At the end of the day, work is still about the bottom line, producing, networking, and climbing the ladder (sound familiar?). Despite the behind closed door conversations and hard work we put in, I deeply believe that we need each other. No one got to where they are today alone. Community in the workplace is imperative to succeeding in the office and is why building relationships are so important to your career.
To Tell Me When I Have Pizza on My Face
I’m not going to know if I have pizza on my face, unless you tell me. A trusting community of people who care about each other, and who gives each other permission to point out blind spots, helps us to narrow the gap between our strengths and weaknesses. To not get stagnant or complacent, it is important to hold the bar high on being “for” one another with the goal being for everyone to up their game. As I always say, iron sharpens iron. Use your community to improve yourself, ask for honest feedback, and trust that the feedback is being given from a place of respect.
To be Re-Inspired By
We all have our creative genius. Some of the best ideas come out of impromptu brainstorming sessions. While you are analyzing numbers for your job, or struggles with customers, ask your community for help. Having a new set of eyes to look at your situation could offer a very simple solution that you weren’t able to see. (And we all like to have influence and be a value-add in someone else’s life.)
To Celebrate With
When things are going well, having community around builds you up. It gives you a group to celebrate the wins with. Remember the last time you all went out after work to the bar down the street for happy hour because your sales team surpassed your goals? Signing big contracts and picking up new clients doesn’t feel as good when you’re alone. Be careful to not pass up the opportunity to celebrate your colleagues successes, so when it’s your turn the entire team will be cheering alongside you.
To Get Messy With
Relationships are messy, which can only mean building a community at work will get messy. There are times that you are going to be angry with your community or want to quit because of something someone said or did. Community requires trust and openness. Everyone in the group needs to be selfless, making decisions that benefit the group. This is a lot to ask of individuals and as with every relationship you will need to extend grace. Accept that the messy times are there for the opportunity to build the relationship deeper.
Community is vital. If you don’t have it, find it. Create it. In order to be a highly successful leader in your industry you need to build community. You need to connect with your colleagues, employees, and co workers on deeper levels than just “I’m Fine.” Don’t quit when things get messy, and don’t settle on only celebrating the good times together. Encourage your community to get outside of their comfort zone together, to help build each other up, and support each other in both your personal and professional lives.