Phil for Humanity Phil for Humanity
A Guide for the Survival of Humankind and Helping the World, Society, and Yourself.

Appearance is Everything

Iíve always considered myself a person of practicality and productivity, who loathes showiness and bullshit. However, Iíve recently learned (the hard way) that appearance is much more important than doing good work in most peopleís opinions. Iíve actually witnessed not doing any actual work as a milestone to be achieved, recognized, and applauded.

Basically, it is far easier for people to remember a personís character and attitude than their actually accomplishments. This is because accomplishments are quickly forgotten, yet an individualís personality is not. Therefore in most peopleís eyes, how well a person interacts with others is much more important than the quality and quantity of their work, because they typically do not see or remember an individualís work in detail. Additionally, managers tend to infer that a good person does a good job, and a good person is someone who everyone works well with.

As a result, those individuals who are savvy enough to have a positive attitude and advertise themselves as optimistic are much more likely to be promoted. Even if the person is known for pomp, it is more important to be able to spin everything optimistically than to be very productive or even correct most of the time. Again, managementís opinion about their employees is more about how employees appear to management than the employeesí actual work. Therefore, appearing optimistic and appearing socially constructive at work improves your managementís assumptions about you, thus your appearance also indirectly helps your career.

Therefore, I recommend these 4 simple rules in order to succeed when working in a team. First, always appear optimistic with a "we can do it" attitude when dealing with management. Second, always be realistic, yet not pessimistic, when dealing with the employees who do the actual work. Third, advertise yourself. Here are a few examples on how to advertise yourself: dress up in a tie or suit more often, attend meetings that you were not invited yet you think are important for you to do your job, and personally introduce yourself to every manager from every department and let them know what you can do for them. Fourth and finally, continuously ask for more responsibilities so that you can learn more until you know all aspects of the business.

After a while, you will appear to be a team player who cares for the company and the employees working there. As a result, management will depend on you more than a pessimistic employee who they do not like interacting with; and at that time, you will become more indispensable to management. Eventually, your appearance will change from someone who is easy to work with to someone who is easy to work for. At this time, it will be easy for you to ask and receive a promotion.

by Phil for Humanity
on 02/19/2008

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