Tina Lewis Rowe

Insights, Information & Inspiration

Colleagues, Co-Workers Or Fellow Inmates?

Who is most like you and least like you at work?  

Think about the people who work with you directly or indirectly and do a bit of an analysis. Don’t take the time to worry about the why of your responses, just put faces and names to these questions.

  1. Who do you most look forward to seeing when you come back from time away? 
  2. Who do you most dread seeing?
  3. Who works about the same way you do? (Time management, communication style, attitude, skill level, etc.) Is that helpful to you or not?
  4. Who works in an almost completely different way than you do? Is that a problem or not?
  5. If you were given an office to share with someone, who would you choose?
  6. Who has helped you the most in the last six months?
  7. Who has purposely or inadvertently hindered you from getting your work done effectively? 
  8. Who have you complained, griped or grumbled the most about while at work?  
  9. Who do you think of as a strong ally?  
  10. Who is the person with whom you can share thoughts when you want to discuss improving work or being more effective?  
  11. Who is an unknown quantity to you?
  12. Who do you think understands you and your motivations and concerns the best?

Answering those questions may only reinforce what you already know about who you like and who you don’t. Or, the answers may encourage you to reach out more, build a bridge or repair one and say thank you to the person or people who have supported you over time.

Look around at work and you’ll realize that most are co-workers, although not particularly close ones. A few seem like inmates in a particularly bizarre asylum. A very few are colleagues who will watch your back and make your time at work better.  Have you said thanks to those (or that one) lately?

January 13th, 2011 Posted by | Keeping On!, Life and Work, Personal and Professional Development | 7 comments


  1. I think the kid on the right is too sunburned to jump. That would probably be me! Hope you’re doing well.

    Comment by Drew Hammann | January 14, 2011

  2. Very interesting. I was surprised at my own answers. As an old, beat up cop, I don’t usually think about this kind of stuff, but it was a good exercise for me. I realized my friends are mostly away from work. I think I’m the kid with the sunburn, just standing there looking at the waves.

    Comment by KB | January 14, 2011

  3. Someone at work and I talked about this over lunch and it was a great thing for us because we sort of shook hands over being allies for each other. It was fun! D.

    Comment by denisek | January 14, 2011

  4. Hello Ms. Tina. When we served on the DPD together you and I didn’t have very much in common but you were always the one I went to see when I needed advice about anything serious. Like what I should do when D/C Dunkley was mad at me. Can you guess who this is?

    Comment by Old Timer | January 14, 2011

  5. Must be an expensive camera. It picks up the water stream from the little girl’s feet. The main question I answered was who is an ally. I realized there aren’t more than two or three people who I think I could trust completely. But, at least I have those.

    Comment by Mike | January 14, 2011

  6. I didn’t think much about this until I started answering the questions. Then I realized it said a lot about the way I feel at work. I gave it to someone I work with and he had some of the same answers I did but some were really different. He listed someone as a strong ally who I don’t see that way for him at all. But, he thought I was way off on some answers too. It was actually kind of funny to see how we thought of different people. Good quiz.

    Comment by E.S. | January 18, 2011

  7. I already commented on one post but wanted to put a comment on this one. I loved the questions and a colleague and I are going to answer them tomorrow over lunch. I know I said it once already, but I love your blog! It’s so interesting and has a lot of fun things and serious things too. I like it so much better than most of the blogs that are one or the other. Too much!! Thanks again! A.

    Comment by A.P. | February 10, 2011

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