The Energizer

Resilient Insights for Work & Life

3 Tips for Creating Resilient Work Relationships—and it’s NOT Money

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer - Monday, February 04, 2019
Featured Image

Let me first define what a resilient work relationship looks like. It is not someone who stays in the organization forever. The truth of the matter is people can “stay” but their minds and spirits are gone. Their bodies are present, but they are absentee landlords!

Resilient work relationships are formed between individuals who GROW through challenging times as well as opportunity. Resilient work relationships last even if someone moves into a different division or even moves out of the organization. Resilient work relationships mean that both parties speak well of each other, cheer each other on, and reflect on the time within the organization as powerful and meaningful.

I know. You’re asking: “If it is powerful and meaningful, why would someone leave?"

Life changes. Interests change. And new opportunities can present themselves. My best employees were those who gave me 125% of their effort because they knew I had their best interests at heart—even if that meant assisting them to move in other directions. And resilient work relationships also create space for an employee to return!

Tip #1: TALK! Resilient work relationships are developed one conversation at a time. Conversation is not accomplished thru text or email but rather face-to-face even its video through Zoom, Skype or Facetime. The conversation has focus. It’s not about solving the current problem or a touch-base check up on a project. Rather, this conversation is a check INTO how the employee is faring. Think head, heart and hand. Ask what the employee is thinking about her current role, the work load, and the organization. Ask, how she feels about these things and what makes her heart heavy or light? Lastly, ask what she would like to do, learn, or experience to help with personal growth.

Tip# 2: LISTEN! There’s an Irish saying: “The good Lord gave us two ears and a mouth implying that we are to listen twice as much as we speak.” Sadly, that is often not the case. Relationships flourish and grow when each person feels heard. The body language says, “you have my full attention”. The questions or statements a manager makes reflect a desire to understand more deeply. The manager is listening for cues that can take the conversation in a deeper direction, a different direction. As Beverly Kaye and Julie Winkle Giulioni state in their revised book, Help Them Grow or Watch Them Go, “cue sensitivity is curiosity in action.”

Tip #3: CHECK UP & CHECK IN! Absence does NOT make the heart grow fonder. I’m not talking here about micro-managing or hanging over someone’s shoulder. Rather, every relationship has a certain comfort level with how often one likes to be contacted, to be asked about how she is faring, and what help might the manager offer. A simple check-in says, “I care”. And when everyone is faced with competing demands, time pressures, and increased expectations—a simple touch base says, “You matter”.

Resilient work relationships can span the course of time, even if the environment shifts.

Share This Post

Like this post? Please share it!

< Back to All Posts


Eileen McDargh Keynote Speaker Blog Author

About Eileen!

Since beginning her consulting and training practice in 1980, Eileen has become noted for her ability to speak the truth with clarity, wisdom, humor and compassion. Long-standing clients and repeat engagements attest to her commitment to make a difference in minds, hearts and spirits of organizations and individuals. She draws upon practical business know-how, life's experiences and years of consulting to major national and international organizations that have ranged from global pharmaceuticals to the US Armed Forces, from health care associations to religious institutions. Executive Excellence magazine selected her as one of the top 100 thought leaders in leadership and among the top ten consultant providers of leadership development.

View all posts by Eileen

Subscribe to My Blog!

Like My Blog?

Please share it!

Recents Posts




Play Adaptability Leaders Open Doors Book resiliency Exercise Empathy Career Advice Road Trip Twas The Night Before Christmas Animals Branding Sheryl Sandberg Children Interview Adam Grant Loneliness Mark Scharenbroich Persuasion employee retention Fear Siblings Patriots Back To School Christmas Office Celebrations Family Energizing Others Honoring Veterans Technology Trust Listening Joy Managers Bullying Burnout Content Generation Human Interaction gratitude Henry VIII Learned Optimism Disrupt Building Resilience Anxiety More Fun at Work Emotional Intelligence Relationships Faith Travel Leadership Skills Motivating Others WASP Loss Alzheimer's Book Reviews Environtment customer service ecology Multi-tasking Vegan Kindness waiting teams love Climate Change Positive Brain Repatterning Divorce resilient organizations Meetings Writing Engaged Workers Breathe Ownership Boston Marathon Volunteer St. Patrick's Day Adventure Napping Requisite Variety Intentions Yoga Corporate Culture e-mail Radical Resiliency earthquakes Words Resolutions Your Resiliency GPS Networking Vacation coaching Bill Treasurer Politics Ecotourism preresilience Optimism John Mattone Guns resilient leaders Hurricane Harvey Fun Work Environment Idea Marriage Conversation Time Management Survive Feedback work life balance Energy Strangers cancer conscience Depression Dogs Humanity Spirit Sales Connection Sustainability Charity U.S.A.A. Employee Attitude John Havlik Seder Eve Talk Ain't Cheap Book Superbowl Deloitte Art USAA Mother's Day angels Tornadoes in Texas Voting Laughter Suddenly Single John Blumberg Women civil discourse resilience Soft Skills Energizing holidays Disruption Option B Social Media Speaking Postive Work Environment goals Married The Last Jedi Nursing Thanksgiving Gifts From The Mountain Aging Communication Happiness LGBTQ Breath New Year resolutions Arlington Cemetary Diversity creativity Compassion Hurricane Irma Jewish Walk For Hunger Sexual Harassment Memorial Day Spelling Bee Change Reshaping the Brain employees Stress Humor Sleeping women in leadership