Most people would say like they speak with anyone else. Same as if they would speak to their clients, friends, or family. There’s no difference. With respect and kindness.

I remember a work colleague who was incredibly friendly with her clients. Yet she wasn’t nice to those working for her. There was a lot of staff turnover in her team and the atmosphere was often tense.

I was discussing this topic with a client. We talked about how when things go well, we often take it for granted. When things don’t, we point out mistakes to our colleagues.

We talked about how it would feel if we spoke to our colleagues like we did with our kids. (1) Reinforcing good behavior goes a long way with kids. With praise and encouragement. Pointing out all the good things that they were doing. Rather than only highlighting mistakes and weaknesses. It would make for a more positive and encouraging environment.

For those familiar with the 5 love languages (2), it’s using words of appreciation and that can be done in a workplace too. Kind, positive words are not only used in the home but can be used with anyone you come in contact with.

If you would like to have more positive interactions at work, first look at how you speak to others.

The Golden Rule is the principle of treating others as you want to be treated.


1) How to talk so kids will listen and listen so kids will talk book

2) 5 Love languages blog post