In the August 28-September 3, 2009 issue of the Phoenix Business Journal, Don Henninger, the publisher, had a great topic for his weekly column, “Why nice guys can finish first.” Mr. Henninger wrote about the results of a recent study by the Thunderbird School of Global Management on how workplace incivility costs U.S. companies $300 billion each year. In tough economic times like these, it’s interesting how people can be rude when every chance to earn a dollar is competitive. Sounds amazing that rude behavior can be so costly but when you think about it, rude behavior can be costly beyond the business setting.

It’s easy to point to bad behavior in others. After reading this column, I’m looking inward before pointing the finger. I’m not going to be a push over but there is something to looking at yourself first. Areas where we all can improve:
  • Say thank you and please.
  • Write a thank you note.
  • Wake up each morning with a positive thought.
  • Hold your breath for 10 seconds before saying anything negative.
  • Offer constructive criticism.
  • Clean up after yourself.
  • Smile.
  • Don’t speak on your cell phone when you are standing in line place a food order or to check out at a store.
  • Don’t interupt.
  • Keep your promises.
  • Don’t take people for granted.
  • Don’t cut someone off in traffic because you didn’t pay attention to the road.
  • Offer “the wave” is someone let’s you merge in traffic.
The list is endless. The challenge for myself is to be more aware of my behaviors and how I interact with others professionally and personally. Are there items you’d like to add to the list?

Be nice. It can make a difference in how you land you next piece of busienss or make it to work on time because another driver let you merge.

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