How to Choose the Right Friends at Work

Making friends at work is one of the most important routes to making the workplace a happy environment, mostly if you spend at least 30 hours weekly working. Many of us spend more time with our colleagues than we do with our families and we are eventually going to retire at a later age, meaning we’ll spend most of our lifetime with work colleagues. That’s why work friends are necessary to balance your social life while also making your job easier.

Having friends at work does not only bring happiness, it’s a source of productivity and as well as creativity required to get your job done. However, choosing the right friends at work is also important. Friendship doesn’t go well without vulnerability. And what if it fizzles? The fallout could be very expensive with the wrong friends. We will briefly outline few tricks on how to choose the right friends at work.

Be available

You can’t be hiding yourself to access people or even get to know them the way you should. Try to participate if your office is hosting a social gathering or any event that would allow you to meet colleagues socially. It could be children’s activities, sports, clubs, etc. But if there are no such activities at your workplace, then you should try having lunch together so you could have access to social conversation with most of your colleagues when possible.

Find what you have in common

You should be able to spot if your personal values coincide with a colleague or not by listening to conversations. Take your time to evaluate if the things they opt for is what you would choose in their narratives. At this stage, your topics would be best if they are not related to work and not too personal. For instance, you may discuss the latest movies if you both enjoy films. If your colleague is into sports or fitness, you may ask about gym routines and the body parts he or she is working on. These few conversations would expose some level of qualities and create sincere friendship path which you would decide on taking if you both have common qualities.

Consider taking sometime

Making friends at work requires a gradual stop. Do not throw yourself in because you have seen the qualities you want. What if your colleague hasn’t recognized you yet? It’s still possible that someone is still hiding a very bad side that you can’t take from work friends. Be patient and let it flow gradually.

Maintain your space

You must also be the right friend to make good friends at work. Your friendship may have started going smoothly finally, but remember that friendship takes a new level every day. Remember there are things you shouldn’t discuss at work. Don’t go into details and reveal all sorts of personal information. Know your bounds and strictly respect that position, sticking with the usual conversations. Even the right friends at work could leave when you begin to bring in details that are not necessary.

Priyansha Mistry
Currently editor at The HR Digest Magazine. She helps HR professionals identify issues with their talent management and employment law. | Priyansha tweets at @PriyanshaMistry

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