The Science of Turning Acquaintances Into Hires – Part 2

by | Dec 2, 2020

Yesterday, we discussed the importance of self-disclosure for moving relationships past the acquaintance stage.

The middle ground between a positive connection and a hiring commitment is, in essence, a business friendship.

According to researchers, business friendships follow a predictable pattern:

Workplace friendships experienced three primary transitions: from acquaintance‐to‐friend, friend‐to‐close friend, and close friend‐to‐almost best friend.

The acquaintance-to-friend transition is caused primarily by working together in close proximity, sharing common ground, and extra‐organizational socializing.

There is nothing too surprising here. Most real estate hiring managers are trying to accomplish these tasks, and some do it quite successfully.

The problem? They stop at this stage and never reap the reward of going just a little bit further.

What’s the “bit further” secret sauce?

Solving problems together.

The friend-to-close friend transition was associated primarily with solving problems in one’s personal and work experiences. Communication at this transition became broader, more intimate, and less cautious.

This subtle change could be easily overlooked, but it demonstrates the connection between problem-solving and increasing the depth of a workplace relationship.

Increasing the depth of the relationship makes hiring seem like the natural next step.


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