We all want to be well liked—especially by our co-workers. Hey, you spend more time with these people than you do with your friends and your family, so it only makes sense that you’d rather not be the Regina George of your office.
Like me, you’ve probably read your fair share of tips and advice on how to be more likable at work. But, if you’re really like me, you probably went on to implement absolutely none of it. Guilty as charged? Yeah, that’s what I thought.
But, I have news for you: Being more likable isn’t really all that difficult. It doesn’t need to be this major, complex undertaking. In fact, there’s one thing you can do that will instantly make you gain favor with absolutely everybody on your team.
What’s this magical answer? It’s simple: Be a better team player.
Let’s face it—pretty much everybody loves and respects the person who’s willing to lend a helping hand or take one for the team every now and then. So, if you’re eager to have your co-workers shower you in compliments and adoration, you need to step up to the plate and prove that you’re not always just looking out for number one.
How do pull this off and prove that you subscribe to that age-old cliché of, “There’s no ‘I’ in team!”? Here are a few simple tips you can implement immediately—and fairly easily.
1. Do the Thing Nobody Else Wants to Do
Have you ever heard a fellow employee let out a complaint that goes something like, “How dare Jason clean out the breakroom microwave! I was planning on complaining about the exploded ravioli that was in there for another solid three weeks!”?
No? I didn’t think so.
Most of us want to skip out on the dirty work and those tasks that make us cringe (or worse, gag), and we’ll pretty much do anything and everything in our power in order to do so.
But, if you can position yourself as the team member who’ll roll up your sleeves and actually unjam the printer—rather than repeatedly walking past that obnoxious blinking light while not-so-convincingly pretending you don’t see it? Well, it’s pretty much impossible for anybody to dislike you.
2. Don’t Just Listen
Sure, sometimes it’s nice to have somebody there to listen to you vent about your problems. But, do you know what else is great? Somebody who’s willing to step up and help you fix them.
The next time a co-worker is ranting to you about how swamped she is or how she keeps getting stuck with a pesky error in Excel, go past just listening and see if you can offer any potentially helpful solutions.
Are you familiar enough with her work that you could volunteer to take something off her plate for the time being? Are you an Excel whiz who could take a quick look at that spreadsheet and get rid of that obnoxious problem?
Yes, even being available to commiserate or sympathize with that person is a nice and friendly gesture. But, if you can take things a step further and actually spring into action to make your colleague’s life a little easier, you’ll quickly foster a reputation as the nicest one in your office.
3. Do Something Nice—Just Because
When’s the last time you did something nice for your colleagues, just because you felt like it? Are you drawing a major blank? Don’t worry—you aren’t alone.
Just like in any other relationship, it becomes easy to forget to do those little things that show your appreciation for your co-workers. So, why not do something today?
Pick up some pastries or a few extra coffees on your way into the office in the morning. Offer a genuine compliment, like on a project that a colleague recently knocked out of the park. Or, empty your team member’s trash while you’re taking your own out.
These are all super minor things that require almost no effort on your part. But, they can make a huge difference in the way your co-workers perceive you. And, bonus, it’s bound to make you feel good too!
You probably don’t strut into the office each and every morning thinking, “Let’s see how many of my teammates I can piss off today!” At least, I certainly hope you don’t.
For the most part, we all want to be liked in the office. And, fortunately, it’s not that hard to foster a positive reputation and strengthen the bonds you share with your colleagues. Believe it or not, all you really need is to be an awesome team player.
Implement these three easy tips to do just that, and you’re sure to become the most likable person in your office.
TopicsSucceeding on the Job , Co-Workers , Syndication , Career Advice , Work Relationships , Reputation , Work Friends
Photo of friendly co-workers courtesy of David Lees/Getty Images.
Kat is a Midwest-based freelance writer, covering topics related to careers, self-development, and the freelance life. In addition to writing for The Muse, she's also the Career Editor for The Everygirl, a columnist for Inc., and a contributor all over the web. When she manages to escape from behind her computer screen, she's usually babying her rescued terrier mutt or continuing her search for the perfect taco. Say hi on Twitter @kat_boogaard or check out her website.More from this Author