Nice People

I finally had a chance to sit down and catch up on reading all the RSS feeds I’m subscribed to. This past week and a half has been filled with dealing with a very frustrating publication, some of which was through a blackberry in another time zone because I was traveling from work. We’re still dealing with the aftermath though things have calmed down some. They are very demanding and have asked for many changes to their newly redesigned website over the past week. As the requests grew (many for changing things that we just changed), I really wanted to just tell them no (I have recently been given almost complete control over what goes up on all our websites in an effort to improve them and let the publishers focus on running their publications instead of being web designers). Each time, I took a deep breath and told myself that as long as this change didn’t mess up anything design-wise, it would make them happy if we put it in and soon they would be satisfied.

While I was reading my RSS feeds, I came across the following snippet of Tantek’s blog on Nice people:

  • Give more time and attention to nice people: For now here is my summary advice: focus most of your time on the people that are nice (or overall clear net positives), some of your time on people who are neutral (or unclear if they are net positive or negative), and no more than 1% of your time on people who are mean (or net negatives). This explicit distribution of time will likely take considerable proactive effort on your part, as once you start analyzing how much time you spend on whom, you’ll likely realize that the net negatives end up soaking up most of your time (and emotional energy / attention span for that matter) by default. You will almost certainly need to take firm steps to reduce the time you spend both with such individuals, and even thinking about them, and then be sure to fill that time by both thinking about and spending time with nice people.

Unfortunately this particular publication happens to be the largest money maker for the company (although they are #3 currently for Internet revenue due to larger expenses). However, I do think that this method has some merit and I think people tend to do more for nice people anyway.