I’m often asked what exactly it is that I do after telling people I work in consultant relations for a talent acquisition company. I’m passionate about connecting and communicating with people, and as the Consultant Relations Specialist at Latitude 36, I build and maintain relationships with our excellent consultants. I always expand on this by simply saying “I make sure people are happy.”
A part of my role at this company is to ensure that no one feels left behind, or like they don’t have someone to communicate with. It can be a simple conversation, or something more demanding, but the bottom line is that my job exists to make sure you have someone you can reach out to and trust. People perform their best when they feel happy and secure in their jobs.
Issues in our jobs that negatively impact us are sometimes pushed below the surface in order to get the job done. Work will always present certain challenges, but it’s important to address them for many reasons. Communicating issues when they arise is especially important when you’re a contractor. The position has an end date, and we often get blinded by that light at the end of the tunnel- the promise that the work is not forever. Consider this, though- without ever giving someone the opportunity to make a change that could positively impact your work or environment, you will never know the capabilities of the company you are with.
Many people are afraid of communicating when it’s an uneasy subject. Fears of conflict and rejection are natural to have when approaching a superior to voice concerns, but have you ever thought about what this may look like from their end? Many times, supervisors are unaware of the issues you may be seeing, especially so in situations where there is a conflict within the team. Managers tend to stay in an “on” mode, meaning they are focused on the project and your individual/team performance. There are many things occupying their focus, therefore things can slide by them because they simply aren’t looking directly at that issue.
Write out what is bothering you, and keep track of the instances. Look at the facts, and then ask yourself if there is anything you can do to make it better. Is there room for growth on your part? If so, make the necessary change, and see if that impacts the problem. If things continue to not work, ask to meet with your supervisor, bringing your documentation along. The easiest way to communicate a problem is to relax and initiate a conversation. Be direct and firm, but also remain gentle in your approach. When you approach people on the defensive, their guard will come up, and in turn, they will be on the defensive as well. The goal is to make this a conversation, and give them the opportunity to help. When explaining your concerns, offer a solution! It’s an excellent time to display your problem solving skills, and come out on top.
By having a conversation complete with facts and examples, coupled with a desire to find a resolution, you will get to see your supervisors in a different light. They should respect your opinion, and offer some sort of insight or solution.
Take the time to craft your communication skills! It can only help the future of your career!
-Tyler Rider, Consultant Relations Specialist