Forgetting to water a plant is a common occurrence in my house. I do try to pay attention, but the results are not pretty… plants very quickly (well it feels quickly to me) start to droop, wilt and then the petals drop off. This is not a good place to be.
As I am discarding the old plant there is always a good reason (aka excuse) for the neglect…
"I was on holiday"
"I didn't realize you have to water cacti" (you do)
"I was busy and just didn't see the plant wilting"
“I thought you were taking care of it”
In my work with leaders and companies I find the same situation happens at work. We forget to pay attention to the important things, like cultivating effective relationships with our colleagues and our workplace connections will wilt. While this may not be reflected in fallen petals it does become apparent in missed deadlines, tense meetings and interactions, or not being available when needed. Ultimately performance suffers, for us and for them.
You don’t need to have green thumbs to cultivate powerful relationships at work. It is basic common sense that unfortunately many of us forget to implement. Here are six questions that you can use to nurture your Ally relationships:
- What's been happening since we last spoke?
- What’s working well?
- What’s getting in the way of your/our success?
- What have I done to amaze you recently?
- How have I missed expectations?
- What is one thing I could do differently to help you/us?
These are my "pulse-check questions" for cultivating winning relationships. You don't have to ask all six questions in one go, it is OK to spread them out over a few meetings. I try to ensure I am asking these questions of my critical stakeholders and professional colleagues. The secret to success is to ask them, listen to the answers and then take the appropriate action.
How will you cultivate your winning relationships?
My challenge to you - pick ONE of these questions and pose it to a colleague. In doing so you will find out how quickly you can cultivate a better relationship!
This blog has focused on nurturing existing relationships. If you’ve been blindsided by a colleague; or if you are plagued with the worst of office politics, shifting alliances and silos, then be sure to attend our webinar on November 15th. We will go in-depth on how to build strong work relationships while diffusing the toxic ones. Register here: