It’s tough to find the perfect balance between being nice and assertive at work. If you’re too sweet, you’re considered to be either fake or weak. If you’re too assertive, you’re a bitch and unapproachable. Since finding the perfect median can be difficult, most women usually go with one or the other.
Which one should you choose? Definitely do not go with the "too sweet" route. A recent work-study, which compiled over 20 years of data, found that women who were “disagreeable” at the office made five percent more than their friendlier work counterparts.
A second part of the study found that business students posing as potential job candidates who were viewed as more “agreeable” were less likely to get hired. Why is this? Well, there are several reasons being the "nice girl" may not exactly benefit you in the work place.
Firstly, a worker who is "too nice’" is more likely to offer to help out more, create more work for him or herself, and is less likely to speak up when something is unfair. This can create a more stressful work environment (for the nice worker), which leads to decreased productivity.
Secondly, a worker who is more “agreeable” is less likely to negotiate a promotion or raise. Employers found that a more aggressive employee is more likely to stand up for him or herself and ask for pay raises and promotions. Contrary to popular belief, this kind of behavior is actually admired.
In no way do the results of this study mean you should suddenly start acting bitchy in the office. It’s okay to be nice to your co-workers. By all means, be polite, ask about their weekends, offer to buy a coworker coffee, but don’t be the "yes" woman. Know your worth and don’t hesitate to stand up for yourself, ever.
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