It takes 50 hours for an acquaintance to become a friend. How will you carve out that time?
As summer comes to a close, perhaps you are preparing new goals for the rest of the year.
Meeting new people and building relationships may be one of these goals.
According to Uzzi and Dunlap, we tend to build our relationships with people who are like us, in close proximity or with whom we share activities or intense experiences.
A recent study suggested that it takes about 50 hours of socializing to go from acquaintance to casual friend, an additional 40 hours to become a “real” friend, and a total of 200 hours to become a close friend.
This sounds like not so much time – a week or a month of work. But when you consider that as adults, most of us already have jobs, families and other activities, finding time to build new relationships is a challenge.
Consider the math. If you belong to a professional networking group and want to get to know people better, you need to put in 50 hours with a few of the members. This equates to attending 25 2-hour events, joining a committee or participating in longer group activities. You need to find a very active group to achieve this within a year.
If you want to deepen your relationships with friends, you need to spend an additional 40 hours together, including more intense experiences. This could involve a long weekend away (2 days x 16 hours together = 32 hours) or monthly dinner or activity events (12 x 4 hours = 48 hours) to strengthen the relationship.
Finally, if you want to achieve the 200 hours to build close friends, you really need to make a commitment to spending time together, potentially through a range of activities. Something like coffee once a week (52 x 1 hours = 52 hours), dinner or a cultural activity once a month (12 x 4 hours = 48 hours), a day of walking, skiing or cycling once a month (12 x 8 hours = 96 hours). This combination would just get you to the 200 hours over the course of a year.
The above shows that building relationships takes time and effort, especially within an already busy schedule. If you have the goal to develop new friendships or deepen your relationships during the remaining months of 2018, how will you dedicate the time to do this? What activities will you plan to achieve your goal?
Now is the time to proactively plan your activities, so that come the end of the year, you will feel that you have made progress toward one or more closer relationships.
Questions for consideration
1. What are your goals for building relationships for the rest of 2018?
2. What groups can you join and what activities will you participate in to dedicate the required number of hours to achieve your goals?
3. How will you carve out the time?
Click here to subscribe to our newsletter to receive these articles via email.