You’ve made it. You put in the hard work, finished your education and landed your first job in your chosen career. You are on your way to building a life you have always dreamed of. But as you begin your journey, it is important to remember that friendships in the workplace are not only a way to feel connected to your organization, they can provide many benefits besides having a lunch buddy. Social interaction at work can lead to a more cohesive work space, a feeling of teamwork and can even boost productivity. Read on for some tips to creating meaningful work friendships.

Learn Names

This may be obvious, but names are important to people. Do you find yourself more willing to listen to a sales pitch or buy a product if the salesman takes the time to learn your name? The same goes for forming personal relationships. Taking the time to learn the names of your coworkers shows you are sincere in your dealings with them, making them feel more welcome.

Bring Snacks

This goes beyond filling the tummies of those around you. It promotes an atmosphere of togetherness in the workplace. Most cultures find gathering around food to be informal and relaxing, which makes it the perfect way to form friendships. Just be aware there might be allergy restrictions among your coworkers.

Be Positive!

Nobody likes to work around someone who is constantly negative. Negativity breeds more of itself. On the flip side, a positive attitude is also contagious and can lead to a much happier and productive workday. Decorate your desk with fun pictures, be ready with a smile and a compliment. Staying positive during stressful times will contribute to an overall calm work atmosphere. 

Be Friendly (And Sincere)

Volunteer to help with a large task or offer to help carry that heavy box. Be open to discussions about hobbies or personal interests your coworkers have. If you concentrate on being personable and sincerely caring about your coworkers, they will be much more willing to open up to you. Do these things with authenticity. People recognize fake sincerity, so be honest with your communication and your desire to form bonds with your coworkers.

Making friends can be difficult, but, if you apply the above principles, you will be on your way to forming relationships that will stand the test of time. It will also make that commute and the long hours much more enjoyable.

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