David has over 15 years of supervisory experience and has extensive knowledge of how to handle personnel issues across many areas.
How to Get Along With Your Co-Workers
Almost all jobs out there require you to work with other people. Since you may spend more time in the workplace than with your own family, you need to learn how to work well with other people.
Learning how to work well with others is the key to success. Without having that ability, you could find the task you are working on taking longer to complete, or worse yet, the task failing completely.
20 Tips for Getting Along With Your Coworkers, Employees or Boss
- Greet them when you first see them.
- Make the new people feel welcome.
- Do your job.
- Be respectful of your co-workers' opinions.
- Be cognizant of different personalities.
- Know that everyone has a bad day.
- Do favors for your co-workers.
- Learn to apologize for your actions.
- You won't like everyone.
- Have a potluck.
- Don't be a brown-noser.
- Accept their decisions.
- Set a good example in the office.
- Do your job.
- Realize that supervisors are people too.
- Be sociable with your staff.
- Be approachable when your staff has issues.
- Don't micromanage your staff.
- Share information with your staff.
- Show that you are a person as well.
How to Work Well With Your Co-Workers
Obviously, the people you will be working with the most will be your co-workers. Learning how to work well with them will make the job much more enjoyable and help pass the time quickly. Plus, it will help complete each task you and your co-workers are working on that much faster. Keep the following tips in mind:
- Greet them when you first see them. The greeting at the beginning of the day means a lot. If you ignore someone when you first see them, they will instantly think something is wrong, and you are upset at them. A simple "good morning" can go a long way to making the rest of the day go by without a problem.
- Make the new people feel welcome. The new person always has it hard. Welcome the new employee with open arms. It can be uncomfortable for you to have to interact with someone new—but think of what it's like for them. They have to learn how to work well with a large group of people they have not met before.
- Do your job. One of the best ways to work well with your co-workers is to do your job. Nothing will annoy a co-worker more than someone failing to do their job. If you don't do your work, it will just give them more to do. No one wants more work to do, so ensure you do your fair share.
- Be respectful of your co-workers' opinions. You will inevitably have conversations with your co-workers about current events, politics, religion, and everything else in between. Even if your organization forbids you to, it ends up happening. Keeping that in mind, you have to be respectful of their opinions. If you offend them, it would make for a very tense situation in the office.
- Be cognizant of different personalities. Some of your co-workers will have quirks that will get on your nerves. In turn, you will have quirks that will get on their nerves. Just be aware of that. If you know you do something which bugs others, try to tune it back. Your co-workers will appreciate it, and they may do the same in return.
- Know that everyone has a bad day. Sometimes people have a bad day. There could be problems at home, they could be sick, etc. So if you see someone usually outgoing is keeping to themselves, give them some space. Don't press them to talk about what's going on. Let them get through the day, and if they want to talk, they will come to you.
- Do favors for your co-workers. Let's say one of your co-workers wants a day off but can't get it unless someone works for them. You are off that day. Do them a favor and work for them. Not only will that help your relationship with your co-worker, but it will also allow you to ask them for a favor in the future. You will constantly trade favors with your co-workers. You shouldn't take everything without giving something in return.
- Learn to apologize for your actions. Co-workers fight; it's only human nature. What they don't tend to do is apologize for their actions. Even if you are in the right, an apology will help smooth things over in the office that much faster. Submitting an apology, even when right, is better than weeks or months of turmoil between co-workers.
- You won't like everyone. There is no way you can end up liking everyone in your office. You aren't expected to. You don't have to be friends, just co-workers. Don't act out at someone just because you don't like them. Talk to them regarding the job and go no further. If you act like you don't like them, it will create tension in the office.
- Have a potluck. Nothing gets people getting along with one another than having a potluck. Talking, food, and relaxation get people talking and laughing. Every single pot-luck day I have had has been a good day. Everyone learns to get past the problems in the office and learn to work with one another when a potluck happens.
Keep in mind that each situation is different. You may be in unique situations that require a different approach. But these tips will help you get along with your co-workers, whether it be the first time you are meeting them or if you have worked with them for years.
How to Work Well With Your Boss
Working with your supervisor is different than a co-worker. While the tips above still apply, there are some additional ones to consider:
- Don't be a brown-noser. You would think sucking up to your boss is a good way to work well with them. It isn't. In fact, it's a good way to get on their bad side. Your boss won't be able to rely on you for an honest opinion if you always agree with what they are saying. Just be yourself.
- Accept their decisions. If your boss advises you to do something, then do it. Don't ignore it, disobey it, or do something completely different. Do what you are instructed to do. If you fail to do as you are instructed, that definitely makes you look bad to your supervisor, and they'll rely less on your for support.
- Set a good example in the office. If your supervisor sees that you are setting a good example in the office with your other co-workers, your supervisor will appreciate you for it. They will give you special projects, look favorably upon you, and will be happy to have you as their employee.
- Do your job. This tip was mentioned above, but it's mentioned here as well for a reason. It's doubly important to do your job so you can work well with your supervisor. If you fail to do your job or do it correctly, things will be tense between you and your supervisor. You will always feel like you are about to be talked to for making a mistake, and they will feel like they can't rely on you to do your job.
- Realize that supervisors are people too. In some ways, supervisors have it harder than those working below them. They have a lot more to deal with, which means a lot more stress. If they are having a bad day, then be understanding if they are barking out orders all day. They are only human.
You should always try to stay on your supervisor's good side. This makes the job that much easier and allows you to work well with them. If you get on their bad side, it can make the job a miserable place to be.
Positive culture comes from being mindful, and respecting your coworkers, and being empathetic.
— Biz Stone
How to Work Well With Your Employees as the Boss
A supervisor will have a rough time if they don't work well with their employees. So a boss needs to learn how to get along with their employees. Without your employees, the work in the office will never be completed. Keep the following tips in mind when working with your staff:
- Be sociable with your staff. If you just sit in your office and never come out to see your staff except to bark orders out or yell at them, then your staff will be resistant to what you have to say. Instead, go out and visit with your staff. Ask them how their day is going, what's new in their life, etc. Knowing your staff will help you work better with them.
- Be approachable when your staff has issues. If your staff have problems at home and need some time off, or if they just have a simple work-related question, make yourself available to your staff. If you close the door on them, they will feel like they can't come to you. That won't help your office run smoothly at all.
- Don't micromanage your staff. Your staff will constantly look over their shoulder if they feel like you are always watching them. That will make them paranoid about anything going on in the office. If you talk to them, they will think something is up. Paranoia undermines the operations of the office.
- Share information with your staff. When something new is going on in your department, share it with your staff. Holding information will make your staff not trust you and cause things to be done incorrectly. You can't work with your staff if they don't trust you.
- Show that you are a person as well. Show you make errors and are not afraid to face them. Show that you're affected by stress and pressure as well. Your staff will see you as a person and will relate to you more that way, making them easier to work with.
Overall, being a good supervisor is the best way to work well with your staff.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2013 David Livermore
Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on March 04, 2015:
These are really good points. Focus on their good qualities. All of us have those. Often, we just look at what we don't like and allow these to bog us down.
Satendra Kumar from India on November 11, 2013:
very useful information. thanks for sharing
Elizabeth Parker from Las Vegas, NV on August 20, 2013:
Wonderful advice. Sometimes it is so difficult to work with certain co-workers. In a big company, there are a lot of many different personalities and in a small company, it's almost like you feel pressured to get along, so these tips can definitely help!
peachy from Home Sweet Home on May 22, 2013:
greats tips and advice that I should have stumble before I lost my job. Lots of things to learn from your hub. Everyone should read this hub and gain more knowledge to become better employee and friends. Voted useful