Working with colleagues is an important part of any job, but it’s crucial when planning meetings and events. When you’re growing relationships, it’s important to listen, plan and overcome challenges in order to have a successful event and a successful working relationship. A good working relationship doesn’t necessarily mean that you are best friends, but that you can work together personally and produce quality work together as a result.
When you first start a business relationship, it’s usually not completely unknown territory. In most cases, someone has recommended the person or company to you, or you have seen their work. As you start to foster this relationship, it’s best to find out the other person’s working style and how the two of you can mesh with ease. Some tips:
- Listen. Learn the other person’s preferred communications style (i.e., email, text, phone or face-to-face). If you can communicate together effectively, your relationship should grow easily. It’s also important to prepare for any questions or concerns that might arise. I truly think it’s important to do a SWOT analysis of sorts, and assess any and all Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and possible Threats from the point of view of the event, the new colleague, the team and how to proceed.
- Plan. By using the traditional tools of scheduling and follow-through, you can create trust together. Respect is key in all business relationships. By letting a counterpart know from the beginning that you respect his or her time, talent and delivery style, you start on an even playing field, create good karma and a positive working environment. Even with the most critical cohort, this sets the tone for the beginning of your relationship as well as for future projects.
- Overcome challenges. If a colleague seems hard to navigate or sometimes gets under your skin, try open communication to figure out why. You never know what’s going on in people’s lives, and it’s always better to err on the side of being forgiving and trying not to take things personally. If there is more than one situation, ask the individual what you can do to work with them better.
In the end, there will always be that one person who is extremely talented but hard to work with. If you know this going in, it can be easier on you and give you a sort of momentum in dealing with that kind of colleague. If you can work with difficult colleagues, you can be sure that you’re set up to succeed.
Next: MBEC 32.06 — Manage your time