Building relationships is all that matters...10 effective strategies

1 - Listen to what others are saying...
Being able to speak is important...being able to listen is more important. If you can truly listen to what others are saying, you will
be able to establish an unlimited amount of strong and long lasting
relationships. Your ability or inability to listen, will most
definitely affect the success, and the number of relationships you will
have in life.

2 - Watch what others are doing...
We have all heard "actions speak louder than words," and when
establishing relationships with others it is crucial we are aware of
what others are doing. If you find yourself in a relationship and you
have no idea where it is headed, it is time to take a step back and
visually observe the direction in which it is headed. Your eyes can
provide you a great insight into the strength and longevity of your

3 - Embrace the opinions and beliefs of others...
This strategy can be extremely difficult at times, however the
importance of embracing the opinions and beliefs of others can be the
determining factor of whether a relationship survives or not. You might
not always agree with somebody with whom you have a relationship, but
you should respect their beliefs and opinions, and unequivocally expect
the same in return. A relationship where differences in beliefs and
opinions are not allowed to have a negative effect on the overall
relationship has the ability to be strong and enduring.

4 - Put yourself in their shoes...
Before passing judgment or placing blame, please put yourself in the
shoes of another. If you can utilize this strategy to understand
something before reaching a conclusion, you will be much more likely to
be accurate in your assumptions, as well as avoid potential irreversible
damages to your relationships. Your compassion and understanding will
always trump assumptions and judgments...even if they prove to be

5 - Share the successes and failures of others...
Relationships are all about teams and groups and working together. As
such, you should share in the successes and failures of your
relationships. When you celebrate and console the people in your
relationships, you gain a deeper appreciation and understanding into
what makes your relationships tick. Relationships will also inherently
grow stronger with every success and failure; if and only if you
shoulder the successes and failures together.

6 - By giving you gain...
Every time you give in a relationship you are strengthening your bond.
Once a relationship has been established, it must continue to grow, or
it will eventually dissolve. One of the best ways to continue to grow a to give. The more you give and sacrifice in a
relationship, the more you will ultimately get in return. The beauty of
having strong and stable relationships is that when you give and
sacrifice, you are really not sacrificing because the value of the
relationship greatly out weights any amount of sacrifice.

7 - Respect the desires and needs of others...
One of the most important pieces to any strong relationship is your
ability to add and bring value to the relationship. In order for you to
be able to add and bring value, you need to acknowledge and respect the
goals and desires of others. Once you become a contributing piece to
the goals and needs of others, your relationships will only be stronger
and more plentiful.

8 - Be positive, optimistic, and give others the benefit of the doubt...
I believe human nature is to be positive and optimistic. As such, it is
only fitting that we give others the benefit of the doubt. You should
trust the people with whom you work, live and coexist. If as humans, we
are unable to be positive and optimistic toward the people with whom we
surround ourselves, then we have very little chance of establishing
strong and beneficial relationships. Your optimism and trust will
undoubtedly be returned to you when you least expect it, and when you
most need it...

9 - No matter thankful and praise the helping hand of others...
There is nothing more powerful than a simple "thank you," or "I really
appreciate your help." More times than we realize, we are using and
asking for the help of others. No matter how small or how trivial the
help or advice may be, it is crucial that you express your gratitude and
thankfulness for the help of others. Think how good it felt the last
time somebody thanked you or recognized you for your help...try to
replicate this feeling for others as much as possible.

10 - Remember...the most important relationship is with yourself...
Lastly, many people view a relationship as a one sided entity. As with
many things in life, there are fortunately two sides to every
relationship. For you to have the best, strongest, and longest lasting
relationships, you must recognize your own impact on the overall
relationship. If you have not established a strong working relationship
with yourself, then it is going to be extremely difficult to connect
with others in a productive and useful way. You must build a strong and
solid foundation with yourself before you can get the most out your

I hope this list is helpful as you continue to establish and build
relationships. "Winning with People," by John Maxwell, is a book we
read last year in book club. This is a fabulous book about
relationships and how to effectively manage the many intricacies of
relationships. If you have any additional strategies to help others to
establish and build relationships please leave a comment. Thank you.

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Tags: and, development, education, educational, growth, interconnectedness, learning, professional, purpose, sharing, More…teacher, theory

Comment by Mitch Ward on September 12, 2010 at 1:45pm
I frequently observe teachers when they are using technology. Many times I have begun a conversation by complementing a great lesson. “Really?” is the reply I hear most often. When I tell specifically why it was a great lesson the teacher often responds with surprised concurrence. Positive formative assessment is powerful and underutilized. It is a strong motivator for both teachers and students. Reading your 10 effective strategies brought this to mind.


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