Despite the complex, ever-changing world we live in, one thing remains true: the workplace is centered on relationships. They are the key to everything! So, being approachable at work is an important skill and quality to have.
Being approachable at work will allow you to build strong relationships and be invited to new experiences and opportunities. It will help you connect with others socially and professionally, which adds value and purpose to life.
With some increased self-awareness in these five areas, you can be more approachable at work and reap the benefits of stronger work relationships.
5 Areas to Be More Approachable at Work
1. Greeting and First Impressions
The first thing to consider is how you’re greeting people. What kind of impression are you making? Some research shows that people draw conclusions about you in just seven seconds.
Your first impression tells people whether you are warm and approachable—a friend—or not. Make a good first impression by taking a moment to smile warmly and greet someone. It’s simple, but effective.
2. Body Language
Your body language may be even more impactful than your words at some times. You want to give off signals that you are approachable and ready to engage.
Three ways to have approachable body language is to smile, give eye contact, and have an open posture. Start by being conscious of your body language and take note of how you show up in different scenarios with people around you. Then, you can adjust your body language and create a physical sense of approachability.
People genuinely want to be around optimistic people. And they become exhausted by negative people! So, if you are tilting closer to the negative side of the positivity meter, people might pull away from you.
Positivity, like all emotions, is contagious. Bring the positivity and it will increase your approachability. This doesn’t mean you can’t feel negative emotions, but it’s about being aware if you’re always bringing a bad mood to the room. It’s normal to fluctuate on the positivity-negativity scale, but you don’t want to always be negative.
4. Listening Skills
Curiosity and listening skills are essential for relationship building. Just think, when was the last time you deeply connected with someone and felt heard by them? It may not happen that often but makes a huge impact when it does.
Listening well shows that you value someone’s perspective and care about what they’re saying. This makes you approachable and will help you build strong relationships.
One key to listening well is to get curious and ask questions. Take a genuine interest in what someone else has to say and you’ll be known for your approachability.
People respond well to vulnerability and opening up. You don’t have to get into every deep, dark secret you have, but offering some simple, human connection is important. Vulnerability might be as simple as asking for help when you need it.
Approachability is the core of building strong relationships. It’s something that can be cultivated at the workplace by focusing on these five key areas. Don’t fade into the background at work, but be approachable so you can connect with others and grow in your personal and professional life.