By performing this private “survey” of others, you can set yourself up for success in managing the expectations of others. Think of this as a way to “scout” the unknown before you make your move to improve your circumstances.
By understanding an individual’s social status, thought process, and how you can relate to them, you will be able to approach them effectively as a colleague. Try to write down several ideas beforehand about how you can best “bridge” the gap between you. Be sure to include positive messaging, and even potential compliments to help the conversation along.
Remember, your goal isn’t to be awkward or dishonest. You want to be as open and natural as possible. The preparation is useful to help tip the odds in your favour for a successful outcome.
Moreover, once you have the individual conversing with you, be sure to ask questions about what they do! People love demonstrating their knowledge or skills to others. If possible, try to ask about your work environment or the people in it. This will help you gain insights about the current climate around you.
Should you find a subject being broached is making your uncomfortable, or you don’t wish to share any details on the subject, simply declare that you aren’t sure how to respond. In this instance, people will often give you an “out” that will serve as a humorous or easy way to change the subject.
If you have any inclination or tendency to lie – don’t! Lying or putting up a façade is impossible to maintain. You should strive to be more honest wherever possible.
It is far better to fail when approaching others socially than it is to outright lie to their face. Not only from a moral standpoint, but also because it could cost you later!