Yu Han & Richard Feloni of the Business Insider dusted off the Napoleaon Hill essay on how to “Develop a Pleasing Personality“. Napoleon Hill wrote “Think and Grow Rich” which is one of the top-selling books of all time.
Hill’s 14 habits of people who are so likeable that others go out of their way to help them.
1. They develop a positive mental attitude and let it be seen and felt by others.
It’s often easier to give into cynicism, but those who choose to be positive set themselves up for success and have better reputations.
2. They always speak in a carefully disciplined, friendly tone.
The best communicators speak deliberately and confidently, which gives their voice a pleasing sound.
3. They pay close attention to someone speaking to them.
Using a conversation as an opportunity to lecture someone “may feed the ego, but it never attracts people or makes friends,” Hill says.
4. They are able to maintain their composure in all circumstances.
An overreaction to something either positive or negative can give people a poor impression. In the latter case, says Hill, “Remember that silence may be much more effective than your angry words.”
5. They are patient.
“Remember that proper timing of your words and acts may give you a big advantage over impatient people,” Hill writes.
6. They keep an open mind.
Those who close themselves off from certain ideas and associate only with like-minded people are missing out, not only on personal growth, but also opportunities for advancing their careers.
7. They smile when speaking with others.
Hill says that president Franklin D. Roosevelt’s greatest asset was his “million-dollar smile,” which caused people to lower their guard during conversation.
8. They know that not all their thoughts need to be expressed.
The most likeable people know that it’s not worth offending people by expressing all their thoughts, even if they happen to be true.
9. They don’t procrastinate.
Procrastination communicates to people that you’re afraid of taking action, Hill says, and are therefore ineffective.
10. They engage in at least one good deed a day.
The best networkers help other people out without expecting anything in return.
11. They find a lesson in failure rather than brood over it.
People admire those who grow from failure rather than wallow in it. “Express your gratitude for having gained a measure of wisdom, which would not have come without defeat,” Hill says.
12. They act as if the person they are speaking to is the most important person in the world.
The most likeable people use conversation as an opportunity to learn about another person and give them time to talk.
13. They praise others in a genuine way without being excessive.
“Praise the good traits of others, but don’t rub it in where it is not deserved or spread it too thickly,” Hill says.
14. They have someone they trust point out their flaws.
Successful people don’t pretend to be likeable; they are likeable because they care about their conduct and reputation. Having a confidant who can be completely honest with them allows them to continue growing.