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I believe healthy work relationships lead to more positive, happier work environments so I want everyone to get along, however, personalities can clash, conflicts can ensue, and people can end up being miserable in their work environment.

At A+ Staffing, we have two completely different work situations going on.  We’ve got internal employees who have daily interaction within the A+ offices. Then we’ve got temporaries, such as Catering Staff, Bartenders, Brand Ambassadors, Field Marketing Managers, Registration Staff, Trade Show Staff, Event Staff, Greeters, Street Teams, etc. who work with a variety of people outside an office. In either case, learning how to deal with different personalities and building healthier relationships is crucial for everyone.

Benefits of Building Work Relationships

You might have the mentality of just get in, do the job and go home. It’s not necessarily a bad thought process, but you could be missing out. Job satisfaction is directly correlated to having a healthier lifestyle.

Building better work relationships allows you to have someone to talk to, work together with and share skill sets. Instead of feeling like The Hunger Games, work feels more like a professional environment where people respect each other. Plus, it can even reduce stress when you get to work with people you like and that don’t add drama to your life.

Handling Conflicts with Co-Workers

You’re not going to be best friends with everyone. It’s just not possible. However, you have to learn to deal with conflicts. It could be something as simple as not agreeing on politics or something more major such as getting blamed for them not doing their job. There are actually a variety of different types of negative co-workers you may have to deal with.

First, always avoid discussing controversial topics. Just agree to disagree and let the conversation go. For personalities you just can’t mesh with, keep discussions to strictly work-related topics and avoid gossip.

For severe issues, you may need to schedule a meeting with your manager and the co-worker in question. This can be a good first step before heading to HR. Whether you meet with your manager or HR, having a third party to help sort things out makes a difference.

Sometimes, it’s best to just confront the co-worker. Be nice, but don’t back down. Try to find common ground and a way to work together without any issues. It’s a good idea to have a third-party as a witness just in case things get out of hand.

Dealing with Management Issues

What if it’s management and not just a co-worker? In this case, talk with your manager about your concerns. For instance, if your manager’s approach is to make you a to-do list and disappear, only to get angry if you ask a question, explain why that doesn’t work for you and if there’s a better way to resolve unclear instructions.

Don’t be afraid to go to HR if the situation escalates.

Maintaining Boundaries

Sometimes, the best way to deal with conflicting personalities and issues with co-workers is to maintain boundaries. Limit how often you interact. You may change your path through the workplace to avoid getting into arguments. Most importantly, give and ask for respect. It’s always better to get along professionally than try to force a friendship.

Building Better Work Relationships

Building better work relationships has been proven to lower turnover rates. It also makes you, as an employee, happier. So, try to build and improve work relationships.

  • Take responsibility for your own actions
  • Don’t just talk, but listen as well
  • Control your emotions
  • Try to create mutually beneficial situations, such as sharing ideas or working together on something difficult
  • Build trust
  • Work to understand different personalities
  • Respect different opinions

I know it won’t always be easy, but it’s worth the time and effort. There’s a reason why so many people call their co-workers their work family.