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How To Make Friends At Work: 8 Proven Tricks to Building Your Professional Social life

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how to make friends at work

Many people tend to feel awkward and uncomfortable when meeting with other people at work. From longtime members to fresh faces, they often don’t know how to speak to them. Some may even treat workmates as strangers, interacting with them only when the job demands it. If you are like these people, you might end up having no friends at work.

Your workspace is full of potential lifelong friends and allies. You’re likely to meet the same people daily in that place. It’d benefit you and them. Here are some reasons why you need to know how to make friends at work.

Why Workplace Friendships Matter

It Builds A Sense of Camaraderie

When you make friends at work, you build a sense of belonging and unity. You’re all on the same boat, even if each is assigned different tasks or departments. Ultimately, you and your coworkers are helping each other out as you focus on projects that require all your attention. Once you know how to make friends in office, you’ll quickly build bridges that you might have never expected. The best part of making friends at work is building a sense of morale and trust. It might be professional to trust your editor, but if you got along with that person, you’d feel more comfortable and assured.

It Helps Relieve Stress

We all know that work can be stressful, especially when you have urgent tasks to finish. That kind of frustration and pressure slowly builds up inside. The good thing about having friends at work is that you don’t need to hold it in. When you take the time to speak and relay your frustrations, your colleagues can both sympathize with and comfort you. The best way to start making friends at work is to show your vulnerable side when you need their help.

Similarly, you can help relax a coworker who feels on edge or is nervous about their output. By having friends at work, you all build a network of confidantes with which you can share your gripes or fears. This network can help you all stay sane and mentally focused when it’s time to start working again.

It Improves Your Performance

Friends look out for each other, especially when working on projects or assignments. For example, I could always trust my friends to help me find the correct answers to an upcoming exam or research paper. Similarly, your coworkers are one of the best sources of information in the office. They can advise you on how certain things need to be done, from the branding of a logo to the style of an article. It’s easier to accept their input and examine their comments when you’re friendly with your colleagues. Understanding them allows you to see their point of view and judgment calls. It’s not just how you make friends at work; it’s also about discovering ways to improve and strengthen each other’s skills.

How to Make Friends at Work In Eight Bona Fide Steps

As you can see, making friends at work can help your game and keep you sane. Beyond having a good time, you’ll also build trust with professionals and experts who want to help you be your best. We might still struggle with how we can start breaking the ice. Here are eight bona fide tricks on how to make friends at work.

1. Introduce Yourself and Make Small Talk

The first step to making friends in the office is simple: take the initiative. You might have a formal introduction to everyone at work, but the real effort comes when you can do so in your way. Making friends at work sometimes means finding the people you want to befriend.

Small talk also helps when you’re trying to break the ice. Keep it simple, like introducing yourself and asking how long they’ve worked in the company. In one short sentence, you explain who you are, and you can learn more about the people around you.

Talking about work with new colleagues is fine, especially since you’re getting to know each other. Once you’ve built trust, you can explore more personal topics like music or relationships. Otherwise, your efforts might seem invasive.

2. Invite Your Colleagues to Lunch or Snacks

Food is always a good start to forming friendships. Simply inviting people from work for a quick meal or lunch break can help you start making new friends. You can show each other lovely places to eat and relax by going together. Also, you can quickly understand their tastes by learning their go-to meals. Some may like savory foods or salty treats. Others might have a sweet tooth or a penchant for coffee. Whatever food you guys enjoy, it’s always a good topic to start a conversation. You can even bring them snacks as a small gift to show your appreciation or to build a new bridge. It’s quick and easy way to start making friends in the office; plus, it gives you something to satisfy your tummy when you need a quick fix.

how to make friends at work invite them to lunch

3. Create A Group Chat

Making friends at work doesn’t have to be a face-to-face effort. With the pandemic, several people have resorted to virtual offices and online workspaces for their daily lives. In the same way, you and your colleagues can build a group chat through platforms like Facebook, Discord, or Telegram. These spaces allow you to quickly message and share your thoughts to everyone to a particular person. It’s fast and convenient, especially if you’re going to be at the desktop or laptop all day.

4. Join Team-Building and Out-Of-Office Events

There’s a reason why many companies and businesses like team-building exercises: they can be a fun way to teach trust and encourage bonding amongst employees. These can work best when you take the initiative to participate. Imagine it’s a PE class, and you can join any group. Don’t be the kid who sits on the bleachers and avoids everyone. You can learn more about your colleagues by joining these team events or out-of-office activities. You might discover their musical taste or previous jobs before joining the company. In addition, team-building events can incorporate practical skills like meditation and cooking. You can hit two birds with one stone once you participate because you can make new friends and learn a new hobby.

 

5. Take Time to Praise Each Other

Remember that your coworkers are also doing projects of their own. They might have just completed a month-long task or a week’s worth of documents. If you notice that they’ve finished their work, walk over and congratulate them. It’ll make them feel better, as you would if someone praised you for a job well done. If you want, you can even take time to review their work and offer some insight. This way, they can give you feedback and examine your work. 

By supporting each other, you gain essential information on your job and feel more satisfied overall. Plus, positive actions always breed positive energy. In other words, the more you praise and congratulate someone, the better both of you feel for the rest of the day. Not only do you show how you make friends at work, you also give people the emotional strength they need to keep working hard.

6. Introduce Personal Friends to Coworkers

Sometimes, it’s hard to bond with your colleagues because you already have a tight group of friends. While that’s not bad, making new friends at work can be trickier. One way around this is to introduce your friends to your coworkers. Sometimes, your friends are more effective in building new relationships and can ease tension better. Once your coworkers feel comfortable around your personal friends or loved ones, they’ll likely grow closer to you too. This way, you learn how to make friends at work and how to connect them to your personal group of buddies.

7. Avoid Gossip

One of the most significant issues in the workplace is when gossip pops up. Some coworkers like to talk down or speak ill of their colleagues. Chatter like that might tempt many people to join the conversation and pick a side. However, it does not do anything helpful in the end. Picking a side only creates enemies, and this grudge may linger even when the gossip dies. Don’t react or join in if you get pulled into the conversation. Soon enough, it’ll go away, and you won’t have any problems to deal with in the meantime. The last thing you want to do is start grudges or personal issues, as that can leave you with no friends at work.

how to make friends at work avoid gossip

8. Be Authentic

You might feel the need to boast or show off our best behavior. Everyone may want to look good and admirable in front of their coworkers. However, there are times when it comes off as fake or unreal. The biggest issue is that people think you’re pretending or hiding something else. The best way to make friends is to be yourself and stay authentic. You don’t need to brag or invent a funny story about your past. Be honest and share stories with your colleagues. The more open your life is, the easier it will be for others to trust and like you. 

Sometimes, the easiest way to show how to make friends at work is to just be yourself.

In Summary

Making friends at work is an integral part of your life. Having friends in the workspace can build trust and reliable support systems. In addition, taking the time to speak with them outside of work can help you relax and unwind after the shift is over. With these eight tips on how to make friends at work, you can start today and better get to know the people around the office. The more you know, the more you can help foster a strong emotional bond that can give more help and strength than any workplace program.

  1. Indeed Editorial Team. (2020, March 31). 14 Ways To Make Friends at Work (And How To Do So Professionally). Indeed Career Guide. Retrieved from: https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/career-development/how-to-make-friends-at-work
  2. Kaado, B. (2022, June 29). Why It’s Good to Have a BFF at Work. Business News Daily. Retrieved from: https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/6759-friends-at-work.html
  3. Liu, C. (2020, June 19). 12 Different Ways to Make Friends at Work (Even if They’re Just “Work Friends”). The Muse. Retrieved from: https://www.themuse.com/advice/12-different-ways-to-make-friends-at-work-even-if-theyre-just-work-friends
  4. Zambas, J. (2022, May 2). 20 Proven Ways to Make Friends at Work. CareerAddict. Retrieved from: https://www.careeraddict.com/work-friends

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