I love to get work done. I find I am most productive when I can spend focused time on one task and dig in.

I enjoy seeing things get done, knowing progress is being made and that meaningful work is happening.

So when I get interrupted, I can get annoyed. When you are really being productive you don’t want to stop, that would seem like a waste of momentum! What I have had to learn is that these interactions can be opportunities, not just interruptions.

Image courtesy of scottchan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of scottchan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

How can we be more intentional with the people we work with?

1. Take lunch away from work

Everyone has to eat, why not eat with your team.

Lunch may be the easiest way to get out of the office with someone you work with. It gives you and them a chance to get out of the office during the work day and interact with them in a less formal environment.

2. No work talk outside of work

Spending time outside of work is important. Let the work of the day stay at work. If you don’t then people will start to view social times with you as just another day in the office.

You might be surprised when you hear of the interests and talents those on your team have. That information might not come out during work hours. Take some time to get to know that part of them and allow them to get to know that part of you.

3. Walk around

If you stay in your office all day or never make a site visit, people will feel very distant from you. It is hard to expect what you don’t inspect, so take some time each day to walk around and see how the team is doing.

What I have had to learn is that interactions with people are opportunities not interruptions. Tweet this!

It’s not about being a people person or not. It is about seeing the value of working with others and showing an interest beyond the need to produce.

We should not be hesitant to interact with others. Taking the time to invest in others or simply spending time for the sake of building a relationship will always be beneficial.

I once heard Dave Ramsey on his radio show say that we will be the same people we are today in 10 years from now except for the people we meet and the books we read.

It’s a good thing to spend time reading and studying. It is also a very good thing to invest our lives into others.

What advice would you give to someone trying to figure out the balance between people work and paper work?