We are heading towards (allegedly) the most ‘romantic’ day of the year, and what’s even better it falls on the weekend so no rushing home from work to head out for that candle-lit dinner.
It got me thinking about what makes a happy long term marriage or relationship? Are the skills you need to be successful in your personal relationship any different to those you need to succeed in your chosen career?
The top of the charts is ‘communication’ and having become an avid fan of ‘The Good Wife’ recently, this skill is vital to a successful relationship. It also has a huge impact on every part of a business. Whether it is improving employee wellbeing or staff morale, making more sales or getting your message across the list is endless. Poor communication causes relationship breakdown whether at home or at the office so think about how you communicate. Follow the 7 C’s of communication and really consider the message you want to send and the best way of sending it.
Conflict resolution is another life skill which is essential to a happy relationship. We all know we sometimes have to ‘forgive and forget’ to move forwards, get back on track and when we love the other person and want to be with them it is easier - it will bring us personal happiness. Is it that much different at work though? We have all seen people leave jobs because of a problem that couldn’t be resolved. Would you be as quick to leave your relationship? I hope not. If we really ‘love’ our job and have loyalty for the organisation wouldn’t it better to use our conflict resolution skills to resolve the problems? Conflict resolution is difficult, especially for people who don’t like confrontation, but it will lead to a healthier and happier place of work.
The longer we are with someone the more we know about them. I know that my husband is a 15.5 shirt collar, even though I don’t buy his shirts very often. This information makes us comfortable together and life easier. So how much do you know about your team or the people you work with every day? You don’t need to become their new best friend and know everything that is going on in their personal life, but what do they enjoy? How do they drink their tea? Are they a morning or an afternoon person? Do they have external factors that could be impacting on them at work? We all like to talk about ourselves and showing an interest in a colleague will build a stronger relationship and loyalty. Remember it needs to be sincere, you wouldn’t ask you partner ‘how was your day’ but not be interested in the reply, would you?
It is said that ‘we take out our stress on those closest to us’ so after a bad day at work how are you when you get home? Well this isn’t my strong point but I have got better at managing my own stress so that it doesn’t impact on my home life as much and I hope you do the same. The commute home is a great place to start. Think about what went well today, what didn’t, what you need to do tomorrow and create a to-do list. Reflect, compose and calm. When you get home you will be ready to engage with your family. What happens in the office though? How do you act around your employees when you are faced with a challenging situation? If you feel yourself getting particularly stressed out, and you are at risk of striking out (verbally) why not try going to a quiet room and doing some deep breathing or if you are more of a vocalist shut the door and shout. Look at the challenge and think about how it can be resolved, ask your team for help in a positive way. Don’t be the person who sucks the life out of the office.
For those observant readers out there you may have notice I haven’t touched on romance even though it is the most romantic weekend of the year, but there are some life skills that should purely remain in the home! Have a great weekend.