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“It’s the most wonderful time of the year….” according to the seasonal song, but sometimes it isn’t. We can get so busy buying gifts, cooking elaborate meals, and decorating our houses, that we lose focus on the people. During the holidays this year, we invite you to spend some time nurturing your relationships, both personally and professionally. Here at InspireHUB our working relationships are based on making good friends with coworkers and clients. When we make time for each other and focus on the other person we found that we can create an engaging environment and at least four relationship opportunities.

 

It’s an opportunity to create personal understanding. The tool we use at InspireHUB to make sure it’s not about “us” and all about “you” is our 8 Perceptual Determinants. The 8 Perceptual Determinants are: fears, attitude/bias, beliefs, values, interests, experience, worldview, state of health. Everyone’s behaviors are driven by these 8 Perceptual Determinants. By using these principles to understand your relationships you will learn more about friends, family, clients, donors, and volunteers. In turn, that helps you build a better understanding of their values, interests, and fears. For example, if conflict arises, ask yourself what might they be afraid of, or what previous holiday experience might be influencing their current actions.

Engagement Tip: Focusing on the other person helps you to understand them better and what is influencing their behaviors.

 

It’s an opportunity to make good friends of your relationships. Are you one of those people who REALLY wants to enjoy time with your family and volunteers at the holidays, but every year you walk away disappointed by the experience? Maybe you struggle for something to talk about because you only really see each other once a year or at grand social events? If this is you, then ask yourself how you might connect more frequently and at a deeper level.  

Engagement Tip:  Make a list of those people who constantly engage with your organization on social media, via email, or who frequently attend events, and then schedule an “ENGAGE REMINDER” in your calendar for that person at regular intervals throughout the year. When things are hectic you can lose track of time but with this great reminder you won’t lose track of that person. And next year, you won’t be spending time with relative strangers, but good friends.

 

It’s an opportunity to make time together personally relevant. One way to make the holidays personally relevant this year is to make time together about others, not you. Ask questions. Show interest. Invest time. Most importantly, listen with an open heart; you may be surprised by what you hear. Using these principles will help you learn more about others and build a better understanding of their fears, values, and interests. Truly understanding another person will help you foster good friendships.

Engagement Tip: Really want to create a personally relevant moment? Offer your assistance to the host/hostess in the kitchen, if you know that would be meaningful to them. Chances are they have been working for hours before you arrived and face a mountain of dishes when you leave. Some of my best moments, and conversations, with family are spent over the sink before and after the meal. At a professional event, act as host or hostess to a guest who isn’t socializing or who doesn’t know many people. It will make the event more pleasant, you will have made a new friend and making it about them and not you creates personal relevance.

 

It’s an opportunity to build a better future together. Imagine if everyone focused on nurturing relationships and making good friends, not just during the holidays, but every day. It is possible to make time for others, increase personal relevance and solidify relationships on an ongoing basis. At InspireHUB, we support your desire to really engage with your friends, co-workers, donors, volunteers, and clients; and we really want to engage with you. Remember, it isn’t about us, but you, and we look forward to getting to know you better.

Engagement Tip: Identify one relationship goal for the holidays and create a behavior action plan that you can monitor. For instance, you may want to focus on getting to know one person better by asking questions that increase your understanding of their 8 Perceptual Determinants. Questions like: “What is one thing I could do for you this holiday that would make it a memorable experience?” or “I spent a lot of time learning to cook this year. What is your favorite meal?”

 

Remember, making good friend is fun!

 

Happy Holidays!



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