Choose Respect Before Likeability

It’s nice to be liked. Early in life, it’s the best social currency for collaborating with others. If people don’t like you, they won’t invite you to their birthday parties.

As you progress and enter the productive world being liked is still nice, but it fades further into the background as the primary metric for who will collaborate with you. It gets overshadowed in importance by being respected.

I’ve worked with people everyone loved but had little respect for and people everyone respected but didn’t like. Everyone would rather have a beer with the former, but everyone would rather work with the latter.

People you work with do not need to like you.

In fact, if you feel great about how they all love you it may be a good time to think critically about how they see you. The most liked people aren’t often the most respected. If you’re worried about whether they like you, you may be failing to ensure you’ve earned their respect. If you stress about whether they make fun of you behind your back, you’ve got the wrong focus.

People you work with need to respect you.

Ask yourself if they do. Do they want you to have ownership over projects? Do they trust you implicitly? Would they speak highly of your work, even if they made fun of your personality? If so, they probably respect you.

I don’t mean to imply it’s a complete trade-off. You can be liked and respected, which is an amazing combo. The challenge is the more you are liked, the better it feels in the short term and the more incentive there is to protect it. When you start worrying about protecting your reputation as “fun” or “nice” you can stray from what you actually do best and slip in the respect department.

The most effective teammates and certainly the most effective leaders are liked and respected. I would argue, however, that one of the primary reasons they are liked is because of how respectable they are. The likeability can grow on people. But if you lead with being liked it doesn’t tend to morph into respect over time.

Respect must be earned through a reputation of value creation. It doesn’t come with titles or business cards or corner offices or degrees or years of experience. If they don’t respect you now, they’ll respect you less when you get the promotion. To them, you’re the same person but in even further over your head.

Focus on value creation and stay above petty stuff and popularity contests. Be kind to everyone, deliver above and beyond expectations. You’ll get the respect anchored down. Then you can work on the likeability part.

*Oh, and being disliked is not the same as being respected. Don’t assume you are respected just because everyone is afraid of you or thinks you’re an a**hole. Yes, people thought Steve Jobs was an a**hole, but the causality doesn’t run that way. Most a**holes are not value-creating highly respected leaders. Never take pride in being disliked by those you work with.

Written by the amazing Isaac Morehouse

Isaac is the founder and CEO of Praxis. His company’s mission and his life mission is to help people awaken their dreams and live free.

Published with permission

Screen Shot 2017-01-12 at 15.43.42
Goodbye With Love- Michelle Obama
Kylo Ren Reviews Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (SPOILERS!)
Why all world maps are wrong
Husband Plants a Field of Scented Flowers for His Blind Wife to Smile Every Day
Introducing Microsoft Surface Studio
Sebastian Vettel – LaFerrari Aperta
There Is Something About Driving
The Truth By Carelle Style
The iPhone: 2007, meet 2017
Seeing the original iPhone for the first time
How Berry Gordy Revolutionized Rhythm & Blues
Screen Shot 2016-08-05 at 18.43.20
Even Bombs Could Not Stop This Wedding
The Rebirth Of Cool Photography- GREG WILLIAMS
This Boxing Film Looks Very Good Indeed
Seal joins busker for impromptu duet – and its AMAZING!
Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 19.32.43
Being Batman
Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 19.17.23
Progression of BMX in Cuba | Dispatches
Screen Shot 2017-02-06 at 19.13.25
The Superman
How The Running Man Predicted Our Future

Follow us on Facebook!