Updated: Apr 25
When we think of work we don't often think of encouragement. Much like with siblings, colleague relationships can be filled with competition for resources and time. We compete to be the one who the boss favors with time (and money!). We want to be noticed as better than someone else at work. We want our efforts to be rewarded in some way and we tend to view that as a win-lose prospect: we get the reward and someone else doesn't.
However, encouraging our colleagues can go a long way toward business success. Forbes points out that when colleagues share knowledge, help someone with a task, share resources, tell about opportunities, introduce them to helpful people in your network, and acknowledge their hard work in public are just a few of the ways we can encourage our colleagues without jeopardizing our own position and success trajectory. These are non-competitive ways to show we care about our fellow workers.
Like in all relationships, a kind word and gratitude go a long way. Has your colleague been missing some work? Just check in with a text*. Maybe bring a cup of coffee for your officemate on a Monday. Even a "drive-by" comment as you walk past their door, something like, "Hey Boyd, loved the reminders in the email this morning!" will help to lift someone's day without hurting your success (1 Thessalonians 5:11).
Most of us have enough to do at work, so I'll try to keep work suggestions simple and easy. This one is great to start today!
What kind word can you share with a colleague today?
* Be careful about cross-sex encouragement. A well-meaning text or caring inquiry can easily be misinterpreted as romantic or sexual interest. Be very careful to keep your words and nonverbals from being flirty if you are married.
Additional resources: As an Amazon Affiliate I may receive a small commission for purchases made through links on my website. For more info see the About Me page.
John C. Maxwell is one of my very favorite business communication and leadership authors. Anything by him is a go-to in my opinion!
I haven't read this one but it looks interesting!