One hugely successful New York advertising agency was built on kindness, said the founders Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval in their new book, The Power of Nice: How to Conquer the Business World With Kindness. Their simple but powerful philosophy: It pays to be nice.
In an era when the corporate world glorifies a dog-eat-dog mentality, these two dynamic women built … the Kaplan Thaler Group, one of the nation’s fastest-growing advertising agencies, not with spears and intimidation, but with flowers and chocolates. They wrote in the Huffington Post:
"Unfortunately, there is a deeply rooted belief in our culture that in order to succeed you have to act like a blood-thirsty medieval warrior, and that niceness is for the weak and the naive. That’s why there are books out there, like "Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office" and "Leadership, Sopranos Style." That’s why reality shows encourage contestants to "eat their young" in order to survive.
Actually, it takes courage to be nice. It takes bravery to help your enemy or give kudos to your competitor. It takes great inner strength show compassion for someone who isn’t treating you particularly well. It takes creativity to manage a difficult employee with kindness — in the short term, at least, yelling and threatening is a lot easier.
We believe that taking the energy to be nice is well worth the effort. The bullies and braggarts might appear to win in the short-term, but over the long haul nice guys finish first. Research has shown that taking the nice path will strengthen your career, your marriage, and even your health. So forget all those business guides that say you have to act like a barbarian to get ahead, and join us as we pass out flowers and chocolates. You’ve nothing to lose but your pitchforks."
(Huffington Post column)