The Most Underrated Skill in the Workplace (Part II)
So, if you have read my latest post you will know this is part two of two parts. And if you haven’t — this is part two of two parts — so far this is very thought provoking.
Anyways, the title sort of tells the story here so without further ado I will reveal what I think is the most underrated skill in the workplace (part two) which is being nice. And yes I do think that is a skill.
Being nice is so, so, so underrated. I can’t explain how valuable I think being nice is but I’ll attempt to. Here’s why I think being nice is the most underrated skill in the workplace.
1. It’s hard to not like someone that is being nice to you. For me, there is nothing bad about being nice. If someone is in an awful mood and they’re met with your niceness … what’s the worst that can happen? Being pleasant to talk to, showing a genuine interest in someone and being thoughtful in your interactions with them go a long way in my opinion.
2. It creates instant warmth and better relationships. Whenever you meet someone new, we all have that hesitation of ‘oh my god is this going to be awkward’ or ‘lets hope I don’t forget their name’ but I would argue that just being a nice human takes away that awkwardness. If you just go in a conversation focused on being nice I think you’ll be surprised how the interact will go. People that are met with niceness and positivity are more likely to be put in a better mood and I think you’re more likely to have a better interaction. Equally, people in better moods are more likely to talk to you about real stuff and you are able to create a good relationship — which in the long run is mutually beneficial for all.
3. It makes you feel good. Studies show that being nice doesn’t only benefit the person receiving the kindness but it benefits the person being nice. From random acts of kindness to asking how someone’s day went — it makes us feel good. A study from a journal details how spending money on others improves our own happiness (1). Now, I’m not saying spending money on lavish gifts for your co-workers is necessary (although if you’re offering..) but making someone a drink, asking about their weekend before hammering them with work questions all makes for a good interaction. It benefits you and it benefits them.
4. It makes everything more human. I think sometimes we accidentally get tripped up by the metaphorical pile of emails, the reel of missed calls and the deadlines looming. We often forget that, on a very basic level, we are humans interacting with other humans. Asking if someone wants a cuppa when they look a little stressed or asking Sandra how her weekend was makes work less like a task and more like an enjoyable thing.
At least… that’s how I view it. I used to think that being ruthless and cut-throat was the way that the world of work was meant to be. You know, ‘Devil Wears Prada esque’, high heels, power suit — r-u-t-h-l-e-s-s. Now, I’m realising that the opposite is true. The happiness and most fulfilled people I see in the workplace are genuinely just nice people.
Anyways… what would I know I’ve only been in full-time work 3 years.