Nicer *is* Smarter

Over on Jerry Weinberg’s SHAPE Forum, there’s a discussion on what we’ve learned about XP over the last few years.

One of the themes is that success depends on the human interaction skills of the people involved. (I guess we could say that about any method.)

So when I see techies wearing T-shirts with slogans like “I’ll be nicer if you’ll be smarter,” I think we’re missing the point:

Nicer is smarter.

People who are pleasant to work with –people who have developed their human interaction skills — get more done. They contribute to the positively to morale and to the bottom line.

Sure there are competent jerks — and we work with them when we must. But given a choice most people would prefer to work with someone who is competent and pleasant. And some research shows that given a choice, people will choose working with a less competent, but pleasant co-worker over working with a competent jerk.

(Plus, being pleasant is free.)