2 min read

3 Ways to Start a Conversation When You’re Struggling to Connect with a Coworker

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  • Coworker relationships don’t come easy for many in the professional landscape
  • Building a stronger connection with coworkers can enhance productivity and job satisfaction
  • Starting a conversation that puts the coworker at ease and gets the talking is one way to bridge a connection

Let’s face it, work relationships can be awkward, especially when you’re the new person on the team. You and your coworkers might have common work goals, but sometimes it’s a stretch to find anything else in common. It isn’t necessary to be best friends with your coworkers, but a comfortable and open line of communication can do wonders for your team’s productivity – not to mention, make your workday more enjoyable.

We’ve all been in the position of struggling to connect with a coworker, employing awkward conversation starters which only seemed to widen the gap. Whether you just want to open the lines of communication, or you need a better connection for a team project, these 3 conversation starters can get the dialogue flowing in a more natural way.

Causal Questions to Get the Other Person Talking

When starting a conversation with a coworker, try expressing some interest in them outside of the person they are at work. You don’t want to get too personal here, but casual questions that get the person talking about their likes/dislikes, experiences and opinions are a great way to build camaraderie.

For instance, something simple like “I was thinking of trying a local restaurant for lunch, what are your favorites?”. Follow this up with an inquiry about the atmosphere, best dishes on the menu, or other open-ended questions that keep the conversation going. Ask questions to show that you’re listening and respond with experiences of your own.

Ask For Help

We all want to feel valued for our skills and expertise on the job. When given the opportunity, most people are more than willing to share what they know with someone who is in need of insights or advice. If you know a coworker shines in a particular area, approach them for their professional input on something you’re working on – even if you don’t exactly need the help. You might be surprised what you learn from a new perspective.

Talk About Something That Interest You

Some people aren’t natural conversationalist and will shy away at direct questions about themselves. If you’re having difficulty connecting with a coworker who is on the more reserved side, switch gears and talk about yourself instead. For example, talk about how you’re remodeling the kitchen, attended a local event, or even how your alma mater is crushing it (or not) in collegiate sports. You might strike a chord of commonality between the two of you, and at the very least you’re showing that you’re open and approachable.

Move Forward and Connect With a New Career Opportunity Today

New career opportunities come with the chance to connect with a growing network of talented individuals in the IT industry. Each new opportunity brings challenges and rewards that add fuel to your career. When you’re ready to see what awaits you, reach out to nTech Workforce. We provide IT staffing solutions and can place you with top companies. Contact nTech Workforce today to discover what awaits.

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