Enjoying your job stems from more than just the work you do. Anyone who’s experienced having a great coworker or having a not-so-great coworker can attest to how critical it is to have positive relationships with the people you spend your professional life with.
To learn how to make the most of your in-office relationships, we asked the experts in UF Warrington’s Department of Management for their best tips on being a good coworker. Read on for their research-backed advice.
Don’t be rude
“While it seems like a no-brainer when it comes to being a good coworker, being rude can have devastating consequences on people. Our research has shown that being rude to someone impacts their wellbeing and functioning. Specifically, it affects their cognitive ability, even when they are highly motivated, and impacts their working memory. In studies involving medical staff, we’ve found that when they experience rudeness, medical professionals are more likely to make mistakes. Our research also shows that rudeness spreads. Even if rude behaviors are unintentional, they can still impact others, leading to an even wider range of individuals who can experience a decline in performance and decision making due to rudeness.” – Amir Erez, W.A. McGriff, III Professor
Be a perspective thinker
“To be a good coworker, being able to train yourself to be a perspective taker is important. When you think from another person’s perspective, and imagine that you are walking in their shoes, it enables you to engage in ‘good coworker’ behaviors, like not being rude (as noted in the first tip) and empathizing, which improves your interactions with others.” – Amir Erez, W.A. McGriff, III Professor