Working Relationships, Relationships That Work: Healthy Workplace Friendships Focus on Professional Goals. (New You)

Article excerpt

We all need help from others in order to achieve our professional goals and objectives. In order to receive help from others, we need to develop healthy and productive working relationships, and sometimes these working relationships might evolve into friendships.

Let's be clear about the meaning of "friend." Webster's Dictionary defines "friend" as a person attached to another by respect or affection. Growing up, I was taught a friend truly cares about another person and would do anything (so long as not illegal) to help their friend. Haven't we all heard the maxim: "A friend in need is a friend indeed"?

With these thoughts in mind, what are ways in which a workplace friendship can be an asset? For starters, anytime you help someone, especially when they are in need, you gain another person likely to help you when in need. The more friendships you cultivate, the easier it will be for you to achieve your goals and objectives. Secondly, when internal corporate political matters arise, as they always do, you have more advocates and protectors on your side.

Consider the following advice: Limit the friendships you develop at work to professional or workplace friendships, focusing on helping each other achieve professional goals and objectives. This is not to say you shouldn't develop social friendships with others with whom you work; this is to say that socializing with co-workers is best limited to doing so solely with others at your level in the organization. …

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