Having and making friends at work is important for a successful career, but it can be hard to walk the line between being too personal and staying professional. Maintaining boundaries at work is critical. You need to be aware of your emotions, assess your personal limits, and allow yourself to create boundaries.
Don’t be afraid to set limits! Once boundaries are set you may not receive all positive reactions and that’s ok. Should negative reactions occur, it is important that you prepare for them and respond rationally.
Clearly communicate these limits to your co-workers. For example, politely let your co-worker know when you do and don’t respond to emails. By taking the time to communicate upfront, you are proactively preventing future miscommunication.
Don’t discuss issues that could make you or someone else feel uncomfortable, such as politics, race, and religion. It is important to keep conversations work related.
Don’t engage in office gossip. If a problem arises, talk directly to the co-worker involved as soon as possible. Waiting or talking about them to someone else can cause additional problems.
Remember that your work friend may become your boss, or vice versa. Without boundaries, this could cause difficulties should you become too friendly.
Above all, treat those around you with respect and trust, and your business relationships will positively contribute to your success in the workplace.