Have you ever thought about how much time you spend working?
90,000 hours in a lifetime!
Many of us spend more time at work than with our families and friends. But we aren't always our true selves at work, for reasons like:
You're the only women in a male-dominated office
Your primary language or customs are different than your coworkers
You can't connect to workplace small talk (e.g. sports or family)
No one wants to be alone, so we may try to fit in like a chameleon. But you can be your authentic self at work, and you'll be better off if you do.
Enhance Your Relationships
Being yourself at work strengthens your relationships and builds trust. When you are your true self, others are attracted to you for who you are - like bees drawn to a flower!
How can you show authenticity while at work?
Show your personality
Share your interests and hobbies
Engage and actively listen
When you and your coworkers have an authentic connection, working together becomes easier and more natural.
Like the flower, be you and shine. Watch others come to you.
Tyrone is finding it difficult building relationships with his coworkers. Which action could most likely be the reason?
Creating An Open Work Environment
The saying "One bad apple can spoil the bunch" talks about one person negatively affecting others.
What if we changed the statement to look at those positive people, "One good apple benefits the bunch?"
By being authentic, you become a role model which can inspire others to be authentic too.
You can model authenticity by:
Being open about mistakes
Sharing feedback and thoughts
Showing your personality through your work
Let's look at an example regarding coworkers.
Richard: "Did you contact the customer about their return?"
Michelle: "No, I thought you did."
Richard: "I did not do it. Do we tell Susie?"
Michelle: "Yes, let's tell her."
Michelle is able to influence Richard to take ownership. The result? A more honest, accountable team.
With time, your actions will influence others to be GOOD apples.
As hard as it may seem, by taking small steps to build relationships and role model authenticity, you are working to be YOURSELF at work.
Take a few minutes to look in the mirror. Before you start work, ask yourself:
Who do you want to be today?
What does it mean to be yourself at work?