Why do you want to invest in an office “relationship”

Do you have a good relationship with people at work?

I don’t – I do not invest in the time to build one, is not bad or anything that way, I just do not know how long I would be in a place. You older you get, the harder it becomes to make friends at work, as you becoming the older statesman at work.

In global multi-cultural organizations, people tend to form office relationships based on cultural, language and age.

Cultural – People tend to form relationship in the office based on cultural background, find out for yourself at the next Christmas party or company gathering, if you pay attention you would see that people gravitate towards the cultural background.

What can the organization do: As society are becoming more multi-cultural, an organization is responsible for integrating people to the cultural and language of operation.

Language – Even if English is the language of business in a global organization, for most people that have English as a second language, the English learnt depends from were they are from and the English vocabulary differs by person. This opens up to miscommunication, misunderstanding of a request and can create tensions. A person can come across differently by starting a sentence with “I” instead of “We”.

What can the organization do: An organization is responsible for training individuals in language skills, specifically in office communication language skills.

Age – People tend to form alliance based on age  – their are generational gaps formed in organizations, and “grey-zone” boundaries are formed, in politics are form. As older people have more life and work experience, an organization should take advantage of this and use older workers as mentors of growing the knowledge capital of the organization. It is amazing how much knowledge goes wasted in an organization.

What can the organization do: An organization should map out the skills and background of each employee, and make sure to take advantage of skills and experiences that older worker have gained, employees should be managing the life cycle of employees to maximize the knowledge base of the organization.


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