2009 13 Oct
Little things can go along way.

Little things can go along way.

Popular people do better at work. They are more fun to have around, generate a positive atmosphere and improve morale. And as a manager being asked for a pay rise, wouldn’t you be more sympathetic towards someone you liked? So if you’re less popular than you could be, take a look through this list of likeable characteristics and see where there’s room for improvement.

• Be a good listener.
• Show an interest in the people around you.
• Don’t be arrogant or pompous.
• Don’t gossip about people behind their backs.
• Never put people down.
• A strong sense of humor is a definite plus, but don’t use it against the people you work with.
• If you manage your own team, be fair and always make time when your team members need to talk to you.

None of this is difficult, but most of us know deep down that we don’t really listen properly, or that when we disagree with someone’s idea we sometimes put them down (‘That’s a stupid idea!’ rather than ‘I disagree’).

Trust and Reliability
You are bound to succeed better if you are regarded as being trustworthy and reliable. So make sure you never break confidences or act disloyally, for example by gossiping about colleagues to customers or suppliers. Equally, always show you can be trusted to get tasks done, especially when they are urgent or important. Show that even when delays have put you behind, you can still get the work done without mistakes. That means that when there’s a sense of panic, your boss will decide to put you in charge of vital projects – you can be trusted to make sure it all runs smoothly. That’ll give you a few feathers in your cap when you come to ask for your rise or promotion.

Open Up

People who are open and honest tend to be seen as more trustworthy than those who are private or secretive. It’s not really fair most of the time, but that’s the way it is. If you are a private person, try to be a little more forthcoming about yourself – you’ll find it helps your image. You don’t have to bare your soul; just join in talking about your holiday or discussing your favorite music, or tell the odd anecdote about when you were a child.