8 professional ways to make friends at work

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When you're a kid, making friends is one of the easiest things to do. Approach someone who has about the same height and say "Hey, do you want to be the best friend?" and congratulate yourself on another buddy in the bag. Try this line as an adult and the reactions range from a weird look to a quick call to 911. It can be hard to make new friends, and most of the time, the people we meet at work are our best asset. However, as you are in a professional environment and need to see these people every day, you want to maintain a respectful distance, at least initially, until you know them well enough.

Here are some ideas on how to make friends in the office without hindering.

1. Look for like-minded people

Finding a common passion is one of the fastest ways to find a new friend. Whether you like baseball, comics or camping, when you start out enjoying a certain hobby, you have a good foundation to build. But how do you identify colleagues who have the same interests? Well, you can start by enjoying the cuisine (if you have one). Hang out there while you drink your coffee, participate in the conversations that take place and just make your leisure time. You can also leave flyers, especially if you start something like a softball team or a book club. (See also: 11 ways freelancers and telecommuters can make friends and network.)

2. Attend all work events

Some work events will be sponsored by the company; others will be arranged by colleagues who want to go out after work. If you avoid these opportunities for more relaxed socialization with your colleagues, you are missing the opportunity to create real contact. So, attend the company picnic, the pot-lucks, the team outing at a local chopper club and, of course, at happy hour. Most of the company's employees enjoy relaxing after work with some adult drinks, chewing fat and relaxing after the rigors of the day. Join to.

And if you are sober and the driver designated, the bar staff will offer free sodas and energy drinks all night long to support you. (See also: 6 ways to split the bill without losing friends)

3. Have lunch in a group, not at your desk

Allow at least a few meals a week for lunch with people you like. If you can afford it, going to the local restaurant for lunch is another fun way to make friends. Plus, since you're not in the office, it can be more relaxed.

4. Bring breakfast

Breakfast does not have to be an expensive gesture. A box of donuts costs about $ 10, and most people will love the thought and effort you put into it. You can also arrange a schedule so that a group of you alternates breakfast tasks throughout the month. Even if you are extremely busy, you still have time for a five-minute break from eating a donut and having a coffee.

5. Take advantage of social platforms

The most important social network for businesses is LinkedIn, and it is usually easy to find your colleagues and communicate with them on this site. You can leave messages or post thank you messages to team members who have done outstanding work during the week.

Once you are familiar with LinkedIn, the next step is to connect via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. It's one more step in your colleague's personal life, so do not rush this one. Some people like to draw a line between work and pleasure, even in this age of sharing everything online. And as always, continue as you please. It may be social, but if you start talking about a day of misery at work, do not expect your colleagues to support you. They know that these publications can be retrieved by management and many people have been fired because of missteps in social media. (See also: 7 simple ways to clean your image on social media)

6. Ask your colleagues for help

If you are new to the business, it's a great way to get closer to the people you consider potential friends. They know the ins and outs, and they will be more than happy to help the Green Employee. By asking for help for a project or task, you are showing a more vulnerable side and when the ego is small, great friendships can grow.

7. Exuded confidence

If you are shy and lack self-esteem, you will find it difficult to make meaningful friendships. Relax. Think of all your good qualities. What makes you feel good about your job? What makes you a great friend? Inflate yourself and this will really help you make connections.

8. Show your personality

If you have the opportunity, turn your workspace into advertising about your interests and hobbies. If you're the biggest Harry Potter fan in the world, celebrate Hogwarts with office toys. Love football? Drap the colors of the team. Can not wait to go to paintball? Put event posters and pictures of yourself in your gear. And if there is a similar mind at the office, they hear about your interests and are looking for you.

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8 professional ways to make friends at work