How to Make Friends at Work [The Dos and Don’ts]

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You probably have a few people to make small talk with at work. These people aren’t anyone special, but they help pass the time. But ask yourself this, do you have friends at work?

Socializing is an essential element of human evolution. You’ll likely end up on a downward spiral without people to socialize with. We need friends to go out for dinner, talk to when things aren’t going great, and go on vacations, among other things.

But being in a new environment makes it difficult for some people to make friends. If you’ve just recently started a new job, you might find making friends at your workplace difficult.

Although it’s natural to feel shy when entering a new environment, we will tell you how to make more friends at work. So, here are the dos and don’ts of making friends at the workplace.

How to Make Friends at Work: The Do’s

1. Initiate the First Conversation

Suppose you’re shy and find it difficult to start a conversation in a new environment. Chances are, there’s someone else equally shy as you. But you need to beat the shyness by engaging with others. One way to become a more confident person is to go and say hello.

This will not only be a huge confidence boost, but it will help you make friends at work. The issue of workplace socializing is even bigger nowadays. Since many of us have had to work from home, it is difficult to integrate into our new surroundings when we suddenly have to come to the office.

Working from home has its benefits but can also affect us negatively. That’s why people need to take care of their mental health when working from home, especially when you have to make another transition and come into the office.

So the next time you’re at the office, go and say hello to your coworkers and start making small talk about getting to know them better. Especially be friendly to the onboarding of new hires.

2. Attend After-Work Events

After-work events are the best way to make new friends at the workplace. Some call them “happy hour,” as it usually refers to everyone going out for drinks after work. And make no mistake, you will loosen up once you see how laid back everyone else is.

After-work events are also a form of team building. While never in the traditional sense, these events are social by nature and coworkers go out to get to know each other better. If the office is planning a party, join in and contribute. Maybe make the cards, buy the cups, or something else that needs attending.

Doing this will allow you to interact with your coworkers and increase your standing in the core social group.

3. Be Positive

We must stress the energy you give out as overly important when making friends at work. Namely, very few people actually enjoy being in the company of someone with bad or negative energy. While it might look impossible to put on a facade and act like nothing bad is happening to you, being positive is the best way to attract others.

This stems from the fact that people love being in the company of positive people. If you constantly complain about life at work and home, you deter people from talking to you. No one wants to hear that, as chances are they are dealing with their own problems. So be positive, and you’ll have an easier time making friends.

How to Make Friends at Work: The Don’ts

1. Don’t Gossip

No one likes a gossip girl at work. Although people have problems and like to discuss them with others, the workplace is absolutely not the place to gossip. Sure, you can complain about problems and people, but you should be careful not to end up being labeled the office “gossip girl.” Moreover, you have no idea whos friends with who. What might seem like harmless gossip can end up creating so much drama.

So keep your feelings about others to yourself, or you’ll find it challenging to make new friends at work. People that gossip to others will eventually turn their backs and betray the people closest to them.

2. Don’t Reveal too Much too Soon

You never know whos working at the office. By that, we simply mean the character of the person. You never know if the person is ready to hear your deepest desires or secrets. A rookie mistake when trying to make new friends at work is revealing too much of your personal life too soon.

A piece of pro advice is keeping the conversation light and avoiding revealing personal struggles.

3. Don’t Bring Smelly Food

There’s always that one person that makes the office refrigerator want to barf. No matter how much you try to avoid it, the bad smell from the food they bring to the office is enough to ruin your day.

One of the last golden rules of making friends is to not become a nuisance to others with your actions. So even if you love a smelly cheese sandwich or fish for lunch, don’t bring it to the office.

Conclusion

That concludes the dos and don’ts of making friends at your workplace.

Following these simple rules will allow you to easily make friends and stay in the core office social group.

In addition, these rules aren’t difficult to follow and will allow you to learn more about the people you work with.

All that’s left is to keep a level head and establish lasting relationships with your coworkers.

Written by:

Erik Bergman co-founded Catena Media and helped grow it to over 300 employees and a $200 million valuation before stepping away to start Great.com, an iGaming organization that donates 100% of its profits to environmental charities. In addition to running a successful online affiliate business, Erik also hosts the Becoming Great podcast, shares entrepreneurship tips with his more than 1 million social media followers, and contributes to sites like Entrepreneuer.com, Business Insider, Foundr, and Forbes.

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