Insider Advice: How Popular Professionals Get Ahead

The office: It’s not quite a popularity contest, but it may seem that way. Perhaps only a few on your team get all of the attention and certainly most of the praise. You also might wonder why you aren’t a part of the “in” crowd because you work just as hard. You’ll be relieved to know there’s a simple science to explain how popular professionals get ahead.

The Secret Sauce: Likeability

The secret sauce to almost everyone’s professional success is likeability: a word that is so simple but also deeply misunderstood. Likeability is often confused with negative, status-seeking behaviors that can ultimately push others away. However, UNC Chapel Hill psychology professor Mitch Prinstein says, “People who are well-liked are more likely than their equally-qualified counterparts to be hired, promoted, and even earn higher salaries.”

In other words, almost every professional wants to increase their likeability quotient in order to get ahead. There are perks to feeling like you fit in at work. Being well-liked also can lead to reduced stress, increased work fulfillment, happier personal lives and a potential reduction in anxiety-related disorders. Unfortunately, being likable doesn’t mean you get to slack off on the job.

Managing Your Social Matrix

Humans are social creatures. We all have a deep need to fit into our social matrix and be a part our micro-community. Social matrices are complex and ever-evolving, and they have almost nothing to do with social media. Rather, a healthy social matrix revolves around how people interact with one another in person.

Just as likeability has become confused with grandstanding and social status, the social matrix has become confused with who posts the coolest stuff on social media. Being popular on social media won’t help you engage with people face-to-face. Those who are genuinely likable in person are those who achieve far more success than empty status-seekers.

The office: It’s not quite a popularity contest, but it may seem that way. Perhaps only a few on your team get all of the attention and certainly most of the praise. You also might wonder why you aren’t a part of the “in” crowd because you work just as hard. You’ll be relieved to know there’s a simple science to explain how popular professionals get ahead.

The Secret Sauce: Likeability

The secret sauce to almost everyone’s professional success is likeability: a word that is so simple but also deeply misunderstood. Likeability is often confused with negative, status-seeking behaviors that can ultimately push others away. However, UNC Chapel Hill psychology professor Mitch Prinstein says, “People who are well-liked are more likely than their equally-qualified counterparts to be hired, promoted, and even earn higher salaries.”

In other words, almost every professional wants to increase their likeability quotient in order to get ahead. There are perks to feeling like you fit in at work. Being well-liked also can lead to reduced stress, increased work fulfillment, happier personal lives and a potential reduction in anxiety-related disorders. Unfortunately, being likable doesn’t mean you get to slack off on the job.

Managing Your Social Matrix

Humans are social creatures. We all have a deep need to fit into our social matrix and be a part our micro-community. Social matrices are complex and ever-evolving, and they have almost nothing to do with social media. Rather, a healthy social matrix revolves around how people interact with one another in person.

Just as likeability has become confused with grandstanding and social status, the social matrix has become confused with who posts the coolest stuff on social media. Being popular on social media won’t help you engage with people face-to-face. Those who are genuinely likable in person are those who achieve far more success than empty status-seekers.

Daniel Clemens, the founder of several multimillion-dollar businesses, says, “The ability to establish great relationships with others seems to be every bit as important to success if not more, yet it’s not taught in a formal way.” Establishing yourself as a part of your office culture by giving away so much may sound counterintuitive. Professionals can fall into behavior traps based on greed, lack-mindedness, and insecurity. When you increase your likeability quotient by giving away praise and your time, collaborating and sharing with others, you will see the successes you desire the most.

Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2018/03/06/insider-advice-how-popular-professionals-get-ahead/#43f1887a1bb6

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