Most of us have a “work-wife” or cubicle buddy. Do you have a love-hate relationship with yours like I do mine? I mean really, there are days when we laugh until we cry and there are days that we make each other cry being jerks. I think it’s easy to forget that most people who work a full-time job literally spend more time with their coworkers than they do with their family. Thus, it really doesn’t make sense to put a whole lot of effort into hating them. Why dread each day? Instead, maybe try some of these suggestions to manage a healthy relationship with your cubicle buddy.
- Spoil them on occasion. Likely you’re aware of their favorite snack or beverage. At lunch one day, bring it for them.
- Cover their back. If you share any responsibilities or functions, cover for them when they make a mistake. Create an understanding that while you may have some bad moments, you two will always be there for each other to face the boss. Dwight Schrute and Michael Scott from NBC’s Office are a classic (and obviously hilariously exaggerated) example of this.
- Respect their space. You spend plenty of time together, and probably chatting with each other as well. Absence can make the heart grow fonder, right? If they just don’t seem too chatty one day, don’t be offended. Also, in the age of all the technology we have at our fingertips…especially at a desk… be mindful of how loud your music plays, what you eat (especially if it has a potent smell) and any other noisy or smelly habits you might have.
- Praise them. In my job, though I’m a part of a team, I can have individual accomplishments. So can my work-wife. When I do a good job she high fives me. When she does a good job, I return the favor. I send an email to our team basically bragging how MY partner did a great job. She always giggles and says, “oh you didn’t have to do that”, but I can tell it makes her feel good.
Make the time you spend at work enjoyable and build professional, good relationships with your coworkers and cubicle neighbors.
IMAGE: Courtesy of eCardia