Calm down, we’re not suggesting anything that the HR department would frown upon. Subtle body language cues can open you up to more positive social interactions and, over time, more productive relationships with your coworkers.
Why do you want your coworkers to be your friends anyways? For starters, most employees spend more time at work than with their families. Secondly, you never know when you’ll need a great peer reference. Third, it’s great to have a colleague you can chat with who understands your industry and can mentor you in your future career decisions.
So where does your body come into play? Having a friendly, open, engaged demeanor will help you make a better impression, which will lead to friendships over time. When having a conversation, face your body directly towards your coworker when you speak. Keeping your arms uncrossed will make you appear more receptive and pleasant. When your coworker is speaking, listen intently, lean in and nod along with the conversation. Reinforcing your agreement or your attention by occasionally responding “uh-huh” and “I understand” can also be useful.
These subtle body language cues inspire subconscious positive impressions that will linger and help you make a friendly impression. Try it today!