Traits of a Good Coworker

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Of the various ways you can contribute to your employer, being a good coworker is one of the most important. Having likeable coworkers contributes significantly to a person’s desire to stay in their job. Therefore, by being enjoyable to work with, you can help your employer retain employees. Some people also see the desire to cultivate good relationships with coworkers as indicative of an employee who intends to stick around a company for a long time. Regardless of your goals, if you want to be a good coworker, try the following:

Be courteous.

It may seem simple, but in a busy office, common courtesy can go out the window. Take time to learn the names of your coworkers, and always greet them with a hello and eye contact. Say “please” and “thank you,” and avoid cursing at work. Even if you can get away with being more impolite, you may be amazed at how quickly being courteous gets you noticed.

Be willing to engage on a personal level.

You need to strike a delicate balance here, but when it seems appropriate, get to know your coworkers personally. Show them that you know their lives don’t start and stop at the office door by asking about their interests.

Spread credit around.

If you get help from your coworkers, make sure your supervisors know it. Also make sure your coworkers receive recognition when they go above and beyond on a project. Something as simple as knocking on your supervisor’s door to let them know that so-and-so really saved the project by working long hours the week before can make everyone in the office happy you’re there.

Respect your coworkers’ time.

Realize that your coworkers’ lives don’t revolve around you, and you’ll probably find they like you more. Only approach them with requests when they have time to deal with them, and avoid hovering around waiting for their attention or interrupting their breaks to ask for things.

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