Reading Notebook #7: The Secret of Successful People (at Work)

From “We Can Measure the Power of Charisma”, Q&A with Alex Pentland, Harvard Business Review (Jan-Feb 2010); read full article at HBR site.

The more successful people are more energetic. They talk more, but they also listen more. They spend more face-to-face time with others. They pick up cues from others, draw people out, and get them to be more outgoing. It’s not just what they project that makes them charismatic; it’s what they elicit. …

We think face time with colleagues is vital, as much as 2.5 times as important to success as additional access to information. …

We’re social creatures. When we see someone we are looking for those honest signals. Are they enthusiastic? Do they look like they know what they’re talking about? … Over the long term, the content matters more to success, obviously. But both are important. Positive, energetic people have higher performance.

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