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    Rapport and Connection Are the Keys to Work Success and Satisfaction

    By Julie Gleeson–

    I recently interviewed a wonderful career counselor who was hired to help a start-up company retain employees. As we spoke about the issues, it became clear that all of them were indicators of lost connection, trust or both. 

    People feel overworked—like their boss doesn’t care about them. They feel unrecognized and siloed. When they feel all of these things, they at least want to be paid well for the job that they hate. Addressing such concerns circumstantially, one by one, is a nightmare—and is almost never sustainable, even if there is some improvement. It is a bit like herding cats.

    But get to the heart of the matter, and something extraordinary happens. When the leadership and staff listen to connect with each other, the feelings of overwork go away. When the “other” is considered first, by everyone, people relax and work with an abundance of energy, wisdom and creativity. When people are trusted to care for themselves, as well as for the company, the sky is the limit.

    What exactly is connection? It is a feeling, and it includes things like respect, warmth, trust, and rapport. It is a setting aside of the annoyances in service of understanding. We all know it when we feel it.

    I recently heard about a very successful company that was growing and thriving—at the top of its industry—and with a very stable staff.  It caught the eye of a national consulting firm that convinced the ownership that they could be even better if a little pressure was applied to the employees. People were told (not collaborated with, but told) that they needed to produce more.

    The employees were monitored and watched. If they took a moment to relax, there were raised eyebrows from the new consultants on site. The staff complained, and were told either to get with the new program, or leave. Many did indeed leave. 

    It took a wise leader to finally wake up to the violation of trust that was occurring. The consultants were released, but trust and respect had to be re-established—a slow process, to say the least. The organization took a long time to heal.

    Consider what you struggle with at work. Do you experience respect for and from the others at your job? Are you listening to others and being listened to, and listening with full attention? Or are you actually doing three other things at the same time? If you feel defensive, try letting that go. If someone else is defensive, try listening to them more deeply. The more connection and rapport you can engender, the more the struggles will stop, and people will naturally take wise, respectful and insightful action.

    Oh, and that career counselor? She is relieved to know that she only has to concentrate on one thing. Her work will be done in a month or so, but her anxiety is lessened now that she knows that focusing on connection will turn the tide in favor of retention, satisfaction and stability.

    Julie Gleeson is the Co-founder of Career Wisdom Institute and the Founder of The Art of Living, Inc. She brings over 25 years of experience as a consultant in the fields of career designing, couples mentoring and resilience, stress and overwhelm elimination. Julie also co-authored a best-selling book, “Inside Job, 8 Secrets to Loving Your Work and Thriving.” She can be reached at Gleesonj@CareerWisdomInstitute.com or 925-408-8422. Check out her website for more information: www.careerwisdominstitute.com