We’ve all seen them. They’re blogs or articles with titles such as “10 Habits of Successful People” or “4 Painless Ways to Eat More Vegetables.” I recently learned these are called “listicles” and I love them. Whether it’s a listicle about food, travel, relationships, finances, or work, I find myself reading them in magazines and online.
Sometimes the topic is completely new to me, but a lot of the time, the lists serve as refreshers on a topic. The latter was true about a recent listicle that tackled the topic of ways to show friends and family you care. With the holidays around the corner, I skimmed the list of ideas. As I read, I couldn’t help but think about how applicable many of them were to a work environment as well. Since we’ve all heard the reports about the average employed American spending more time at work than at home, why not try to show your boss, employees, volunteers, or coworkers that you care?
Below are a few suggestions, inspired by the article I mentioned above, for showing others at work that you care. Some of them may seem simplistic, but small actions can go a long way toward a happier, more productive workplace.
- Be the first to reach out after a conflict. By doing this, you aren’t admitting fault. Instead, you’re showing the desire to understand the other person and to improve the working relationship.
- Do things no one in the office wants to do. No one really wants to clean up the break room or refill the printer paper, but someone will eventually have to do it. When you have a few free minutes or need a quick break from that tough project, be kind and take one for the team.
- Pay attention. Try to eliminate distractions and be fully focused on conversations with your coworkers. This will show that you respect their time and value what they are communicating.
- Give public acknowledgement. When appropriate, slip a “thank you” sentence to a coworker in a team email or mention your appreciation for their work on a project in a meeting.
- Cut them some slack. Everyone makes mistakes and everyone appreciates forgiveness. Unless it’s a serious or chronic issue, cut your coworker some slack and even offer to help with the solution.
- Be supportive of new goals. If someone at work has a new personal or professional goal, be sure to listen, check in with them on their progress, and celebrate when it’s been accomplished.