If you are fortunate enough to have close allies at your place of employment than you’re career is most likely moving forward towards your goal. We need our colleagues at times to “have our back.”
Who’s got your back?
In any work environment or venture, there is the job and then there is the dance. Being able to successfully accomplish a job is important but it pales in comparison to excelling at doing the dance. And what is the dance?
The dance is the political “know how” in which we orchestrate the players in our world to achieve our desired results.
It’s knowing how to play politics within our own world.
It’s about having colleagues that you can utilize as allies for each other. I emphasize “each other” because politics is gamesmanship that we play with others.
To succeed at almost any endeavor, most successful people understand this principle: that sometimes we need others who “have our back”. It’s not about friendship necessarily, it’s about having allies.
Who’s got your back?
Here are 5 characteristics of someone who’s got your back:
1. Trustfulness- someone that you can confide in and know for certain that things said remain private. In addition, you must return the favor. It should never only be a one sided relationship.
2. Similar Goals – an ally should innately understand you and your actions with similar goals. This is not necessarily a rivalry. This is about sharing the common good of a desired outcome.
3. Confidence- surrounding ourselves with confidant people enables us to feel confident in ourselves and in so doing, we can reciprocate when others need us.
4. Stability – if someone has your back, shouldn’t they be stable in both their business decisions and their personal affairs? Of course.
5. Compassion- compassionate people tend to understand the plight of others and more often are able to offer themselves when needed.
In summary, we all need someone who we can trust that “has our back.” There are of course many characteristics to a trusted ally. But the very first step is just knowing that there is a dance that accompanies the work or venture we pursue. Sometimes we have to dance alone. And once in a while we need someone in our corner, someone who has our best interests at heart. Someone to share the dance.
But reciprocity rules. You have to offer trust first, before you can receive it.
Hey, who’s got your back?