Do You Have to Get Along with Everyone at Work?

August 20, 2019

Career Advice

When the late film director Garry Marshall (of Happy Days and Pretty Woman fame) was asked what the best career advice he’d ever received was, he said this: “Learn to work with people you wouldn’t go to lunch with.” Ouch. Right? But boy is there truth in his statement! One of the most difficult transitions for new college graduates can be learning how to work alongside people who are nothing like them–in age, geography, experience, and interests–just to name a few differences.

But learning how to work with everyone–even the people you “wouldn’t go to lunch with”–is an incredible life skill that’s imperative in the work place. People have very different communication styles, and the sooner you can recognize this and be respectful and aware of these differences, the more you can excel in your career. Take a personality quiz like Myer-Briggs Type Indicator, which helps you identify your tendencies in categories like “Intuition vs. Sensing” and “Judging vs. Perceiving.” Keep these results in mind as you meet and work with new people, and see if you can identify how they may have scored on such a test.

Practice striking up a conversation with strangers. Small talk can help strengthen a relationship with a new coworker fairly quickly and painlessly–even with someone whom you seemingly have nothing in common. In fact, after a brief conversation you may find that, hey, they are someone you’d like to go to go to lunch with. It all comes down to respect. Show interest in other people–their opinions, their stories, their thoughts, and their feelings–and a healthy work relationship will follow.

Image via Rob/Flickr.

About Spectrum Brands Careers

Spectrum Brands is a global $5 Billion Consumer Products company headquartered in Middleton, Wisconsin. While you may not be familiar with the Spectrum Brands name, there is no doubt you will recognize some of our brands.

View all posts by Spectrum Brands Careers


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