Does it pay to be nice or agenda-driven to get ahead in life?

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    Dec 04, 2012 1:00 AM GMT
    spgem saidIn the long run, does it pay to be the good guy at all times or be the player lookin out for his best interests who does whatever it takes to get ahead in life? Does it pay to be cutthroat or be a team player?


    I don't think you have to be an altruistic martyr if you choose not to be completely selfish. I would look for synergies and mutually beneficial exchanges: apples for oranges. Also, think ahead, what will you be able to do in 5, 10, 15, years from now vis-a-vis the other people in your life and what they will be able to do. If you see potential for mutually beneficial and/or synergistic future associations, then keep in touch and let them know you care.

    With everyone else, you want to be civil and cooperative: especially if it is necessary for a bigger mission (e.g., a work team or colleagues). But, do not be a door mat, know where to draw the line and to be firm with people if they are being unfair. The pillars of a successful relationship (in work and in personal life) are trust and reciprocity (synergistic and/or mutually beneficial) that is sustainable or has potential to develop or grow. Those people with whom you have no synergy with now and don't expect to have one in the future or you cannot trust them to be reliable and/or honest, you should avoid.

    You define success (it can be material or subjective) nonetheless so long as you are not deluding yourself and you derive actual utility (subjective or material) from the association that is success. However, society's view of success may not coincide with your subjective utility. So, the principles above will not necessarily lead to economic success.
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    Dec 04, 2012 2:04 AM GMT
    On a related note, people often confuse being nice with pleasing others, and there's a difference. Pleasers often get stepped on because their mission is to make others happy in an effort to be in good graces. The better choice is to be respectful, that way you can go after what you want but still retain credibility and good standing with people (usually).
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    Dec 04, 2012 2:25 AM GMT
    spgem saidGreat response HndsmKansan & mickeytopogig icon_smile.gif


    I second and third the motion!!
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    Dec 04, 2012 3:03 AM GMT
    I think it takes a little bit of both... if you're too nice, people walk all over you so you can't ever get ahead, but if you're "cutthroat" then you end up all bitter and what not...
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    Dec 04, 2012 3:10 AM GMT
    Just remember to be nice to everyone on your way up, they are the same people you'll see on your way back down.
    It doesnt have to be mutually exclusive though. You can be a nice guy and make it to the top. Unfortunately many times those at the top are rude obnoxious back stabbers.
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    Dec 04, 2012 3:11 AM GMT
    You can have and do both.

    I am one of the nicest guys you'll ever meet. I won't step over people to get where I wanna go. I will get to where I wanna go because I treat people right and work hard. I am a believer in karma
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    Dec 04, 2012 12:45 PM GMT
    Great responses all u guys icon_smile.gif We shud all try never to burn any bridges. The more u get along with people the better. Network, network, network!! Sugar leaves a better taste in people's mouths then vinegar icon_smile.gif