Keep It Real in the Workplace | Nuscreen Inc.

Keep It Real in the Workplace

In an office setting it’s common practice to put up personal walls to keep the peace with co-workers and maintain a calm workplace setting.

After all, the nail that sticks out gets hammered down, right?

A corporate culture can remove parts of people that we identify with as being human. Work is where most of us spend a good chunk of our day, it’s important to remember that we contribute to our work environments. Work relationships force us to create boundaries whether between co-workers or clients. We dress, speak write and act a certain way — some might call this professional, but often it is robotic and unauthentic. We get stuck between what’s right and what’s right for right now.

There’s a real problem happening at the workplace and it’s the one nobody is talking about; everyone is avoiding conflict.

Nobody wants to rattle a cage or ruffle a feather. Instead of speaking up, heads go down, voices lower and many opt to do what they are told rather than come up with something new that may be shot down. Unhealthy relationships are formed between companies and their clients or customers. Rather than having open dialogues about what we’re thinking, we bottle it up and end up having odd and uncontrolled outbursts that are damaging.

Open communication is key in keeping it real at work.

I see this often between agencies and clients; agencies are too afraid to tell a client that their idea isn’t the best solution, so instead they execute on a poor idea, resulting in the client losing trust in the expertise of their agency. This also happens with the food service industry. A patron is out for dinner and when asked by the waiter how their meal is they smile politely and then go home and write a Yelp review to rip them apart.

Addressing conflict and disagreeing with someone you work with is never easy, so just like anything you aren’t very good at — work at it and get better. Be a great communicator. Learn how to communicate your point properly and understand where others are coming from.

Even though in the short-term it may be easier to smile and agree, I challenge you to value the long-term relationship with that person at work and also your own reputation.

Some tips to effectively disagree at work:

· Understand what outcome you are looking for, communicate that to the other person so everyone is working toward a common goal

· Separate factual information from emotions or exaggerated points

· Attack problems, not people

· Communicate to be understood never to complicate, confuse or condescend

Keeping it real doesn’t always mean there has to be a problem. Keep a positive workplace culture by connecting with your co-workers and clients in a real way. Knowing someone on a more personal level will give you context to why they make the decisions they make.

Can’t find good, honest people at work? Be one.