Manufacturing Excellence – Inspire, Lead, and Succeed by IMPROVING YOUR RELATIONSHIPS!

 Assumptions are the termites of relationships.

~ Henry Winkler
Isn’t it so true that in the race of climbing the ladder of success we often neglect the things that matter most, the relationships in our life?
How much is it really worth if you have everything that money can buy but the relationships with your loved ones are in turmoil, your friends are long gone because you never had time to connect with them, and you don’t seem to get a grasp on how to build better relationships with your employees and/or co-workers?
If our relationships at home are not going the way we would like, some of us may shut down and get frustrated and carry these issues to work. In addition, if we have difficulties building relationships at work, we may find it to be “mission impossible” to accomplish the things we want to accomplish, which also leads to frustration.
There is no denying it, relationships are important in our personal and in our professional life. To some people building relationships comes easily and is very natural. Thank goodness I am one of them. For others, it pushes them out of their comfort zone because they simply don’t feel comfortable engaging in small talk in order to connect with people.
I am sure you will agree that it takes a lot of hard work and effort to not only maintain but enhance the various relationships that we have in our life.
The question is: Why is it so difficult?
Personality differences?
Cultural differences?
Different values?
Lack of time?
Not having our priorities straight?
While I think it is a mix of all of the above, I also think one major thing is that we always tend to make assumptions as to what others are thinking. In our head we already know how the other person will act or react. Well, at least we think we know.
So how can you immediately start to improve the relationships in your life? The following tips are true for business and true for life.
          Be Aware
First of all you have to be aware that things are not as they should be and that you have to do something about it. Things will only start changing once you start taking the first step in the right direction.
          Focus on Yourself First
What are some things that you can do to improve your relationships? Perhaps you have to pick up the phone? Perhaps you have to have a conversation with someone and apologize to sort things out? Perhaps you have to share how you feel about a certain situation with someone in order to be able to move on? If a conversation doesn’t go the way you want it to go, ask yourself, “What could I have done differently?”
          Focus on the Positive Aspects of the Other Person
Usually we tend to focus on what we don’t like and we dwell on it. It’s always the other person’s fault. Did you know that we judge others by their actions but we judge ourselves by our intentions? Why not try it the other way around to give the whole conversation a positive spin?
          Set Relationship Goals
What is the ideal outcome for you? How would you like your relationships to be? At home, set relationship goals together with your partner and children. At work, work out a code of honour that keeps you and your team committed to the standards you’ve set together. 
Whether your relationship is with your spouse, family member, child, friend, supervisor, manager, customer or co-worker, you want to make your interpersonal relationships positive, supportive, clear, and empowering.  
If this is one of your main goals, you will see the difference that this will make in your life. If you want your relationships to be better, you have to be better!

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