can’t burn bridges. We need to effectively collaborate with and respect our co-workers—even those that we may strongly dislike. By doing this, we ensure that we are doing our best work and are making our offices as welcoming as possible.
But how do we actually this? Here are some tips on how to best demonstrate respect for your co-workers.
Be Patient. We live in a 24/7 world and deadlines come at a fast and furious pace. You and your colleagues are always relying on each other. That said, we can’t always expect our work days to go according to our plans. Complications happen. Your colleague may be working on several different projects, all with imminent deadlines. This isn’t acknowledging out-of-office issues which may be impairing their performance, such as an ongoing issue within their family.
While you obviously need to check-in with your colleagues on certain projects, it’s equally important to give them some space. Nobody likes a micromanager or somebody that constantly interrupts you as you are trying to complete a task. Not only is it distracting, but it causes you to do subpar work as you are constantly diverting your attention throughout the day.
Respect Workplace Diversity. Diversity is a great thing: studies have shown that workplace diversity not only makes teams smarter, but makes companies more profitable. All of us come to our offices with different perspectives and ways of looking at the world. However, at times, it can sometimes be difficult to accept our colleagues’ ideas and perspectives because they clash with our own.
It may be difficult to temporarily put our perspectives aside and listen to new opinions. That said, it’s a necessary practice. It is a form of emotional intelligence that shows that you respect your colleagues as people and their experiences that they bring to the table.
Granted, you don't have to adopt every perspective and idea that your colleagues share. But by respecting the diversity of our colleagues and their ideas, we not only create a better workplace, but we create better outcomes for customers and clients. And who knows—you may learn some new things along the way.
Be Generous With Praise. We are all hired to do certain jobs and are expected to perform those jobs to the best of our abilities. This is a given. However, there’s something to be said for giving appreciative feedback to colleagues who perform well in a given circumstance.
Dale Carnegie, the author of such classics like How to Win Friends and Influence People, perhaps said it best:
“Be hearty in your approbation and lavish in your praise.”
By doing this (and expecting nothing in return), you place a positive spotlight on your colleague, which emphasizes that they are important and that you value their work. Your colleague will remember your praise and will use it as motivation to keep performing at a high level.
Be wary, however, of giving genuine praise rather than fabricated praise. Fabricated or grimacing praise is easily detectable and will do more harm than simply not speaking up at all. But by giving genuine, honest praise, you build goodwill in the office and demonstrate that you truly care for and respect your co-workers.
We Can’t Do It Alone
Offices can be complicated, tricky places. They bring together a wide range of people who must collaborate under stressful conditions. Egos can be strong and ambition can harm relationships.
Putting all of this aside, we must place an emphasis on respect in the workplace. We cannot do our jobs alone—we must rely on others to obtain success not only for our companies, but for our own careers. By respecting our colleagues, we also create a more productive and fun environment. When all is said and done, who doesn’t want that?