What does being a generous colleague mean to you?

In the workplace, it’s important to create a comfortable, friendly environment that fosters a sense of community. Being successful includes being able to work alongside others and form strong relationships that encourage productivity. 

Giving back at work doesn’t necessarily mean giving others resources or money. It’s more about giving what you have to help others succeed and do so without expecting anything in return. 

If you want to practice giving more to those you work with, here are five ways to get started.

Give Your Time

You may be a busy businessperson, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make time for those you work with. It’s easier to position yourself as a professional when you make the effort to show up for your colleagues and respect their time.

You can practice generosity by being present and aware during your interactions with people. When they need you, you’re there for them to provide help in any way you can. If employees need help with a task, such as creating a contact form, you’re there promptly to assist.

Giving your time to your team shows them that they’re a priority and further positions you as a leader who takes their role seriously. For newer employees especially, they need guidance to streamline their processes and work efficiently. Make sure you prioritize each person so they feel seen and appreciated. 

Give Your Ear

Unfortunately, some people listen to respond rather than to understand, and this is no trait for the workplace. It’s common for issues to arise in a professional environment, but refusing to listen to others leads to miscommunication and misunderstanding.

Listening intently to your colleagues gives them a sense of visibility that they’ll remember you for. For bigger companies especially, it’s easy to get lost among all the employees. When you take the time to listen to someone and really hear what they say, it leaves a lasting positive impression.

Give Opportunities

If you’re in a position to grant people opportunities, then it’s your responsibility to move them forward. People don’t continue working for companies where they don’t have room to grow and excel. If you keep your team at the same level for a prolonged period, they’ll start to look elsewhere.

At work, it’s important for employees to feel like they’re doing a job that’s worthwhile. If it doesn’t benefit them or make them money, then they’ll feel stuck. People need to continuously expand their knowledge and hone their skills to succeed in their field.

Be generous in giving promotions, raises, bonuses, referrals, and recognition where they’re due. If someone consistently works hard to bring you more business and increase revenue, then you owe them for their effort. 

Give Encouragement

Sometimes, work feels like too much or a project doesn’t turn out the way you had hoped. These things are normal and they happen often. What’s important is that your colleagues don’t let the tough days get them down and prevent them from producing stellar work.

To be a generous peer, you need to offer your encouragement wherever it’s needed. In a recent survey, 79 percent of employees said that recognition in the workplace boosts their productivity and encourages them to work harder. 

When people feel appreciated for their efforts, they’re likelier to produce the same results and do so happily. Encourage your teammates to do their best and bring them up when they’re down. 

Give Your Skills

You likely have skillsets that those around you would love to learn about themselves. It’s always good to learn something new to inspire creativity and keep your mind fresh. If you avoid switching up your routine, you’ll quickly feel bored and burned out.

Give your colleagues a chance to flourish at a new skill or brush up on one by offering your expertise. Be open to receiving and answering questions. Offer to teach courses or create a membership service that people can join to form a sense of community. Use meeting times to encourage feedback on how you can better serve and educate your team so they can succeed on their own.

Your Turn

People in the workplace need to practice giving to each other so everyone has the chance to succeed. Generosity breeds productivity, motivation, and a friendly environment. If everyone practices giving selflessly, then work becomes a good place to be. How will you foster generosity at your work?