Fostering a healthy working relationship with your teammates is as essential as establishing a good working relationship with your boss. But when you work from home, networking with fellow team members may be a challenging feat all because of the distance, the inability to see facial expressions, the differences in attitudes and views towards work. However, when you run a virtual office, you still have to foster the value of team work among other virtual professionals because at the end of the day, you only have one goal and you are all part of just one company. Here are some guidelines you can apply as you build relationships with your peers:
Take group meetings seriously. When there are scheduled meetings or group discussions, make sure that you are always present. Establish visibility (although only virtually) as
much as possible, and show up on time. Participate as the entire group tackles an agenda, and share your ideas. Exert an effort to mingle with fellow team members.
Be responsive to emails and other types of communication. Sure enough, email plays a valuable role in communication especially in a virtual office. Respond to email threads, acknowledge receipt of messages even the not-so-important ones. Exchange mobile phone numbers and keep communication lines open. If a team mate needs assistance, place a call to help out or even to just be a listening ear. Gestures like these somehow allow good relationships to flourish even in the virtual world.
Spend a little time knowing your teammates better. During off-work hours, chat a little with a workmate about anything but work. Talk about your interests, or share a little bit about your weekend to ease up the tension associated with work, and just relax with a new pal. You don’t have to share your entire lives though, but at least, the atmosphere between you and your workmates will lighten up and make room for fun stuff.
Share best practices and exchange ideas. Do not hesitate to share your techniques or strategies that work for your job. Initiate brainstorming sessions and respect your co-workers’ individuality. Acknowledge their ideas and make everyone feel how much their presence and cooperation is being valued.
Greet your workmates each day. Start your day with an inspiring quote, or even with a funny joke that will surely uplift everyone’s mood. Not only will you cheer up your peers’ day, you will also exude the sense of being approachable. When your peers feel that they can approach you anytime, they will tend to open up more to you and eventually start a fun working relationship with each other.
Do your share of the tasks. When a group has a project, most likely tasks are being delegated among its members. Do your end of the deal; make sure that you contribute to the success of the project as much as the others do. Do not just sit around doing nothing while your workmates are exerting so much effort to complete the project. Get involved and cooperate.
Good relationships with your teammates add pizzazz to your work life. Network and socialize a little. Who knows, you might find friends worth keeping for life.