10 Ways Nice People Can Get Ahead
Do nice guys really finish last? No, not always.
In fact, there are plenty of ways that the nice, ethical, and well-mannered folks can get ahead and live far more productive and achievement filled lives than their mean-spirited counterparts.
If friendly conversation, relationship building, and reaching out to people you don't know comes naturally to you, then you've got some major advantages when it comes to the professional and business world. Those worlds just so happen to have a lot to say about whether or not you're "getting ahead." (See also: 5 Ways Being Nice Can Pay Off at Work)
1. Nice People Can Build Networks and Inspire Trust Easily
Not only are you going to naturally connect and network with people, but those that you do (particularly the ones you meet face to face) will probably like you and have an immediate level of trust in you.
Even if that trust is just an emotional response, it's still a starting spot and it can be the difference between them answering a business-related email from you down the road, or completely ignoring it. (See also: Simple Networking Tricks)
2. Nice People Are the Kinds of People Who Get Hired
Most people looking to hire help will tell you that character and ability to fit in positively with a team is a major piece of the puzzle.
A company who hires you or does business with you can teach you how to perform certain tasks or understand certain systems, but not how to be a positive presence or how to get along with those you're working with.
If you bring a naturally friendly and positive attitude to the table, you're already a top candidate. (See also: 14 Strategies for Landing Jobs)
3. Nice People Enjoy What They Do
You can have a lot of skill and discipline, but if your attitude about life and the work you do is negative, it's going to show, and your progress in your field will be an uphill climb.
On the other hand, those who enjoy what they do and are passionate about their work will have a much easier time succeeding. Doing something you love is always going to be more profitable than dreading the thought of having to get up and go to work.
4. Nice People Are Nice to Themselves, Too
Working yourself into oblivion in the name of reaching your goals isn't smart. You need to take care of yourself both in a mental and physical capacity. Being a "nice person" and being friendly with other people starts with being able to take care of your own wellbeing.
5. Nice People Are Focused on Overall Quality of Life
Often, those who are looking to get ahead will neglect aspects of their life that don't directly correlate with reaching financial or other success objectives. This means that family and recreational leisure often take a backseat, which in the long run can be damaging to you and your overall life goals.
Keeping your priorities straight and tending to all areas of your life will make you happier, and nicer, and will help keep you going when it's time to work hard.
6. Nice People Take Failure in Stride
Failure is an incredible tool, and those who are able to stay positive about it and learn from it will be better off as a result.
It's all part of the journey. (See also: How to Embrace Failure and Win)
7. Nice People Are Influential
Have you ever spent time around someone who's just really positive about everything?
That positive demeanor is infectious. It starts to make others want to be more positive. This gives nice people a degree of influence that others don't have.
So even if you think something is stupid or dumb, it might not hurt to find some good in it and focus on that.
8. Nice People Command Attention
It's easier to listen to a positive, friendly person than it is someone who's noticeably irritated or negative all the time. A friendly person will have an easier time expressing their opinion while at the same time getting people to hear them out and take them seriously.
9. Nice People Are Genuinely Nice
There are two different kinds of "nice."
One is the kind that makes you feel like someone is trying to sell you something, like the way a vacuum cleaner salesman is nice, or a campaign worker who knocks on your door is nice.
In short, you can tell they're just putting on an act.
The other kind is a genuine friendliness that's getting to be a bit rare these days. If you're the person that can exude that genuine friendliness, people will be far more likely to trust you.
In short, being nice while expecting nothing in return means your friendly actions count for more.
10. Nice People Are Fun to be Around
It's no secret — the friendlier you are, the more people will want to spend time with you. It's the old rule of friendship that you've got to give in order to receive. Being a person that people want to spend time with is one of the most basic stepping stones when it comes to building a network and connecting with people of influence. (See also: Networking Mistakes You Should Avoid)
Playing to Your Strengths
If you consider yourself a nice person (and most of us do, because most of us are), then it's helpful to know how to play to your strengths. It's OK to want to get more out of life. You can want that for yourself and still be a nice person, so don't let anyone tell you otherwise.
Let's be honest — it wouldn't really be a nice thing for them to say.
Do you have other ways that nice people can get ahead? Let me know in the comments below.