Two supervisors were talking about their employees during their lunch break. They were given the task of ranking their employees in order of productivity. Hesitant to do this, both were aware that a layoff was likely. Having been through it before, they knew how unpleasant it was for everyone, especially those who were being released.
Their worries came true the following week, and they both had to lay off employees.
One of the supervisors mentioned Jim, who was a good employee and equal with the others, but he caused a lot of chaos on his team. He was critical of other team members and constantly pointed out their shortcomings and failures. He had difficulty communicating with others, both superiors and his peers. When anyone mentioned anything about his character within the team, he became defensive and argumentative. Jim was the team's youngest member. He had a good education. He arrived early and, if asked, would stay late. But he lacked the maturity and knowledge required to contribute to great results for the team.
So, when layoffs came, Jim was one of the ones who fell out of the bottom.
Jim's situation reminded me of a book I read many years ago by Tim Sanders called The Likability Factor. It was an interesting book full of examples of how "likable" people succeed. He showed decades of research and examples of how these people were promoted and chosen over other employees of similar production.
In my examination of the title of Sanders's book, I can see the antithesis of the title. That would be that unlikable people don't succeed. Take Jim; although sad, many factors led to his being laid off over others. It is effortless to be unlikable and not even know it. This is why I talk about blind spots so much.
Discovering what others experience of us and how others describe us can be incredibly courageous and powerful. Our character and likability are always on the line; positive feedback makes it easier to know where we stand. When we expose our blind spots, we find we can help bring out the best in others, handle life's challenges with grace, and excel in our daily roles. Making healthy changes is possible when we become aware of our unlikability and how we present ourselves to those who matter to us.
What is it people are saying about us behind our backs? They might be saying things that limit our future. What is being said that we don't know? What is causing vital information to stay hidden from us?
Watch for the blind spots.
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Blind Spots in Relationships
What I don't know I don't know about myself
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