Just like the Supremes sang, “You can’t hurry love.” Lasting love takes time and work. Relationships with your team members are similar.
There are no shortcuts. It’s going to take time. So, use the time to do things that develop strong relationships.
Connect. You can’t develop a relationship without connecting. And you may have to wait a long time for the other person to contact you. Take the initiative. Show up physically. If you’re part of a virtual team, reach out to make contact.
Have conversations. Conversations involve at least two people. Everybody gets to talk. Everybody needs to listen. Conversations are about lots of things, including work.
Pay attention. Pay attention to what people say and what they do. You’ll identify the things they value and the things they dread. Value is good. Dread is bad. Act accordingly.
Recognize important things. Important to whom? Why, to the other person, of course. If you’re paying attention you’ll learn what’s important so you can mention it at the right time.
Praise and say, “Thank you.” Praise effort and improvement as well as performance. Thank others for their time and effort and attention.
Forgive mistakes. We all make them and most of them don’t matter. In fact, you probably won’t remember most mistakes a month from now.
Help others make progress. Everyone wants to do better. Help the people around you make a little progress every day.
Boss’s Bottom Line
Great relationships are worth the time and effort. When you need them, it’s too late to start developing them.