Enhancing workplace relationships

Relationships affect all areas of our lives. Whether personal or professional, the quality of our relationships has an impact on our wellbeing.

When people develop their relational capability skills, they get better at helping themselves and others to cope with challenging times, both at home and at work.

Enhancing workplace relationships: supporting employees through relationship transition

The OLPAC approach to effective employee conversations

In today's fast-paced world, the quality of our personal and professional relationships significantly influences our overall wellbeing.

Building relational capability skills empowers people to navigate challenges at home and work effectively. Research shows that relationship happiness is strongly linked with engagement and productivity in the workplace.

A happy personal life motivates people to excel professionally. Employers can play a crucial role in supporting employees during challenging personal times, such as the transition to parenthood or a relationship breakdown. Our newly launched training programme is tailored to equip managers with the skills needed to handle delicate conversations, ensuring employees feel heard, supported, and empowered.

The evidence-based Relationship conversations training programme doesn't aim to turn managers into counsellors. Rather, it focuses on enabling them to identify signs that support is needed, approach discussions sensitively, and find solutions to help employees navigate challenges.

This training builds on OnePlusOne's established Brief Encounters® Skills Training (B.E.S.T.), enhancing confidence and understanding in handling difficult issues. It incorporates up-to-date research evidence to develop relational capability skills applicable in all aspects of life. Professionals who completed the B.E.S.T. training reported a 100% intention to use the acquired techniques for relationship-related conversations with employees or clients.

Tips for effective employee conversations: the OLPAC approach

  1. Open mind: Recognise that personal situations affect responses.
  2. Listening ear: Create a safe space for vulnerable conversations.
  3. Patient response: Allow time for circumstances to improve
  4. Accommodating nature: Be flexible with practical adjustments.
  5. Culture of support: Foster a culture where adaptation is encouraged.

You don't need to be an expert to offer support. Sometimes, asking how someone is doing can initiate a conversation. Pointing them to helpful resources is valuable too. The key is being prepared to assist when employees seek support.

Research underscores the link between personal relationship quality and work productivity. Employers should take interest in employees' lives outside work to appropriately address personal stressors affecting work. Approaching personal relationship discussions with employees can be challenging. OnePlusOne, a leading relationship research charity, provides advice to facilitate support during significant transitions like parenthood or separation.

The OLPAC approach guides these conversations:

Open mind - Listening ear - Patient response - Accommodating nature - Culture of support


Learn more about supporting your staff through OnePlusOne's Relationship conversations training, an evidence-based program empowering managers to address relationship-related issues adeptly without becoming counsellors. Boost your team's ability to manage challenges impacting their professional lives.