How to be Attractive at Work

Oh, I would love to know. Did that title catch your eye?

If I saw it flash up on my computer screen, I would think – exactly where is he going this time???

Well, here’s the answer – just so you can relax.

It’s been 35 years since they pushed me out of college and into the real world of business with an accounting degree. I’ve worked in major public accounting firms, huge companies, boutique consulting companies, and I’ve been self-employed for most of the last 25 years. I’ve seen thousands of employees, managers and executives succeed, and just as many – perhaps more – flame out, stall and fail.

With these many observations in mind, for my book Do What You Can! we made the subtitle “Simple Steps – Extraordinary Results”. It’s a catchy phrase, but to me it’s the guiding statement for much of my work. Here’s why.

I’ve always sought solutions that are fundamentally effective, relatively easy to implement, and cost far less than their likely benefits. One of my favorites is that in business – and in life – you will find your effectiveness attractive at workdoubled, tripled or beyond if you cultivate the ability to attract the people and other resources you need to advance toward your goals.

So we’re clear, I’m not talking about conning people into supporting your schemes and plans. I’m talking about being so ‘attractive’ in your work that the people you need are lining up to work with you.

Here are some examples of being attractive in a work setting:

  • You are reliable. You never leave supervisors and co-workers in the dark wondering about the status of your work. And you finish your work – on time and in a high quality manner.
  • You prepare for meetings and discussions, and bring something unexpected and positive to business projects.
  • You are all about finding solutions to issues.
  • You have a reputation of willingness to help other people succeed – not someone who can be taken advantage of or walked over. Rather, you are seen as a guide, coach or mentor interested in helping others grow in their own work.
  • You have a habit of improving your technical, interpersonal, communications and administrative skills. You take it upon yourself to get the meaningful performance feedback you need, identify the blind spots and weak points in your own performance, and take daily action to improve.
  • You are positive – even optimistic – in what you say, what you write and what you show others about yourself.
  • You are focused on the task at hand. Not frantic. Focused.
  • You project a calm confidence in your abilities. Especially when you are tired, stressed, frustrated, under the gun, against a deadline, or correcting others’ mistakes. Not cocky. Confident. In a calming manner.
  •  You are conscious of being a person others want to be around and support. Not in a fake or put-on manner. But instead by following these three Simple Steps:
  •  You are Present – You’re not distracted in meetings and discussions. Others notice that you put down the ‘distraction-box’ mobile device when others are present.
  • You are Intentional – You act with Purpose. You eliminate unnecessary distractions. You produce high- quality results in your work.
  • You are Helpful – Every businessperson I have ever met has some knowledge or skill that others in their workplace need. You know this as well, and you look for the daily opportunities to help someone else. You are amazed how many of them look for ways to help you as well.

This isn’t a complete list of what to do, but it will get you started towards accelerated success.

And it certainly doesn’t hurt to look your best, too.

How you present yourself to others shows that you respect them (and yourself!), and took the time to be aware of how you appear to them. Yes, appearances are often surface level and superficial; but they can matter in a business setting and should be attended to within reason.

Look, you and I both know it’s not really fair to judge people by their appearance. But it happens – so why not just eliminate any concerns by decision makers about how you might present yourself to customers and others. Show them your best in your work and your appearance. Start with a genuine smile – finish by pressing your clothes and shining your shoes!

In short, be attractive to others. Draw them to you with your positive energy, outstanding work and helpful disposition. Be the person they want to work with and support. Take these Simple Steps. Every day.

Best wishes for your success – however you define it.

Two Questions

  • In your work, what do you do so well that everyone recognizes your expertise in this one area? Who do you know who needs this skill? How could you teach them?

Start with a genuine offer to help them? Go and have that conversation right now. Right away. Today. But be ready for their offer to help you. It’s not why we offer to help, but it’s going to happen. Think in advance – what does that other person know that would help you improve you skills?

  • What’s the one skill you’ll need to master in your next job? Is it a business or administrative skill? Communications or interpersonal (writing, speaking listening, presenting, coaching)? Or maybe your internal consulting skills?

Who do you know who is already a master at this skill? Approach them about coaching you. Be specific. Prepare and present a one-page proposal. Include how you will help or repay them for their efforts.

  • Think of just one person in your work life who is able to attract others to them? Not because they are funny or pretty, but because they have a track record of teaching and helping others. Who is it? And what do they do each day that makes you feel ‘attracted’ to them and their work results?

Let Me Know What You Think

My purpose is to give you ideas you can use on your terms to advance your performance towards your goals. Please let me know what you think. Just click here to leave your own Better! ideas.

Best wishes for Better! results on your terms –

John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA







John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events.

Throughout his 35-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”

previous page