The prospect of making a new friend can either be an exciting idea or something that fills you with dread. The latter being more common than you might think. It’s a lot like dating. You have to put yourself out there. And while it may be scary, it’s (almost) always worth it. With workplace friendships we have to go back to basics, there are no apps for this. But that’s for the best, up close and personal is the best way to start a budding work friendship.
As humans we crave socialisation and the workplace is no exception. Most of the time work chat acts as a safety net, a common ground that you can start to build a friendship from.
The flexible workspace presents a different type of friendship. Meeting someone you don’t work with literally but in proximity. While you don’t share the details on your profits, or exchange emails about your latest project, you might sit next to them more days than not, and we think that in itself is a brilliant ground to start a friendship.
But where to begin? To celebrate the International Day of Friendship we’ve devised a list of ways to make the first move:
Is there anything that brings people together more than tea? Probably not. And at work doing a simple tea round is a gesture of friendship. What originates as a simple cup of tea, shows the co-workers around you your willingness to bond. And what originates as a tea run to the kitchen can turn into a friendly debate over how long you leave the tea bag in, sugar or no sugar, etc – (the possibilities are endless).
Even if you don’t work for the same company as a co-worker, you never know how you might come to their aid. Someone may need help on anything, from social media tips to advice on filing taxes. And even if they don’t take you up on an offer, demonstrating that you’re keen to help goes a long way.
Just like helping others, asking for help is a great way to bond, and make someone feel recognised for being good at what they do. Ask for help on something simple, like where to get lunch or make it official, and get their expertise in a project you are working on. Asking for help displays a more vulnerable side to yourself, allowing a friendship to grow.
Make It Eventful
Take part in events that are happening in the space you work in. Get to know people in a social setting, by stripping away the stresses of work life. Whether it be a networking event, a talk on sustainability or just a post-work pint, there’s a new friendship waiting to happen.
And while it may still be daunting to make the first move in a friendship, it won’t go unnoticed. You probably spend more time with the people that work around you than anyone else, so it pays off to forge friendships. And while they might not share the same boss or industry as you, the friendship you build is just as important to make your work life as rewarding as possible.
So, where should you start? AHQ holds a whole host of events every month, why not start something new at one of the events coming up:
Mann Island – 21st August
East Parade – 12th September