How are your team doing with their professional relationships?

business collaboration, teams working together

During the pandemic lockdowns, incidental conversations stopped and communication had to be far more intentional. Some people only focused on the professional relationships they really needed to do their day job.

In the midst of hybrid working, some of the same challenges remain. It is easy to never see some people if you happen to be in the office on different days.

However, a few months into hybrid working post lockdown, it is important to assess where your team is with relationships. So I’m going to look at three categories of relationship in turn to help you think about this systematically.

  1. Relationships between team members. Are your team communicating with each other? Is there a sense of motivation, collaboration and active engagement with one another? It is so easy for misunderstandings and resentment to build up and negative ‘Office Politics’ to start. Do you need to do anything to re-establish good communication patterns or boost team morale? After all, you need your team to be an asset, not a burden!
  2. Internal relationships with other teams. Most teams need to work with other teams internally. Either to get ‘behind the scenes’ tasks completed, to deliver well for clients and/or to ‘sell’ more to clients than just the one original service they were engaged for. For instance, a good relationship between the conveyancing practice and the wills and trusts practice in a law firm is highly beneficial. There is a huge opportunity for cross-selling, but only if there are strong internal relationships. After all, nobody is going to refer a valued client onto someone (even someone internal) if they don’t know them and trust them to deliver well. Why not sit down with your team and map out the key internal relationships and related benefits? Identify any which have been neglected, new ones to be established and come up for a plan to work on the ones you need to.
  3. External relationships. As a team, who do you need to know externally? If you need to bring in new clients, then meeting referrers and potential prospects is an obvious one. However, it could be helpful to meet suppliers and other business connections too. Start with the goals of building external relationships, consider which relationships already exist and perhaps need reinvigorating, as well as new ones that need to be developed. Some ‘networking’ might be about individual meetings and coffees, whilst some might be about attending events. Again, work on a team plan and divide up the responsibilities.

None of us works on a deserted island in isolation, we need positive professional relationships at work to get things done and improve performance for the company/firm that will also help individual career progression. This is often going to take more planning and intentional focus in a hybrid working world. However, once your team understand the importance and have a plan, it will be a lot easier. If you would like a call to discuss this topic in more depth, then arrange a no obligation conversation with me by emailing my Assistant.

To read more about the skills your people need to give your company or firm a competitive advantage, complete your details on the link below to get access to a downloadable guide. You will receive a PDF with a page on each skill.

About the author

Joanna GaudoinJoanna Gaudoin, Inside Out Image specialises in helping ambitious professionals and their organisations improve performance and achieve their goals.

She does this by helping them master and strategically use the business skills of Personal Impact and Relationship Management. These skills are required for professional success.

Before establishing Inside Out Image, Joanna worked in marketing and consultancy in large corporates. She understands the business world and its challenges. She now helps organisations and individuals understand how to succeed in it.

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