Are You A Likable Person?
As a society we tend to place high value on people with extroverted personalities. Nowhere does this become more apparent than in business. While we can agree that it's an edge, extroversion should not be confused with superb people skills.
Most people will agree that they want to work with people they like, or at the very least, people they don't mind being around. Clients will evaluate you in much the same way —while you may be competent at what you do, if people don't like you, they surely won't want to work with you.
3 Key Traits to Cultivate to Increase Sales & Better Your Business Relationships
Studies have shown that there are 3 characteristics shared by likable people: empathy, reliability and integrity. While cultivating them may take effort, the ability to attract and retain long-term business (and personal!) relationships is worth it.
By definition empathy is being able to be sensitive, relate to and understand the situation and/or perspective of another person. The majority of strong, lasting relationships have a foundation of mutual empathy, yet it's not only a skill that many lack, it's also hard to fake.
Empathy requires self-awareness as opposed to self-absorption. The ups and downs of your personal and professional life often influence how you empathize, with whom or whether you do at all.
Don't mistake empathy as a way of suggesting you need to be a people pleaser. It means that you need to cultivate the willingness to listen, react less and put yourself in the other person's position.
Take a peek at politics, entertainment, sports or business and it's easy to see how we've become a culture permeated with an unfortunate lack of integrity. If no one's watching, will you do the right thing? Will you speak up about wrong doing, even if it's not a popular opinion?
Smart and capable people are a dime a dozen, but integrity is more difficult to come by, especially in business. If you have it, you're likely leaps and bounds above much of your competition.
Starbucks is a great example of reliability. With as much as I travel, I've been to a Starbucks in so many airports and cities, I've lost track. Rant about corporate coffee as much as you want, but here's why I continue to patronize Starbucks: whether I'm in Los Angeles or running through Minneapolis — St. Paul Int'l Airport, I can count on Starbucks to deliver my drink exactly as I want it without variation.
By cultivating a reputation for security, customers become attracted. If service is consistently reliable, people will continue to pay because they know what they'll get. The second service becomes manic, customers get nervous. Mistakes happen and most people will be understanding so long as it's rare. Deception on the other hand, tends to cause people to run for the hills and not look back.
Try and try again.
At the end of the day, we're all human. While it's impossible to be perfect all the time, try. If you're genuinely likable and consistently work to build strong relationships with your co-workers, current and perspective clients, as well as friends and family, it will be time well spent.