Work Hacks Wednesday: Being Directive by Being Positive and Nice

I was in conversation with a much wiser colleague yesterday. He said something which struck me as very insightful. (Paraphrased)

“You often have to deal with lots of disgruntled and grumpy people to get stuff done. And being positive and smiling lots means you get to be a lot more directive because your team knows you are a good person and mean well.’’

Most of us are often in positions where we need to get stuff done without necessarily having any fancy title or vested authority. We need to influence, cajole, push/pull where needed and make sure work gets done. And this can get especially hard when dealing with people who may not want to do what you need to get done.

But, as this wise colleague observed, we have hope.

Being positive, nice and pushy when necessary means we can get away with it. And I don’t mean get away with it by burning any bridges – I mean getting things done with our team on our side.

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Of course, developing a sense of humor helps greatly though nothing is probably as important as taking ourselves lightly enough to be able to see the funny side of what we are doing.

So, if you are on the fence as to whether to take up a new project because you aren’t sure you will be able to drive work, take up the challenge and give it a shot. Just don’t take yourself too seriously, laugh lots and have fun along the way and it will work out just fine.

‘Many people struggle at work because they want more authority. It turns out you can get a lot done if you just take more responsibility instead. It’s often offered, rarely taken.’ | Seth Godin