Workplaces are a bit crazy sometimes in that a group of people who may or may not like each other need to be in constant contact in order to do their jobs. In some ways, it is a bit of a social experiment because most colleauges don’t get to choose who their other colleagues are – someone else makes the final decisions.

Add to this the fact that we all have our quirks and habits and beliefs and motivations and is it any wonder that many people find at least one person that gets on their goat. In our experience, nobody thinks they are they problem, it’s always the other person! Interesting right.

And this is where I would like to share what I call a ‘model of understanding’. It has three parts to it:

  • Common Reality
  • Strength Of Liking
  • Willingness To Communicate Properly

Think of these as three essential ingredients to ensure understanding and trust. When these three things are done well, almost always there is team harmony and commitment. When one or more of these things is not done well, there are problems.

Common Reality simply refers to ‘are we on the same page’. The only way to know if this is the case is to communicate, but if someone isn’t willing to communicate openly and honestly, then this isn’t possible. People like people who ‘are on the same page as me’ and who ‘communicate well’ because this is the foundation of trust. You can start to see how these three things interact.

If someone at your work doesn’t like you, the first thing to consider is whether that is just them, and therefore out of your direct control. However, to tip things in your favour, think about how you are communicating and whether you have chosen to get to know them. Have a conversation about them, learn about them, and what is important to them. By doing this, you are starting to form a common reality with others, and the fact that you are willingly communicating and ‘getting them’ goes a long way to increasing the Strength Of Liking factor.

If you are interested in developing any of these skills, book a career conversation with one of our experts or take our Clear Calm & Ready learning program. And remember, it’s not always your job to ‘make’ others like you, but there are many things you can do to make it easier for others to like you. These are skills upon which career success is based.