A lot of people believe that likeability is something that you’re either born with or you’re not. They believe that it’s based on how attractive, intelligent, and outgoing you are – all qualities that are determined largely by genetics and can be difficult to alter.

But actually, research indicates that this isn’t the case. Likeability isn’t something that you’re born with. It’s something that you can learn, develop, and enhance. It’s true that attractive, intelligent, outgoing people are appealing. But research has shown that people find qualities like honesty, sincerity, and empathy to be even more likeable. These are qualities that you can adopt – although it may require a shift in your mindset and a little effort.

But hey – it’s worth the effort! Being likeable at work is a wonderful thing. Likeable people have an easier time collaborating with others. They’re more effective and productive. And they make the office a friendlier and more harmonious place to be.

So what do you need to do to become more likeable at work? Well, author Travis Bradberry suggests that you adopt the following behaviors:

  1. Ask questions – When you ask people questions, it shows them that you’re really listening and interested in what they’re saying. Just make sure that you ask clarifying questions (“How did you feel when that happened?”) and not challenging questions (“Are you crazy?”).
  2. Put away your phone – When you’re having a conversation with someone, you should really focus on that person. Even a quick glance at your phone suggests that you’re not really interested in what the person is saying.
  3. Be honest – Don’t try to impress people by putting on an act or trying to be something that you’re not. Instead, be honest and genuine. It’s a really appealing quality!
  4. Keep an open mind – Try not to let your own attitudes, feelings, and beliefs distract you from what other people are saying. If you can keep an open mind, people will feel more comfortable talking to you and sharing their ideas.
  5. Don’t seek attention – It’s great to get noticed and receive praise, but if you’re desperate to get it, this can sometimes be a little off-putting.
  6. Be consistent – Even if you’re having a lousy day, don’t take it out on your coworkers. No matter what, try to be kind and polite.
  7. Use the right body language – We communicate a lot through our expressions, posture, and gestures. So make eye contact, lean forward when someone is talking, don’t cross your arms, and speak with an enthusiastic tone. It will work wonders!
  8. Use people’s names – Research has shown that people really like it when others refer to them by name during a conversation. So use peoples’ names when you greet them, and continue to use their names occasionally as you talk. This simple habit will increase your appeal!
  9. Know when to open up – It’s great to be honest with other people about what you’re thinking and what’s going on in your life. But wait until you have a solid relationship before you start sharing personal information.
  10. Smile – If you smile when you’re talking to other people, they will most likely mirror your behavior and smile back. This will make them feel happy – and more positive about you!

So there you have it. Do these things, and you’ll be well on your way to being incredibly, irresistibly likeable!


Bradberry, T. (2015, January 27). 13 habits of exceptionally likeable people. Forbes. Retrieved from: http://www.forbes.com/sites/travisbradberry/2015/01/27/13-habits-of-exceptionally-likeable-people/